29.09.2009 The Broadcasting Council shall send a notice to TV Sitel due to broadcasting content that has elements of national intolerance

29 September 2009, Skopje – The Broadcasting Council (BC) decided today to send a serious notice to TV Sitel regarding the existing danger to spread national intolerance through the programmes of this Television.

The BC Monitoring has determined that within the show „Crn Bumbar Bel Bumbar”, shown on TV Sitel and broadcasted on the 24th of September, the host of the show has not reacted in an appropriate manner in order to prevent the viewers from using insulting vocabulary against certain ethnic groups while making comments on the encyclopaedia which was created by MANU.

„This is a topic of a very delicate nature, especially if we take into consideration the political situation in the Macedonian society and the present tensions between the ethnic groups that live in this society. As a result, the media have a particular responsibility when broadcasting contents that might cause some sort of justifying, spreading or instigating national hatred or starting interethnic tension. In this type of situations, the role of the host or the journalist is of particular importance, he/she should react appropriately so as to decrease the negative connotation of what was said.“ – stated the President of the Council, Zoran Stefanovski.

The BC has concluded that the show on TV Sitel does not represent a hate speech on its own. However, the host, in order to prevent abuse of the medium, should have distanced herself from such statements and should have pointed out to the viewers that those statements are inappropriate. In the end, depending on the content, she should have prevented the broadcasting of those statements.