Thursday, February 07, 2008

What To Do When Something On-Air Goes Horribly Bad

Thankfully, Canada's Broadcast Standards Council ruled today that having controversial people on air doesn't breach their Code of Ethics in the case of VisionTV's broadcasts of Dil Dil Pakistan in July 2007.

If the ruling had gone the other way, as much as I deplore the hateful comments which were attributed to fanatical TV Islamic imam Dr. Israr Ahmad it would have had a chilling effect on free broadcast speech. Vision TV's actions, albeit that they probably took too long to take them after the complaints, seem to me like a textbook example of what any of us would do when a guest on our airwaves is alleged to have said something hateful/stupid/outrageous/damaging:
"VisionTV also pointed out the steps it had taken to respond to the complaints, including the establishment of a Task Force to look into the issue, the interim suspension of the broadcast of Dil Dil Pakistan, and the broadcast of apologies for any offence caused."

Do you monitor everything the voices are saying on your public affairs and religious programming, even when it airs early, early on a Saturday or Sunday morning?

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