Sat, Jan 26, 2019 - Page 8 News List

TVBS reporting hardly balanced

By Tu Ho-ting 杜和庭

Ironically, the spokesman’s news clip is still on the TVBS Web site.

As a countermeasure, the AIT posted the interview video on Facebook.

“The reason the interview was pulled from the programming lineup can only be answered by TVBS,” an AIT spokeswoman said.

In a public statement, TVBS claimed that “based on the principle of journalistic neutrality, when dealing with highly controversial news, TVBS’ internal editorial strategy is to remove them from the Web site to prevent further controversy and political manipulation from outside forces.”

It also said that “outside forces should not stir up this fake issue to press the media and interfere with the freedom of the press.”

Minister of National Defense Yen De-fa (嚴德發) has confirmed that the Chinese Strategic Support Force, a branch of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) — a Chinese “troll factory” — has launched a campaign of false news against Taiwan, aiming to help pro-China groups in next year’s presidential election.

National security sources said that the unit has more than 300,000 “cyberwarriors” and the support of the Fifty-Cent Army — more than 2 million Internet commentators hired by Chinese authorities.

Specifically, China used Taiwan’s local elections on Nov. 24 last year to train cyberwarriors and the Fifty-Cent Army by spreading disinformation through YouTube and Twitter, as well as Chinese microblogging sites, the national security sources said.

China remains the biggest security threat to Taiwan since 1949. Besides military intimidation, this highly authoritarian government is exploiting Taiwan’s openness, a weakness that exists in all democratic, free nations.

China believes that meddling in Taiwan’s elections and destabilizing society are a more efficient approach to achieving its goal of unification.

TVBS enjoys freedom of the press and its reports could certainly take a position on any issue under a democratic government named Taiwan or the Republic of China.

However, it should bear in mind that it would be impossible to do so under the government of the People’s Republic of China.

Tu Ho-ting has a master’s degree in diplomacy from National Chengchi University. He is a journalist and international political analyst based in Taiwan.

This story has been viewed 2762 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top