CtiTV’s news channel has operated inappropriately, to the extent that it impaired the interests and rights of subscribers, the National Communications Commission (NCC) said yesterday, adding that it has given the network three months to address the issue.
The commission announced its decision after reviewing video footage recorded in September last year by Taipei City Councilor Chiu Wei-chieh (邱威傑), who is also an online talk show host known as Guaji (呱吉).
The footage showed Chiu receiving a telephone call from a CtiTV salesperson, who asked if Chiu wanted to attend a talk show on CtiTV News, and have a feature story done about him and his online talk show.
He was then told that it would cost him about NT$170,000.
Chiu turned down the offer.
The channel is required to take the incident to its own ethics committee, which must discuss ways to improve its operations, the commission said.
The channel was also asked to stipulate ethical guidelines to be followed by its sales and advertising department, it said, adding that it should make public the records of the ethics committee’s decisionmaking process and send a copy of it to the NCC.
The management and personnel in the advertising department must undergo training on journalism ethics and standards, and the channel must send a report on how it followed the NCC’s ruling and whether doing so helped it improve its operations, the commission said.
The channel would be subject to administrative punishment if it fails to improve its operations within three months, the commission said, adding that it could continue to penalize the channel if it keeps failing to improve.
Asked why it took the NCC more than a year to reach a decision, the commission said it had to verify the information with Chiu and twice had to ask the management of CtiTV News to come to the commission to answer questions.
The channel was also asked to present diverse opinions when handling news about itself, after it was found in April to be using its talk shows to accuse the NCC of unfairly punishing the channel.
Meanwhile, Sanlih TV News was asked to improve its fact-checking mechanisms after it reported in March that a Kaohsiung city councilor’s voice was muted in a live stream of a question-and-answer session with Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) at the Kaohsiung City Council.
The NCC said that the incident was due to technical difficulties that occurred during streaming.
The channel also failed to verify the authenticity of an online report claiming that Beijing planned to take over the nation by sending 5 million immigrants to Taiwan, the commission said.
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