When I first heard reports about Ofcom fines against biased reporting involving Russia, I assumed it was the Russian government cracking down on critics of Putin, but I was wrong.
Ofcom is the British Office of Communications, and they fined Russian news agencies £200,000 for their allegedly biased reporting that violated rules about “due impartiality”. Here is Ofcom’s press release:
The violations involved RT and Sputnik reports after the poisoning of Sergei Skirpal and his daughter in Salisbury, England, allegedly by Russian agents. Personally I don’t doubt that the RT reports were biased in that they represented the viewpoint of the Russian government. The fact that they represent the views of the Russian government should be clear to any viewer.
Of course many find BBC reporting in apparent violation of “due impartiality” involving political issues. For example here is a study that showed that over 96% of interviews involving Brexit were with supporters of remaining in the EU:
Others have claimed obvious bias in BBC reporting about the election of President Trump:
The US FCC used to enforce an “equal time” rule that required broadcasters to present different views more or less equally. That rule was abandoned in the 1980s.
Should the US bring back rules against biased reporting?
If so, how should anti-bias rules apply to state-supported media both from the US (PBS & NPR) and foreign governments (BBC, RT, etc.).
Should the rules apply just to broadcast reporting? Or should they include the internet, print, and other media?
I guess I am a little perplexed. You go to great lengths to describe a fine imposed by the british government under their laws and then immediately swivel to the US to propose some kind of anti-bias rule.
Great Britain differs from the US with regards to freedom of the press… Using Britain as an example doesn’t make any sense.
There were NEVER any rules against biased reporting… I assume you are referring to the fairness doctrine. The fairness doctrine only applied to over the air broadcasts. Not cable, not internet services, nothing else.