It works! TV channels in January had almost no commissioned news items


The initiative “We’re not for sale!” reports that according to their monitoring, in January the amount of material prepared with infringements of the standards of topicality, significance and balanced presentation during news broadcasts had dropped sharply in comparison with previous months.

This was the conclusion reached by the four independent experts: Natalya Ligachova, Chief Editor of “Telekritika”, Victoria Syumar from the Institute for Mass Information, Taras Shevchenko from the Media Law Institute and Vitaly Maximov from the publication “Dyelo” [“Business”]

The monitoring was carried out on news programmes broadcast on 10 leading television channels.

Only five news items were found which breached the standards of topicality, significance and balanced presentation, against 20 in December and 27 in November. Only one of the items this time was about the Nuclear Energy Generating Company “Energoatom”, as opposed to 8 last month.

“This sharp decrease in the number of concealed ads which are presented in the guise of news items is a very cheering event for all viewers. We congratulate all our colleagues on this achievement since it’s firstly their victory, a victory for the sake of protecting the standards of the profession”, Victoria Syumar comments.

In the prime-time news broadcasts of 5 of the 10 nationwide channels not one such commissioned item was found.

Taras Shevchenko particularly noted the reduction in such material on ICTV’s “Facts” which in previous months had been one of the two anti-rating leaders.  Broadcasts with one particular reader which topped the anti-rating last month were totally “clean” in January.

Vitaly Maximov adds: “The trend is marvellous, however the monitoring will continue. There is a danger that the disease may return again.”

“In February the events around “Rosukrenergo” were the source of flagrant corporative “jeansa” [news material to order] on TV channel Inter”, Natalya Ligachova explains. “We also all understand that advertising material disappearing from the news continues its “life” in other programmes or production between programmes where it is still not clearly marked as advertising. This is a subject for open discussion between journalists, PR specialists and managerial staff which “Telekritika” is planning to organize in the near future.”

The initiative “We’re not for sale!” began in early November 2007 with a statement issued by dozens of television presenters, editors and journalists pledging to boycott any news material prepared to order.

The Initiative carries out daily monitoring of the news broadcasts on the main nationwide channels

The initiative “We’re not for sale!”

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