[Joint Press Conference] Civil Societies Demanded the Government to Abolish the Election Broadcast Deliberation Commission

by | Apr 26, 2024 | Free Speech, Press Release | 0 comments

28, March, 2024
By Joint Action Against Free Speech

The Election Broadcast Deliberation Commission (thereinafter referred to as the EBDC) has reached an intolerable point by stepping into the deliberation of broadcasts even unrelated to elections. The EBDC has been well-known for its political bias for a long time. The EBDC is imposing sanctions at an extremely fast pace, even on statements that are unrelated to elections.

The 22nd General Election Broadcasting Deliberation Commission was unilaterally decided by two ruling party members, Hee-lim Ryu and Seong-wook Hwang, in the absence of opposition party members. Most of the commission members are people related to the ruling party members who are recommended by conservative groups such as the TV Chosun and the Solidarity for Fair Media. According to the data released by the KCSC branch of the National Union of Media Workers, there are a total of 11 cases where the complaints raised in the EBDC coincide with the contents of the Solidarity for Fair Media’s monitoring reports. If these allegations are true, the EBDC, which is supposed to protect broadcasting independence and press freedom, has been manipulated into a complaint resolution body that decides on court sanctions when a conservative group complains. It is a blatant violation of the conflict of interests law if the commission members already knew of the complaint and failed to report it in writing and request recusal.

The EBDC is remarkable not only for the highest number of judicial sanctions but also for the basis of the sanctions. The 10 sanctions out of the 15 sanctions issued by the current EBDC are related to matters completely unrelated to the election, such as President Yoon Suk Yeol, First Lady Kim Geon-hee, and Ryu Hee-lim the chairman of the KCSC. The EBDC even attempted to impose sanctions on the statements related to the investigation of the 10.29 Itaewon tragedy citing “fairness.” The EBDC is wielding an unfair political blade against the criticism of the government and ruling party even if unrelated to the election.

The EBDC, which is supposed to review election broadcasts fairly, has become a complaint center for conservative media organizations. We firmly advocate for the immediate dismantling of the BEDC, as it infringes upon and undermines freedom of expression.

Korean version text


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