The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) banned television channels from coverage of terror attacks.
The electronic media regulatory body’s orders came in continuation to the earlier orders on the subject asking TV channels to adhere to the provisions of the PEMRA Electronic Media Code of Conduct 2015.
The Authority, in a notification issued today, stated: “It has been observed with grave concern that despite repeated directives satellite TV channels are unable to comply with provisions of Electronic Media Code of Conduct-2015 in letter and spirit.”
The regulatory body added that, amid a terror attack, news channels resort to marathon transmission ignoring basic journalistic norms and ethics only to “take lead” and “credit” for breaking the news first. It added that the channels also violate journalistic ethics by “airing live images of the crime scene.”
PEMRA stated: “Satellite TV channels and their staff is found ambivalent of not only their security but also create hurdles in rescue as well as combat operations.”
The electronic media watchdog further stated that information shared on news channels in such a situation is “unverified, speculative without consulting security agencies present on the spot”.
The notification read that such reporting creates chaos among domestic and overseas viewers.
PEMRA also mentioned that reporting such incidents gives benefits to terrorists for “using media as a form of political advertising” and serves their ideological purposes by “publicizing their campaign”.
“Moreover, media coverage of such incidents also gives terrorists an organizational advantage by allowing a specific group to exhibit its strength and audaciousness in comparison with its rivals,” the watchdog directive stated.
Remember that directive issues, after the past few months rising terror attacks have been recorded in Pakistan.