Radio Al Balad on Saturday sent a letter of apology to the Lower House for reading a comment on air deemed insulting to the Chamber of Deputies and called for allowing the station to resume broadcasting sessions, which were halted last week. In the letter, addressed to Lower House Speaker Abdul Hadi Majali, Radio Al Balad Director General Daoud Kuttab said the station has taken all procedures to prevent a reoccurrence of the incident, adding that the â€œmistakeâ€ was not deliberate and does not reflect the stationâ€™s policies.
Kuttab also called on the Lower House to allow the station to resume live broadcasts of its sessions.
…The apology does not change anything, Audiovisual Commission Director General Husain Bani Hani told The Jordan Times yesterday.
…”After checking the archive, we found that the insult was read on air by the presenter and this is why we sent the apology and decided to take several measures,” Radio Al Balad Manager Sawsan Zaidah told The Jordan Times yesterday.
Radio Al Balad, formerly AmmanNet, has decided to carry out a restructuring process and create new positions, she added.
The station also decided to stop the broadcast of a programme for reading listenersâ€™ comments on air, which used to be aired daily. [source]
This is both sad and unfortunate. It’s another blow for media in Jordan, and the first major one for 2008. I can almost understand Radio Al-Balad deciding to issue an apology if it felt it had done something wrong by truly insulting MP’s, but the decision to restructure and even ending their broadcast of reading listener’s comments? All because of a comment? How bad could that insult have been? Heck, even I’m inclined to go digging through their January 29th archives to find it!
Perhaps the response was just too overwhelming for an entity like Radio Al-Balad to fend off, but I think there would have been some glory, if not journalistic credibility, in fighting it out. At least for a while.
The power of a comment.
It got MP’s riled up and filing lawsuits, not to mention the state’s
Ministry Of Truth Audio Visual Commission filing its own lawsuit, and now, even an online community radio station.
Sad and unfortunate.
Maybe you will be interested to read my opinion about this issues is today’s Addustour
I already searched their archives for the comment! And although there were several articles published on 29/1 â€¦ I am thinking it is most likely the third comment in this article:
accusing the parliament ofâ€¦ wait for itâ€¦ corruption and theft! Now that just canâ€™t be trueâ€¦?!?!
of course they are going to apologize …
bil surmayeh b3eed 3annak wil sam3een …
Batir: thanks for highlighting the story in the dailies, I’ll make sure to give it a read tonight.
Deena: thanks for the search. hmm, could that be it? that one may be deemed offensive to more than just our MP’s 😀
btw the comment deena is referring to has been deleted …
Thanks to all for your interest. The comment which caused the problem insulted the lower house of a problem by changing the third letter in the arabic word for representatives with the letter d . The reason we apologized is that this is contrary to our own declared policy which is not to allow personal insults. What our restructuring was to put the reading of the comments on our morning program which is hosted by an experienced journalists who would be careful about such comments. Rest assured this was not censorship on thought or opinions which we will never do.
Seriously !! The big problem is
How insulting !! How sensitive !!
Well how about
Or maybe The martial laws parliament.
Or maybe the Yarmook Massacre parliament
Or maybe the no-show parliament
So Mr Professionalism Kuttab, now that you have justified the lawsuit against your station, how do you justify the rejection for the license to broadcast outside of Amman, and how do you justify that 3 years after the king promised you there will be alternative media outlets there is no independent TV stations and that the prime minister gave orders not cooperate with journalists, and what about the parliaments considering banning all journalists from their sessions …..
I guess as long as you have your successful project, it is all nice and dandy
nas, few words for ya…newspeak and doublethink. by the way, 1) i checked the date and it really IS 2008 2) next on the agenda are thoughtcrimes
Mr. Daoud Kuttab: thank you sir for the clarifications we might otherwise not be privy to as outsiders who just read what we see. However, my problem is not with AmmanNet but with the reaction by both the elected representatives and the AVC. Regardless of your organization’s policy, what happened remains a testament to the fact that we live in an absurdly undemocratic country where people are not allowed to voice their opinion of even their own “elected” representatives, and are punished for doing so.
That is what is sad and unfortunate about all this.
Thanks again for your comment.
dear Musa (is that your name or a nick name?) You said:
So Mr Professionalism Kuttab, now that you have justified the lawsuit against your station, how do you justify the rejection for the license to broadcast outside of Amman, and how do you justify that 3 years after the king promised you there will be alternative media outlets there is no independent TV stations and that the prime minister gave orders not cooperate with journalists, and what about the parliaments considering banning all journalists from their sessions â€¦..
I guess as long as you have your successful project, it is all nice and dandy”
I am not sure what is unprofessional. We created guidliens for our web site and we mistakenly violated them by allowing this remark and so we did the honorable thing and apologized.
I don’t know where you find me justifying the law suit. We are the victims of the law suit. We have a license according to the rules and if I act in a way that is against my own policies I have a responisbility to my board to correct it and to show that this was not done with intent from us. We are not against the peole or the listeners but our own radio announcer read that and she should have been careful.
I would also like to thank you for your reply.
My comment was not exactly referring to the Amman Net case since I have no problem with the station setting and following guidelines, especially guidelines against slander and useless name-calling.
I tried to express the disappointment caused by your guest column at the Princeton school paper, since it was filled with undeserved praise, and offered a a much brighter (not to say completely fake) image of the media in Jordan, especially that it came from a supposedly credible source who works in the field.
Ah, the business of fear permeates and there’s a stench in the air….
I have no idea why the Al Balad Radio station needs to apologize to those morons just don’t see their case as legitimate ands valid I guess the only way they( fake Parliament and government} can silence people up is to throw a law suit against them, it is scared tactics to eliminate dissent ,pure and simple…