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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 August 14 - 20  > Broadcasters' group criticizes anti-NHK political party
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2019 August 14 - 20 [POLITICS]

Broadcasters' group criticizes anti-NHK political party

August 17, 2019
A group consisting of broadcasters and concerned citizens has recently published a statement criticizing the Party to Protect the People from NHK, the minor party that won a seat in the July national election by putting up slogans "Destroy NHK" and "Scramble signals of NHK broadcasting".

The statement says, "The Broadcast Act designates NHK as a broadcasting organization operated only by viewer fees, not funded by the state or by commercial revenues, so that NHK can independently and autonomously manage its broadcasting businesses free from state power and commercial enterprises." The statement points out that because of this concept NHK is being able to air programs "without being affected by viewer ratings" and stresses the need to maintain NHK as a common property of the people.

In regard to "scrambling broadcasts", the statement points out that the method to encrypt broadcast content would "significantly undermine viewers' right to access information" because they would "have to subscribe to NHK to obtain the tool needed to unscramble NHK programs". The statement warns that "a sharp decrease in revenues from viewer fees would be inevitable" and that documentary programs would be difficult to produce as a consequence.

The statement states that NHK "should take seriously" the fact that the anti-NHK party had received voter support and should stop acting as a government PR organ when reporting political news. The statement also demands that NHK devise ways for viewer-participation in NHK management and sincerely respond to opinions or criticism from viewers concerning NHK programs and news reporting.
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