Egay Uy .
CITY Administrator Teddy Sabuga-a Jr., who is concurrently the head of the City Social Welfare and Development Department, was reported to have recently “chastised a local broadcaster for supposedly insisting that a rape victim, who is a minor, narrate her ordeal on-air.”
The radio station that was referred to is a widely perceived violator of broadcasting etiquette or rules, if there be any. I recall though that there is Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas, a non-government, non-profit organization of broadcast media in the country. Among other matters, it provides its members broadcasting standards.
According to its website, “Its aims include the promotion of an independent and free broadcast media, responsible broadcasting, enhanced public service by broadcasters, advancement of innovation in broadcasting, and the development of Philippine broadcasting.” Well, maybe the home station of the local broadcaster is not a member of the KBP.
Nonetheless, the broadcasting standards that the KBP provides its members are worth to be observed even by non-member stations and individuals because I believe these standards are well-thought of and well-crafted to apply to everybody in the broadcast media. I do not doubt that a well-meaning broadcaster could easily subscribe to these standards.
Take for example Article 3 (Coverage Involving Children) of the KBP Broadcast Code provides that the child’s dignity and right to privacy must always be respected and the child should not be degraded or his innocence be demoralized. Moreover, identities of children who are victims shall be held confidential.
The code continues that any interview involving children shall be done upon the consent of the parent or guardian and shall be conducted only by lawful and authorized people. However, children should not be bribed or forced to recall and describe traumatic experiences or depressing moments.
Then there is Article 7 (Individual Rights) which provides, “Right to privacy of individuals, especially people affected by tragedy or grief, physically or verbally abused x x x shall be respected and shall be handled with sensitivity and discretion. News coverage should not violate nor interfere with an individual’s rights and should not demean or humiliate him or her.”
The standards are not difficult to understand even by people who are not in the broadcast media. They are presented in simple English that even dropouts will not have second thoughts about their meaning.
Yes, these are not difficult to understand.