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    Democratic and Reform Resources Centre, Powered by Joomla!
    26 APR 2011 列印 E-mail

    Category

    Press Freedom

    Issue

    • MTR Corp apologizes over its threat to media freedom

    News Content

    • On behalf of the MTR Corp, the media consultancy, OMD sent a letter dated April 19 to 15 media groups saying the MTR reserved the right to cancel or reschedule any media insertion booked with any organization that published negative news coverage about the brand image of the MTR Corporation. The agency also asked the media to communicate it clearly to the editors/journalists of the editorial traffic team.
    • Hong Kong Journalists Association Chairman Mak Yin-ting described it ‘a brutal interference with press freedom’. The Hong Kong News Executives’ Association also expressed concern.
    • Legislator Andrew Cheng Kar-foo said it was a nasty blow to one of the core values of Hong Kong Society.
    • The MTR Corp later apologized for the misunderstanding caused to the public, saying the government-controlled Corp. respect freedom of press. Corporation acting chief executive officer Thomas Ho Hang-kwong said: ‘We’ have never had any intention to interfere with it (the press freedom). OMD said in a separate statement that its staff misunderstood the MTR’s instructions.

    Questions

    • The case shows pressure on media is growing. In the past, it was rather done in a rather subtle way. But the case shows the interference over press freedom can be done ‘in such a formal and explicit way.’