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IRIS 2010-7:1/33

Romania

CNA Imposes Sanctions on the Electronic Media

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Eugen Cojocariu

Radio Romania International

On 3 June 2010 the Consiliul Naţional al Audiovizualului (National Council for Electronic Media, CNA) imposed a 10-minute prime-time interruption in broadcasting on the commercial TV station Antena 1, as a sanction for its repeated breach of regulations concerning the protection of minors (see IRIS 2008-5:17/27).

Antena 1 was ordered to broadcast between 19.00 and 19.10 an announcement of the sanction issued by CNA for repeated breaches of the Audiovisual Law and of the Audiovisual Code in the show „Acces Direct” („Direct Access”). The Show is broadcast live from Monday to Friday between 17.00 and 19.00 and the moderator was accused of having discussed repeatedly sexual matters focusing on minors involved in alleged prostitution and pro-xenphobia cases. The subject was also treated in Antena 1’s main news show „Observator” at 19.00. According to the law, subjects involving sexual matters can be broadcast before 22.00 only if the images and comments do not harm children. According to CNA's President Antena 1 has to suspend its broadcast for ten minutes and to relay only the CNA's sanction text within 24 hours after officially receiving the decision. Until now only the commercial station OTV had its broadcast suspended for ten minutes and, respectively, for 3 hours, in 2007-2008, due to CNA sanctions.

The CNA imposed a total of 163 sanctions (56 fines totalling Lei 765,000, around EUR 182,000, and 107 public warnings) to broadcasters for breaches of the audiovisual law between 1 January and 31 May 2010 (see IRIS 2010-1:1/38, IRIS 2009-1:18/29 and IRIS 2008-9:19/31). The CNA stated on 31 May 2010 that most sanctions were imposed on the commercial television stations OTV, ten fines (RON 155,000, approx. EUR 36,900) and two public warnings; Kanal D, four fines (RON 95,000, EUR 22,600) and six public warnings; Antena 1, four fines (RON 60,000, EUR 14,300) and six public warnings; Realitatea TV, two fines (RON 15,000, EUR 3,600) and six public warnings; Antena 3, three fines (RON 20,000, EUR 4,800) and three public warnings; Prima TV, two fines (RON 55,000, EUR 13,100) and three public warnings; Pro TV, one fine (RON 10,000, EUR 2,400) and four public warnings.

The public television TVR received five public warnings along with the commercial stations B1 TV (three public warnings), Naţional TV and Pro Cinema (two public warnings each), Etno TV, Vox News, Antena 2 and New Europe Channel TV (one public warning each).

The central television stations had imposed on them 46 public warnings, 26 fines of RON 410,000 (approx. EUR 97,600) and a decision on the right to reply.

The local television stations had imposed on them 25 public warnings, one fine (RON 5,000 approx. EUR 1,200) and three decisions on the right to reply.

References
CNA, Comunicat de presă 03.06.2010 RO
 http://merlin.obs.coe.int/redirect.php?id=12494
 
  Press release of the CNA dated 3 June 2010