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IRIS 2017-1:1/15

France

CSA receives complaints about “Touche pas à mon poste” programme

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Amélie Blocman

Légipresse

On 23 November 2016, the national audiovisual regulatory authority in France (Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel - CSA), having received numerous complaints from viewers, issued a warning and formal notice to the TV channel C8, owned by the Canal Plus group, concerning two excerpts from “Touche pas à mon poste”, a programme presented on C8 every evening by Cyril Hanouna. A third excerpt is the subject of pending proceedings and could result in a sanction being imposed.

The warning concerns the edition broadcast on 27 September 2016, in which Cyril Hanouna yelled at a panellist: “Who was it who came into my office whining in July, eh? Shut up! What a fool he is!” The CSA considered that this verbal assault showed a lack of restraint likely to humiliate its victim. It was also seriously concerned about the repeated nature of this type of incident and how it might be imitated by young viewers.

The formal notice concerns part of the programme “Les 35 heures de Baba”, broadcast on 14 October 2016, in which another panellist, egged on by the presenter, kissed a female guest on the chest despite twice being told very clearly that she did not want to be kissed. The CSA ruled that this behaviour contravened Article 3-1 of the Act of 30 September 1986, in particular by depicting sexism and a degrading image of women.

Finally, the CSA received a huge number of complaints from viewers (who can now complain via an online form) about a third programme, broadcast on 3 November 2016, in which a crime attributed to the first panellist was re-enacted. Noting that the channel was already the subject of a formal notice with regard to respect for human dignity, the CSA director general submitted the file to the independent rapporteur responsible for instituting proceedings and the investigation of cases likely to result in sanctions. Sanctions can range from on-air apologies to fines.