Austrian Press Council: 2020 Much more cases, fewer violations | Tyrolean daily newspaper online

Die Berichterstattung von oe24.at und krone.at über die Wiener Terrornacht am 2. November 2020 wurde vom Presserat gerügt.

© GEORG HOCHMUTH

Vienna terror in the Austrian capital, the aftermath of the Ibzia video and above all the corona pandemic: 2020 was an exceptional year. Also for reporters. This can also be seen in the annual statistics presented yesterday by the Austrian Press Council. 418 cases occupied the association for self-regulation of the domestic print media in the previous year – more than ever before. For comparison: in 2019 the press council discussed 297 cases. Alexander Warzilek, Managing Director of the Press Council, attributes the increase to the many reports about the Corona situation. Readers objected to these particularly frequently. “Most of these complaints were not taken up,” explains Warzilek. This can also be seen in the number of violations of the code of honor of the Austrian press that were ultimately located by the three Senate chambers of the council. These fell from 38 in 2019 to 36.

Most violations (17) were the responsibility of the tabloid Austria and its online offshoot oe24.at. The Kronenzeitung violated the code of honor eleven times. To report on the standard, the self-regulatory body dealt with 52 cases, but none of them was rated as a violation. The daily newspaper Kurier found a violation in 27 cases.

Most of the ethics violations involved violations of personal rights. This also includes the reporting by oe24.at and krone.at about the Vienna Terror Night on November 2, 2020, which was criticized by the press council. The publication of two videos was objected to. One shows the shooting of a passerby. The second shows a policeman being shot. A total of 1,500 complaints about terrorist reporting were received by the Press Council – also a negative record. oe24.at managing director Wolfgang Fellner described the complaint for his medium as a “wrong judgment” and announced legal action. The Fellner media have only been a member of the press council since 2017. The crown does not recognize the arbitration of the press council.

The press council stands by its decision and will not take it back, said Alexander Warzilek yesterday about the cause. A lawsuit has not yet been received and oe24.at has not resigned. (TT)

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