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Tuesday, November 30, 2004

puja sinmun, kappu sinmun

Quite ironic that to back its own stand on the media (newspaper) policy and newspaper ownership and monopoly legislation, Ohmynews interviews a journalist from a Finnish newspaper which is monopolistic (think of Chosun, Joongang and Donga combined) and owned by the richest man in Finland, constantly expanding, and which would be the main target of media criticism by Ohmynews and reporter Sin Mee-hee.
If Son Seok-chun of Hankyoreh calls Chosun, Joongang and Donga puja sinmun, "rich newspapers", I don't know what this Finnish paper should be called, kappu sinmun?

The Ohmynews reporter seems to be worrying about the thing that the visiting reporter tells that newspaper editing is not completely free from the control of the owner and that the editorial policy reflects the views of the owner to some degree - thing that is seen quite natural here in the "newspaper paradise" where many important papers have been founded to back a political party or represent political or social interests.

Ok, the visiting reporter himself tells that his newspaper is a monopoly, so at least that is made clear for the Ohmy readers, and what the interviewee tells in the piece ends up not backing Ohmy position in any way.

By the way, taking the first quick look at the accompanying photograph I thought Ohmy was running an interview on Mr Oranckay.

Reporters Without Borders about the influence of two draft laws on freedom of the press: Two draft laws : one good, one bad for press freedom
Reporters Without Borders (Reporters sans frontières) welcomed a legislative reform plan to repeal the National Security Law that should benefit press freedom but urged withdrawal of a draft media law that would endanger free enterprise in the printed press. Both draft reforms to be put before parliament by the ruling Uri Party would have significant press freedom consequences, it said.
The worldwide press freedom organisation called on the Chairman of the Uri party, Lee Bu Young, to shelve the media reform law. While welcoming the repeal of the National Security Law, the organisation expressed concern about attempts by the majority to use the law to control the printed press sector.
"This law intended to curb the influence of the three major conservative dailies, looks more like ideological revenge that an attempt to regulate the news sector," said Robert Ménard in his letter to Lee Bu Young.
Reporters Without Borders is aware that a monopoly or an oligopoly is not desirable for pluralism of news and information, but South Koreans have a wide range of sources of news on top of the traditional dailies. [...]
It should be added though, that the proposed definition that the combined market share of 60% of three biggest dailies would constitute a monopoly position wouldn't mean forced reduction of circulation (who the heck could that be done anyway?) but by excluding the papers from certain favors. But to try to maintain that the law has nothing to do with the three particular major conservative dailies is something that even dogs and cows laugh at.

The first draft of the law included all the newspapers and not only national dailies, which gave the market share of only 44% for Chosun, Joongang and Donga, so the draft was amended to include only national dailies, which gave the three papers a market share of 68%.
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