South Korea’s broadcast regulator is pushing for disciplinary action against jTBC anchor Sohn Suk-hee for allegedly being biased while reporting on the government’s move to disband a leftist minority party, local media reported Friday.
According to Yonhap News Agency and Hankyoreh newspaper, the Korea Communications Standards Commission decided on Wednesday that the jTBC report on the United Progressive Party -- which was recently accused of pro-North activities -- was biased in favor of the UPP.
The KCSC said that the broadcaster failed to balance the opinions of both the proponents and opponents of the UPP. The commission will reach its final decision on Sohn next month.
Netizens on Friday were abuzz over the KCSC’s move. Many pointed out that states have no right to regulate media in such a strict manner.
“Is this the 1960s? Is the dictatorship back?” one netizen tweeted.
Sohn, a former front man of MBC, is considered one of the most influential figures in South Korean media.
According to a survey by local monthly news magazine Sisa IN, Sohn was selected the “most trusted journalist,” with 17.4 percent of respondents choosing him. KBS anchor Min Kyung-wook and KBS announcer Lee Keum-hee tied in second place with 1.7 percent support each.
By Yoon Min-sik