Turkey's TRT recruits for its English channel while media freedom deteriorates domestically.

Posted: 14 Nov 2015   Print   Send a link

The Express Tribune (Karachi), 10 Nov 2015: “Turkey’s state broadcaster TRT (Turkish Radio and Television Corporation) has kicked off a recruitment drive in Pakistan in a bid to lure media professionals for its new English news channel, TRT World — a channel that aims to rival the likes of Al Jazeera, BBC and CNN. TRT World, which will offer English news services around the clock, will join 15 others operated by TRT, including an Arabic-language and Kurdish-language channel. The Express Tribune has come to learn that TRT is currently interviewing Pakistan’s top journalist and editors for its new English-language project, TRT World. … Since English speakers are hard to find in its own country, TRT is recruiting heavily in the Pakistani market. One prospective employee said that they are offering very lucrative salaries with excellent perks. ‘Recruiting Pakistani journalists is an innovative idea. Which Pakistani wouldn’t grab the chance to go live and work in Istanbul?’ founder and publisher of The Express Tribune Bilal Lakhani said, while commenting on the development. … Further, Bilal said TRTWorld is also not breaking new ground entirely. ‘Voice of America recruits Pakistanis to work for its network based in Washington DC,’ he said. … The Istanbul-based channel will have studios in Kuala Lumpur, Washington, DC and London. TRT Deputy Director-General İbrahim Eren said in an earlier interview with TRT Haber channel that TRT World would offer a different perspective than major news stations such as CNN, Al-Jazeera and the BBC. ‘It will offer Turkey’s point of view on current events. Rather than promoting Turkey, we aim to show the audience how we interpret the current affairs,’ he said.” KIM: “Interpret” may mean emphasizing some news stories, avoiding or ignoring other stories, a tactic employed by many prominent international broadcasters.

Screen Africa, 3 Nov 2015: “On 28 October, [South Africa-based] eNews Channel Africa (eNCA) announced that its Group News editor Ben Said will be leaving the channel. Said has been offered and accepted a senior position with TRT World, a new English-language global news channel based in Istanbul, Turkey. This comes after several eNCA staff have been recruited by international news organisations including CNN, Al Jazeera and CCTV [China] among others in recent years.”

Index on Censorship, 12 Nov 2015: “Media freedom has declined considerably during President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s tenure, and it hasn’t gone unnoticed.”