The National Communications Commission (NCC) yesterday said it would send an official letter to SET-TV asking the station to explain its coverage of a job fair in New Taipei City (新北市) on Labor Day.
In the coverage, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) was seen visiting the job fair hosted by the Council of Labor Affairs on Sunday and stopping at a booth for restaurant Din Tai Fung. Ma then pleads for a job at the restaurant on behalf of a “job applicant” visiting the booth.
However, the SET-TV reporter later discovered that the “applicant” was already an employee at Din Tai Fung.
This was an “embarrassment,” as both Ma and Council of Labor Affairs Minister Jennifer Wang (王如玄) unwittingly helped a “fake” jobseeker, the reporter said.
The station labeled the news “exclusive coverage.”
Din Tai Fung said it was simply cooperating with a request from TV news reporters for a video shot showing people applying for a job at the fair, adding that the company was “shocked and bewildered” by the coverage.
The council also issued a statement lambasting SET-TV for a report it said violated journalistic ethics.
“A certain TV station required a [Din Tai Fung] employee to pose as a job applicant so they could get a shot showing how government officials interacted with jobseekers,” the council said. “The company followed the reporter’s request, but the TV station then proceeded to ridicule the government officials by making them appear oblivious to the arrangement.”
The commission’s Department of Communication Content Director Jason Ho (何吉森) said the news story was aired between 6:25pm and 6:28pm on Sunday.
Asked whether the commission considered the coverage to be a fabricated story, Ho said the decision would be made after receiving SET TV’s explanation.
NCC spokesperson Chen Jeng-chang (陳正倉) said the commission had the power to insist SET correct the coverage within 20 days of its airing, as per Article 30 of the Satellite Broadcasting Act (衛星廣播電視法).
The same article also requires TV stations to respond in writing within 20 days on whether they believe the report in question to have been accurate.
“We could turn the case over to an independent content review committee if necessary,” Chen said.
A newspaper journalist who was also covering the job fair told the Taipei Times they were told beforehand that Ma would make a stop at the Din Tai Fung booth. Several TV news reporters then asked a Din Tai Fung employee to pose as a jobseeker for a shoot, she said.
However, the SET-TV reporter was nowhere near the booth when the request was made, she said.
SET stood by its reporter.
“The reporter covered the story based on the facts,” SET spokesperson Chang Cheng-fen (張正芬) said. “The Din Tai Fung employee admitted she was asked to pose as a job seeker after the reporter saw her wearing a work uniform after the interview.”
At a separate venue, Wang said she and Ma did not know of the request to the employee.
“I hope media coverage will be more truthful in the future so as not to discredit all the hard work that I and other employees at the council have done to improve the lot of workers,” Wang said.
The time taken to prepare a response to such a report was time she could not spend working toward improving workers’ conditions, she said.
Additional reporting by Jake Chung
Ninth graders were asked to define “trolling” on this year’s standardized exam, reflecting efforts to make the test better reflect real-life situations. Adjustments to this year’s Comprehensive Assessment Program for Junior High School Students were revealed on Sunday, after the last cohort of students completed the test over the weekend. The Ministry of Education solicited feedback about the test from teachers, who approved of the new question in the English portion. Not only was question No. 20 “very much in line with real-life situations,” but it also used a new style in which students were asked to ascertain the correct dictionary definition based
Taiwan is on alert for monkeypox, a rare viral disease that has caused 87 infections in 11 countries over the past three weeks, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said on Saturday. The WHO on Friday convened an emergency session to discuss a sudden outbreak of monkeypox in North America and Europe. Since the beginning of this month, 87 confirmed cases and 28 possible cases have been identified in 11 countries. The countries with the highest case counts are England with 29 cases, and Portugal and Spain with 23 each. Monkeypox is a viral zoonotic disease occurring primarily in the tropical rainforest areas
ADAPTING: The CECC said the policy change would happen this week at the earliest, while PCR testing stations would be used to diagnose people and prescribe drugs The general public would be able to use a positive rapid test result that has been confirmed by a doctor for COVID-19 diagnosis starting later this week at the soonest, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, as it reported 79,441 new local infections and 53 deaths. The center on Saturday announced that it was expanding the rapid test diagnosis policy to people living in indigenous townships and outlying islands, starting today. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, yesterday said the policy might be further expanded to include “all people” this week, at the soonest. He
About 47 percent of people whose deaths were related to COVID-19 this year have died within three days of testing positive, while 33 percent died within three to seven days, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Deputy Director-General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥), the center’s spokesman, said 66,247 new local cases, 36 imported cases and 40 deaths were confirmed yesterday. As the number of daily confirmed cases has dropped in the past four days, from 90,331 cases on Thursday last week to 66,247 cases yesterday, the center was asked if Taiwan has reached the peak of a