The National Communications Commission (NCC) yesterday said that it has received six to seven complaints since Friday last week from the public about media coverage of the derailment of Taroko Express No. 408, and an independent panel is examining footage to see if broadcasting regulations have been breached.
Lee Yi-hsiang (李義祥), a worker at a construction site, has been linked to a crane truck that slid down a slope onto the railway tracks, leading to the fatal crash.
Some complaints said that TV news shows accused him of lying about going to the construction site alone by showing a photograph of him standing next to other people, without verifying whether those people were workers or passengers from the crashed train, the commission said.
Many passengers have since come forward and clarified that it was them in the images, it said.
Some people complained about excessive coverage of the tragedy, while others asked if the news media’s disclosure of personal information of passengers might have contravened the Personal Data Information Protection Act (個人資料保護法), the commission said.
A political talk show compared the derailment to scenes in the South Korean film Train to Busan, which also drew complaints from viewers, it said.
“We have urged the broadcast media to exercise self-restraint when covering the tragic accident to avoid causing emotional harm to the victims and their families a second time,” NCC Vice Chairman and spokesperson Wong Po-tsung (翁柏宗) said.
“We have noticed that some of them collected information from the Facebook accounts of victims, which is really not appropriate,” Wong said.
“They should also verify information before airing it, per the requirements of the Satellite Broadcasting Act (衛星廣播電視法),” he said.
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