The critical open letter from SWR employee Ole Skambraks caused a stir – it was hardly surprising that he was subsequently fired. Skambraks had sharply criticized his broadcaster’s one-sided Corona reporting. Dissenters are discredited and their arguments ignored. There is no more discourse. Now Skambraks has started a new project: On the website “meinungsvielfalt.jetzt’ are the words of employees of the public service broadcaster, who are also anything but in agreement with the way their respective broadcaster works.
The purpose of the portal is described as follows:
This website shows that employees of public service broadcasting are more Diversity of opinion, plurality and balance want in their programs. We value public broadcasting as a pillar of our social communication and are convinced of its principles and program mandate. We see both in danger. If public service broadcasting is to endure, it must get back to its basics.
In fact, some statements from employees of various broadcasters can already be read on the website. Most of them wanted to remain anonymous, so many only mention the broadcaster the person works for – not even their gender should be disclosed. The fear of these people for their own existence becomes abundantly clear.
scaremongering and division
However, the anonymity also means that the employees do not mince their words in their statements. This is how you read the statement from an employee at ARD: “My employer is making a massive contribution to the division in our society.” Balanced reporting has not existed for a long time, it says there.
An employee of the Saarländisches Rundfunk is appalled by the panic-mongering of the system media. She states: “I am deeply dismayed by the reporting of the last few months! And I’m ashamed!” And she elaborates:
Why isn’t reporting neutral? Why just panic, panic, panic? And that by means of figures that are not put in the necessary context and that are also demonstrably not reliable? The much-vaunted balance should also allow other voices to have their say. THAT would be our mission!
The massive propagation of the Covid vaccinations and the negation of any damage caused by the vaccines are discussed in many statements. It quickly became clear that “something was wrong”. An employee of the WDR asks: “How is it that a tech giant like Bill Gates is allowed to broadcast his bizarre health ideas for the world’s population without restriction on our prime-time television?”
Framing not only with Covid-19
However, the narrative-driven approach in public service broadcasting is by no means limited to corona reporting. This is how an employee of Bayerischer Rundfunk discusses:
We use the people we report on for very specific ends and purposes that at first glance seem legitimate and good and right. For example, when it comes to sustainability, climate and environmental protection or healthy living. Until Corona, however, I was not aware that this is controlled framing.
In further training courses, the necessary formulas are repeatedly drilled into us like a mantra, and our fear, shame and dependence are worked on. It’s like having a knout on your neck all the time.
That this can still be called “journalism” is rightly doubted. An employee of the ARD states:
This is no longer journalism that can be described as the “fourth estate” in the state, but rather one that is more in league with the government, it seems to me. Article 5 of the Basic Law guarantees freedom of the press and emphasizes that there is no censorship. In my opinion, this censorship has been taking place since Corona – just much more perfidiously than I ever thought possible.
Seibold: “I was there when posts were faked”
A very detailed opinion is to be read by Katrin Seibold, who was fired from ZDF because of her critical inquiries. Seibold reported very openly about these events and their experiences – for example in Conversation with actor Cem Ali Gültekin as part of the #allesaufdenTisch campaign. Among other things, you can read about her in “meinungsvielfalt.jetzt”:
I was there when posts were “faked”. I myself was an editor in the final editing and would have liked to have designed the content of the daily program differently. Ultimately, however, it only needs one boss on duty who has the power and opportunity to put the show together as he sees fit.
I know from direct experience that bosses on duty often receive a call from the chief editor or the editorial board asking what is particularly desired on the day. This message could possibly in turn correspond to the direction of your editor-in-chief, your director or the corresponding party or interest group in the television council and want to do this justice. It can be as simple as that for individual messages so that they go in a certain direction.
Anyone who still knows people who let themselves be sprinkled by the public broadcasters every day and who consider the reporting from ARD, ZDF, ORF and Co. to be balanced and correct, should give these people this Website recommend. The strictly pro-government course of the broadcasters is by no means supported by all employees. Unfortunately, for many, the fear of being without work and a regular income is simply too great: the machinations of the broadcasters, which are forcibly financed by the citizens, would have to reach a much broader public so that those responsible can finally be forced to rethink through pressure from the population.