The association also questioned the swiftness with which the government acted on Tuesday, pulling the plug on ERT just hours after announcing its closure.
"The desire to reform and improve the quality of public services in the country is appreciated and respected, but the interruption of transmission and cutting of the power supply from ERT antennas by police forces, while a breaking news program was on air, just a few hours after the official announcement was made, is a shocking negation of press freedom and represents a danger to democracy."
Costas Douzinas: Pulling the plug on our flawed but vital state broadcaster is political vandalism, with chilling echoes of the bad old days
The government claimed that the closure was not linked to the fiscal gap but was part of the wider streamlining of the public sector. The 2,700 journalists and technicians summarily sacked assist on both counts. The government announcement said that the broadcaster suffers from a "unique lack of transparency and incredible waste". It is true that every time the government changed, managers and top journalists were appointed to pursue the new political agenda. But the blame lies squarely with the ruling New Democracy and Pasok parties, which ran the country like a private fiefdom for 40 years. It was their cronies and clients who inflated ERT's workforce.
When Nazi troops marched into Greece's nearly deserted capital on April 27, 1941, radio announcer Costas Stavropoulos of the Hellenic Broadcasting Corp. announced the grim news. He urged his countrymen and women not to listen to future Nazi radio transmissions and signed off with the Greek national anthem.
I am writing this letter so that you know what is going on in Istanbul. Mass media will not tell you any of this. Not in my country at least. Please post as many as articles as you see on the Internet and spread the word.
I do not belong to a political party. I don’t believe in politics. I don’t defend any ideology and I am not on the side of any regime. Like many others in Turkey I am tired and frustrated from the polarization between Kemalist seculars and the Islamists. I don’t belong to any of them. I believe in moving away from polarization and towards a new way of relating. I know many people who are out on the streets of Istanbul share the way I think and I know we are not the only ones. We just want to live our lives with human dignity.
As I was posting articles that explained what is happening in Istanbul on my Facebook page last night someone asked me the following question:
«What are you hoping to gain by complaining about our country to foreigners?»
This blog is my answer to her.
By so called «complaining» about my country I am hoping to gain:
Freedom of expression and speech,
Respect for human rights,
Control over the decisions I make concerning my on my body,
The right to legally congregate in any part of the city without being considered a terrorist.
But most of all by spreading the word to you, my friends who live in other parts of the world, I am hoping to get your awareness, support and help!
Θεμα ΕΡΤ. Παρακαλω να διαβαστει απο ολους ωστε να μην υπαρχουν αποριες και να μην μας κοροιδευουν τα ΜΜΕ αλλα ουτε και το πασοκ και η δημαρ οτι και καλα ειναι αντιθετοι στο κλεισιμο της ΕΡΤ. Το κειμενο στην φωτογραφια ειναι μια παραγραφος της 4ης αναθεωρησης του μνημονιου απο το ΔΝΤ. Λεει ξεκαθαρα, και αυτο το γνωριζαν διοτι το ψηφισαν ολοι οι μνημονιακοι, οτι θα κλεισουν δημοσιους τηλεοπτικους σταθμους (μαζι με αλλες 1500 δημοσιες επιχειρησεις). Μην ακουτε τα παραμυθια οτι δεν ηξεραν οι βενιζελοκουβεληδες. Ειναι κατευθυντηριος γραμμη του ΔΝΤ που περιλαμβανεται στο μνημονιο ΠΟΥ ΨΗΦΙΣΑΝ ΟΛΟΙ ΑΥΤΟΙ ΟΙ ΑΧΡΗΣΤΟΙ ΥΠΑΛΛΗΛΟΙ. Παραθετω το αυθεντικο pdf αρχειο στα σχολια.
The European Broadcasting Union has stepped in to help Greek TV journalists keep the country's state broadcaster on air after the government announced on Tuesday night it was closing it down as an austerity measure with immediate effect.
A number of ERT staff have defied the government order, staying overnight in the broadcaster's headquarters and managing to continue broadcasting a makeshift schedule of news and talk shows.
However, there are fears that police will move to empty the building, cut off power and seize all ERT equipment later on Wednesday.
ERT's TV and radio services went off air overnight, but had been broadcasting over the internet. "This is a blow to democracy," said ERT newsreader Antonis Alafogiorgos at the end of the main TV station's final broadcast.
The EBU, the body representing all of Europe's public service broadcasters, has set up a satellite news gathering operation in the carpark outside ERT's offices, enabling journalists to set up a makeshift TV service using equipment that has yet to be confiscated.
The socialist and moderate leftist parties supporting the coalition government had called the decision on ERT "unacceptable" and a government source said late Wednesday that Prime Minister Antonis Samaras would confer over the issue with his coalition partners.
"The prime minister, who always seeks dialogue, will telephone the political leaders for a meeting in the coming days," the government source said.
On Wednesday, the Prime Minister defended the move, saying: "We are eliminating a hotbed of opacity and waste... We are protecting the public interest."
The previous evening, ERT’s television and radio stations were pulled of air, leading to 2,700 members of staff losing their jobs, and the government has said that the broadcaster will reopen with around half the number of employees.
Leading union GSEE stated: “The ERT lockup amounts to a coup d’etat.”
#rbnews international was born within radiobubble out of a need to share underreported news about Greece with international audiences during a time of intense worldwide interest for this country. As people who have first-hand knowledge of the situation, we are dedicated to reporting developments in Greece while providing necessary political, economic, social and cultural background information to readers of this blog and listeners of the #rbnews international zone on the radio. The #rbnews team is comprised of citizen journalists who are based in various parts of Greece as well as abroad and provide regular and often exclusive coverage and commentary on events that shape Greece today, in nine languages: Greek, English, French, Spanish, Danish, Dutch, German, Italian and Portuguese.
Today the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) expressed profound dismay on behalf of Europe’s entire public service media community at reports that ERT – a founding Member of the EBU in 1950 – has been shut down with immediate effect. Emergency powers granted to the Finance Minister and the competent Minister have been used to stop ERT’s transmissions, leaving Greek citizens wishing to watch ERT programmes in front of black screens.
In a letter sent today to the Greek Prime Minister, Antonis Samaras, the President of the EBU, Jean Paul Philippot and the EBU Director General, Ingrid Deltenre urged Mr Samaras “to use all his powers to immediately reverse this decision”.
The existence of public service media and their independence from government lie at the heart of democratic societies, and therefore any far-reaching changes to the public media system should only be decided after an open and inclusive democratic debate in Parliament – and not through a simple agreement between two government ministers.
In the letter, the EBU stresses the importance of public service media as an essential pillar of democratic and pluralistic societies across Europe.
Who are the Media? ¶8. The private media outlets in Athens are owned by a small group of people who have made or inherited fortunes in shipping, banking, telecommunications, sports, oil, insurance, etc. and who are or have been related by blood, marriage, or adultery to political and government officials and/or other media and business magnates. For example, ship-owner and Mega Channel investor Vardis Vardinogiannis is the best friend of Christos Lambrakis, publisher of "To Vima," "Ta Nea," "Athens News," and the "in.gr" news portal, and Lambrakis has government construction contracts. Vardinoyannis's two children married into the Goulandris and Nomikos ship-owning families. His sister Eleni is married to ND MP Yannis Kefaloyannis who serves as special advisor to PM Karamanlis. ¶9. The Greek term "interwoven interests" refers specifically and exclusively to the web of relationships among the media, business, and government. The current Minister of the Merchant Marine commented recently that the government is a puppet that performs at the whim of the interwoven interests. (His comment amused neither the press magnates nor the Prime Minister, but he has somehow held onto his job.) The relationships are more complicated and incestuous than those among the gods, the demigods, and the human beings of Greek myth. (Note: post can email a simplified one-page chart on the media and their ownership to anyone who would like to have it.)
THE OFFICIAL GOVERNMENT STATEMENT With the excuse of transparency in money and logistics, the government spokeprson in summary informed the public that as of tonight the signal of ERT will be shut down! ERT EMPLOYEES REACT The employees of ERT refuse to shut down the national broadcaster and announce they will secure the live signal of ERT. They organize a special concert-protest outside the ERT hedquarters inviting all Athenians, all Greeks to join them.