tv Listening Post Al Jazeera March 20, 2016 12:30pm-1:01pm EDT
action worldwide keeps the momentum going to address an issue that's affecting us all. gerald tan, al jazeera. >> a quick reminder, keep up with the stories we are reporting on by checking our website. the address on that is al jazeera .com. are at the listening post and some stories we are looking at this week, pressure ramps up in the streets against dilma rousseff. south africa a complex relationship between zuma government and news out lets in the count interest i and he may be getting more coverage than any one else in the election race but donald trump definitely
does not like the media. >> they are the worse. >> reporter: in the past week brasilia had wall to wall coverage of a playel scandal threatening to bring down the country government. last sunday more than a million people demanded the removal and impeachment of president dilma rousseff. it was the latest development in a two-year long story, an investigation which was operation car wash. the investigation centers on a billion dollar corruption scandal at brazil's oil corporation and has touched many of president dilma rousseff's close associates and from theyed the news in brazil and brought bias of mainstream media star e startled startled. and dilma rousseff is the second to be elected in brazil and she and workers party camp -- complain they are been in a monopoly and the story is not easy for the dilma rousseff
government and has waves of reporting but those watching the news there is suspicion that the coverage has just as much to do as pushing the political divide as it has to do with the corruption scandal. the listening post now on the role the media is playing in brazil's political crisis. on sunday the 13th of march brazil's largest broadcaster tv global suspended its regular programming to cover protests across the country. the media had spent a lot of air time in the run up urging people to take to the streets to demand the impeachment of president dilma rousseff. >> impeachment. >> reporter: dilma rousseff is not under investigation and at protests says a lot of brazil politics, society and its media.
>> demographic profile of media who went to the streets last sunday is very particular and upper middle class, white, from the southeastern part of brazil. i mean the richest part of brazil so there a bunch of very discontent white middle class folks who do not like the workers party from the beginning i guess and this sentiment has been set and also augmented or increased by the media. >> and there was one photograph that went viral on brazil media and it was absolutely outstanding with a middle age, middle class couple going to the demonstrations and right behind them there was the nanny and pushing the toddlers and that said you know you can protest and a lot of people drinking champaign and it was a bit of a demonstrati demonstration but has to take care of others in the middle and this in a nutshell is the portrait of brazil society and if you don't understand that you don't understand nothing going
on at the moment. >> reporter: brazil is a country of 200 million and the deep social divide at the heart of national politics. for over a decade the left wing workers party led by de-silva had economic and social change. media system however remained remarkably untouched, five families among the richest in brazil control 70% of the mainstream media. and global owned runs the t.v. global network and another family owns the one that has news weekly. all five families have been part of brazil establishment the ruling class for decades. and neither dilma rousseff pushed for this in the landscape
and houses remain unmoved. >> there is a sense that a lot of the media owners have not been capable of living change as they feel too threatened with everything that is happening, any type of eyed ideology is criticized. >> translator: what the current political crisis does is intensify people's emotions and the country split into very clear groups and the debate becomes insane, this is a very serious problem, the traditional media started to become a target of the current animosity. if you can identify a particular political leaning in one news outlet or another the other side's view point will never be omitted and this would never happen as it does on social media because the press is committed to listening to all sides. >> reporter: corruption is not a new story in brazil, however no
investigation has been as big as operation car wash, at the center of the scandal is the oil petrol brace and accused of taking bribes abmaking political donations and president dilma rousseff was head of the corporation between 2003-2010 and cleared of any wrongdoing but members of her government are under scrutiny including mentor and predecessor de-selva and big cover ridge and news spurred further by the head of the investigation. it would seem as though the strategy was set out a decade ago before operation car wash even began. in 2004 he wrote an article about another investigation in italy called clean hands. that campaign's success was rooted in how investigators used the media to intoxicated the political atmosphere. >> in their particular inside is
the media has to be used or has to work together with a judiciary against the government to discredit government so that would the only way to actually get hold of the corrupt politicians and put them in jail. and it's secret and always leaked and the media accused people beforehand before investigations concluded so these people have the garbage. they are tried by the public opinion way before they have an actual trial. >> translator: why are there so many leaks? well this is a typically brazilian way of conducting these things. there is always a backdoor, a leak. what we do is to produce coverage that is the most accurate in the sense that we don't prejudge. there is an opinion section in the newspaper that is reserved to showing the newspaper's views but to ask who worked with
journalist coverage we limit our reporting to the facts. >> reporter: not everyone agrees with assessment. over the past two years the news magazine's vision have been criticized for the thin reporting on the story, a journalist in south palo wrote a lengthy piece accusing the magazines for vague implications and no documentary evidence and during an evening bulletin they stood behind one correspondent saying they want to insight a country. >> people have been more conscious about is the ways in which sectors of the media are trying to make political advantage of this issue and thus force an impeachment, force a type of soft coup, now through the justice systems. >> shotty journalism because there is no proof and innuendo and for the developing world this is the most important
stories of the past few years and foreseeable future because it's a corruption war and political economic crisis mixed with an information war at the same time so everybody has to pay attention >> our american story is written everyday. it's not always pretty, but it's real... and we show you like no-one else can. this is our american story. this is america tonight.
in a span of three weeks at least three journalists have documented being roughed up while covering trump events. cbs news was briefly arrested as he covered clashes between protesters and trump supporters in chicago. and h february journalist christopher morris to the ground by secret agent for stepping out of the media part in a trump rally and the most controversial is this one that took place the beginning of march. >> what was his name? you should have felt how hard he grabbed me. >> reporter: it's michelle fields working with bright bart and said campaign manager forcibly pushed her when she asked a question and other journalists confirmed field's story but is not backing its reporter. six members of staff resigned from the site in protest against the lack of support for fields in what they say is a protrump
bias. two australian journalists have been deported and leading news site shut down in malaysia as media investigations into corruption of prime minister have intensified. what lmalaysia published on the 14th of march and editor cited commercial reasons but an article in the uk guardian wrote the threat of being accused of sedation and possible jail time imprisoned us in our minds as malaysia and the government blocked access to the website last month after it reported on the story of state investment funds being syphoned off in the bank account. antiterrorism measures by the government and last week to clamp down on palestinian media. on march 11 israeli forces stormed the offices of palestine
today, a t.v. station based in ramallah in the occupied west bank arrested three staff and confiscating their equipment. israel accuses the channel of broadcasting inflammatory material and encouraging palestinians to attack israelis and also say the channel is the media arm of islamic jihad a palestinian movement out lawed in israel and another t.v. station has been dropped by french satellite giant utel after a formal request from israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu and they say they will continue broadcasting on a new satellite frequency. a few weeks back we aired a report on transformation, the extent of racial integration in south africa news media since end of apartheid and this week we go back to look at the relationship between president zuma and good evening and media and zuma generates a lot of bad press in south africa from the state of economy to the broad
sides against leadership and the controversial 20 million dollars upgrade of his private homestead but zuma is not without allies in the media and there is a state owned south african broadcasting corporation the most influential news out let in the country frequently accused of pro-government bias and his close relationship with the influential business family gouptas has friendly coverage in the out lets they own and there is the independent media group which critics say doesn't necessarily report favorably on the president as much as it goes after the main opposition group, the democrating alliance. these are tense times under zuma presidency and race relations are fraud and corruption is rife and the local elections just rounds the corner will be a test of the ruling african national congress parties appeal which shows signs of waning and for the president more than ever controlling the message is essential. listening post nick reports from
cape town. >> reporter: what do a plot and south africa airline, a newspaper called the new age and the country's president jacob zuma all have in common? the answer is they can all be links to a wealthy business family in south africa the gouptas and the new age newspaper they own. >> the family is a very influential family in south african politics and arrived in south africa in 1994 and created a series of relationships with prominent individuals, a very personal relationship with president jacob zuma and when they launched the media company in 2010 they were vocal in pro-government. >> it seems like that is a quid proquo and the logical way to read it and we get lots of tenders but in return we have
media that is sympathetic to them and the president and the most obvious case is now that president zuma has been talking about a nuclear energy contract with the russians which is very contentious in south africa and yet the gouptas are extraordinary well positioned and suddenly are owners of uranium deposits and minds in south africa. the other obvious sign of connection between government and the goupta media empire is that the newspaper, the new age which is a tiny circulation and yet it's available free on the state airline. >> reporter: the sas is in financial trouble, in 2013-14 financial year it reported $163 million loss but over recent four-year period it spent $900,000 buying copies of the new age newspaper. then there is what the government spends and between 2013-14 was over 70 thousand
dollars which is what it spend on a much bigger paper which reportedly has ten times the readership and another state funded money for the paper and organizes a business breakfast aired on the forecast of the abc for free and they sponsor the events but the money roughly a million dollars a year doesn't go to the sabc, it goes to the new age newspaper. >> these breakfast briefings take place, it is hosted by the new age, it is broadcasted on the sabc and sponsored by a third party. that third-party is usually state owned entities. >> and today we want to say thank you to trans net because with their support that is why you got all this lovely food on your tables today instead of just bread and water. >> reporter: economy is struggling and an environment where state owned entities are not able to meet their mandate, they are spending that amount of
money in hosting opoliticiansand departments. and the question always was why does sabc have to have these breakfast briefings with new age attached to it, this is lucrative for new age as well. >> the family identified a gap and they did not do it secretly. they old everyone when they launched this publication five years ago that they were going to look favorably at government at least juxtapose with so called media that is objective and know exactly where their political allegiance lies. supporters frequently accuse the privately owned media the newspaper as serving as the opposition in south africa.
the papers are seen to back opposition leaders like helen by attacking the anc relentlessly and the democratic alliance or da took control of the general election, the first time the ruling antiparty lost control of the providence since coming in power and using ground to da ever since. in may south africans head back to the polls in local elections and there is a feeling here in cape town that anc is putting them on defensive in the own backyard and anc is doing their dirty work. in 2013 the independent media group which owns the cape town and two popular dailies in the providence got a new owner investment holdings and founded by a doctor who once served as mandela's physician they have close ties to ruling anc party and the take over was largely financed by the pension fund and
noticed a change in the editorial stance of the independent newspapers. >> definitely an attempt to reorientate the agenda of independent newspapers, whether that is a good or bad thing one could well argue that it adds to media diversity in south africa. i mean before the take over we had four large corporations that largely had the same editorial perspective on society. of course in a democracy they should be multiple foreign agendas and diverse ownership. >> the times regularly attack the opposition party and are the front page leads with big headlines about the leader of the opposition in the cape, the premier of the province and her spooks and spies and what story which didn't seem to stand up to the degree they did it. >> it was a perception in the
western cape that the cape had a particular to favor any more what she did. she threatened the capes to withdraw their government to their particular people. now will was a lay attempt. >> reporter: while south after newspapers are gender setters they are pale to the broadcaster sabc where critics say the anc doesn't have a grip but a strangle hold and have been 8ceos averaging one a year and the current chief operating officer reportedly gave journalists 70% happy news quota ahead of general election stories to help get the ruling party reelected and last month phone calls on radio talk shows were ban because callers were critical of government and leadership and sabc has denied
that claim. >> we do see on the sabc editorial decisions that seem to come out of the blue, outside of the formal editorial decision making structure, guests on the talk shows, programs are cancelled, there is a refusal to screen documentaries that are critical of the state and the ruling party. >> the public broadcasters are just one particular example of state capture of media institution. at the same time there is a threat to media organizations, journalists intimated all the time by politicians, journalists are obstructed in their work and so it's really important for media and journalists, for media activists for freedom of expression activists to be glad closely. >> the media are one of the few institutions able to hold power to account in south africa but
with jacob zuma and government parliament. >> you are the president are not an honorable man. >> reporter: on the streets. [chanting] and even at home the media are being pushed to tow the line and while some news outlets can be brought to the caret those who rebel could face the stake. >> reporter: in the process of putting together that report we contacted both the south african government and the sabc to get their comments and neither got back to us however the new adjust newspaper and independent media did respond. new age told us that the paper is, quote, broadly supportive of the government, however, journalists are independent and critical and opposition may change with changes in government. regarding the revenue news from state advising the paper spokesman said the amount is not a significant percentage of their total ad income and clarified the sabc retains all the ad revenue
for the breakfast briefings and the content officer brown took issue of the basis of our story, on specifics she said the investment of government pension funds into the company had no significant meaning since state funds are invested in other media companies as well. she also denied that the cape times or any other affiliated titles reported negatively on the opposition.
finally as we said earlier in the show donald trump's alleys are getting tougher for journalists to handle but that has not had impact on the volume of media coverage he is getting, according to a study published in the new york times it out strips not only his republican rivals but all the candidates combined, the "new york times" valued the coverage at nearly $2 billion, that is air time that
has been garnered purely off the bank of trump's outrageous statements talks how he wins at everything, mocking competitors and slamming immigrants and muslims. the media are regular targets as well so we look through footage of trump's rallies and debates to put together this compilation of the thoughts on the media and we will see you next time on the listening post. >> still driving the debates and leading big in the polls and smacking the media around. >> don't ask me questions like that, you're not a very good reporter doing that. that is a typical case of the press with misinterpretation. every week i go up up up and every week the idiots on television was written by a nice reporter and see the guy, i don't know what i said, i don't remember. and they do get good ratings. >> the media is going nuclear on you and nbc and c in.
this. >> do you know what is interesting about campbell brown for years i have not heard it and didn't know she was still alive but i guess she is. you will find out about the media some day folks they are the worst. by way i hate some of these people but i would never kill them. i hate them. i will be honest i will never kill them. no i won't. what is really going to be fun i'm suing univision for 500 >> i can neither confirm nor deny that there's a "dark prison". >> they don't want anyone to know what is going on inside. >> he was not just a person, he was a human being. >> "faultlines". >> what do we want? >> al jazeera america's hard-hitting... >> today the will be arrested. >> ground-breaking... >> they're firing canisters of gas at us. >> emmy award-winning, investigative series.