Inaccuracy in News Report Violated Code, but Correction Already Aired, Says Canadian Broadcast Standards Council

Ottawa, December 20, 2017 – The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) today released its decision concerning a report broadcast on Global Edmonton’s (CITV-DT) Global News at 5 about the sentencing of an airline pilot.  The report erroneously stated that the pilot had been banned from flying for two years, when in fact it was one year.  The CBSC found the station in breach for the inaccuracy, but did not require it to announce that finding on air because it had already aired a correction.

The report was aired on April 4, 2017 and explained that a Sunwing pilot who had pleaded guilty for trying to fly with a blood alcohol level three times the legal limit had been sentenced.  The anchor stated that the pilot “has also been banned from operating any aircraft for two years”.  A viewer pointed out that other media outlets had reported that the pilot had been banned for only one year.  Global acknowledged the error and aired a correction to that effect on April 20.

The CBSC’s English-Language Panel examined the complaint and found that Global Edmonton breached the accuracy provisions of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ (CAB) Code of Ethics and the Radio Television Digital News Association of Canada’s (RTDNA) Code of Journalistic Ethics.  Global, however, met the requirements of Article 1.3 of the RTDNA Code by airing the correction.  The CBSC, therefore, did not require Global Edmonton to make an on-air announcement of its finding.

The CBSC was created in 1990 by Canada’s private broadcasters to administer the codes of standards that they established for their industry.  The CBSC currently administers 5 codes which deal with ethics, equitable portrayal, violence, news and journalistic independence.  Around 800 radio stations, satellite radio services, conventional and discretionary television services across Canada participate in the Council.

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All CBSC decisions, Codes, links to members’ and other web sites, and related information are available on the CBSC’s website at .  For more information, please contact the CBSC National Chair, Andrée Noël, at anoel@cbsc.ca or CBSC Executive Director, John MacNab, at jmacnab@cbsc.ca or by telephone at (613) 233-4607.