CTV Reporter Disguises His Opinion As News (December 29, 2011)
December 29, 2011
CTV Reporter Disguises His Opinion As News
By: Mike Fegelman, Executive Director December 29, 2011
Dear HonestReporting Canada Subscribers,
Objective journalists are required to embargo their personal opinions and report the news in a straight-forward and impartial manner. Yet many times, we’ve witnessed instances where a journalist’s individual biases creep into their reporting.
Case in point, on the December 27 broadcast of CTV News, Ottawa Bureau Chief Robert Fife crossed the line when he made the following heavily partisan anti-Israel comments:
“The only thing where Canada seems to be a bit offside on is Israel, we’re far too much in support of the Netanyahu government than almost every other Western government. His policy seems to be one of, yah we’ll talk a good game about wanting to negotiate with the Palestinians, but really we’re not going to do anything, we’re going to continue to build settlements. Just in Cannes, recently for example, the French President Sarkozy was overheard telling President Obama that Prime Minister Netanyahu was a “liar” and the President responded back well “you don’t get to deal with him like I have to all the time. It’s not easy. I think that is the one issue where Canada is really is a bit isolated.”
To view this report please click here or see below.
In making these statements, Mr. Fife cast aspersions on Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Israeli government to the point where he implied that Netanyahu was a “liar” who was being disingenuous with his peace overtures with the Palestinian Authority. To Mr. Fife, Netanyahu would rather build “settlements” than make peace with the Palestinians. As if he was a pundit, Mr. Fife was of the opinion that Canada is “offside on Israel” and that it’s “too much in support of Netanyahu“. His comments were not in attribution and we are therefore left to ask what right and on what foundation does this reporter have to make these prejudicial statements?
Bob Fife has clearly disguised his opinion as news in an effort to tar Israel. Given the seriousness of Mr. Fife’s violation of the basic principles of media objectivity, we contacted senior executives at CTV News to bring this matter to their attention and to ask how they will be dealing with this matter. We look forward to providing you with an update on how CTV will be handling this journalistic infraction from one of their senior journalists.