'A Journalism Reflex' by CNN Turk: Interrupting Opposition Candidate, Putting Erdoğan on Air

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Main opposition Republican People's Party's candidate for the Metropolitan Municipality of İstanbul, Ekrem İmamoğlu was the guest of the "40 with Buket Aydın" program on CNN Turk, ahead of the March 31 local elections.

While İmamoğlu was answering the 13th of the 40 questions, CNN Turk interrupted the program and began to broadcast President and Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chair Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's speech.

Erdoğan was speaking at the "Goodness Awards" event, which has been held by the Diyanet (Religion) Foundation.

"Why so sensitive?"

At the moment of the interruption, İmamoğlu was giving his reply to the question, "Why are the CHP voters so sensitive about the election security?"

Ignore the sneering emphasis on the word "sensitive," it was a question that needed to be asked. Interruption of the broadcast while İmamoğlu was speaking was actually an answer for the question.

The TV channel and host Buket Aydın was protested on the social media with the hashtag #SansürcüCNNTürk (CNN Türk censors).

"It was a recorded broadcast"

Responding to the criticism on Twitter, Aydın said that the program was a recorded broadcast, hence she was not able to announce that they will give a break. "The program will resume shortly from where it left off," she added.

It is an understandable journalism reflex to interrupt a broadcast when there is a momentous development. CNN Türk was able to catch up with Erdoğan's "momentous words." He was saying, "Dear precious executives of the Diyanet Foundation, dear precious members of the Diyanet community..." at the moment when the CNN Türk began to broadcast his speech.

Is it a journalism reflex?

Buket Aydın probably was not able to understand why she was being protested for "showing a journalism reflex."

She said that she was not able to understand why the CHP supporters began a campaign on social media, using the hashtag "Media embargo on İmamoğlu," also mentioning Aydın's account in their tweets. She said, "Let's not call this a lynch, but something began," and then asked her third question: "Why did you use the 'Media embargo on İmamoğlu' hashtag?

İmamoğlu replied in meaning, "If such public opinion exists, don't you need you to ask this question to yourself?"

And Buket Aydın showed why she deserved those tweets, after interrupting İmamoğlu ten questions later. (HK/VK)

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