Doğan media bows to gov’t pressure? Top exec from pro-gov’t channel hired by CNNTürk

The post of general broadcasting manager of CNN Türk, an affiliate of the Doğan Media Group, has been assumed by Erdoğan Aktaş, who spent five years at the pro-government ATV channel.

The reshuffling within the Doğan Media Group, which has been receiving threats from pro-government figures who have told the daily’s owner, Aydın Doğan, to fire certain journalists deemed anti-government, continues with new dismissals and postings.

Kanal D, another affiliate of Doğan Media, sacked its General Broadcasting Manager Lale Eren, while General Manager Pelin Diştaş Yaşaroğlu resigned from her post on Tuesday.

Yaşaroğlu was replaced by Barış Tunay, general manager of CNN Türk. Tunay’s vacant post was filled by Aktaş, who spent five years until May 2014 as the general manager of ATV.

The reshuffling in the dailies and TV channels affiliated with the Doğan Media Group began following the Nov. 1 general election.

In previous weeks, the special adviser to Hürriyet Editor-in-Chief Bülent Mumay and veteran Hürriyet journalist Şükrü Küçükşahin were fired.

“I worked happily at Hürriyet for 17 years. I am not angry [at anyone] but I should admit that I am saddened. The person who employed me at Hürriyet was Sedat Ergin and the person who informed me [about my dismissal] this morning was also Sedat Ergin. I should call this a coincidence. I would like to thank the Hürriyet family,” Küçükşahin wrote in a series of tweets on Dec. 2.

The daily has also been receiving threats from pro-government figures, who have told the daily’s owner, Aydın Doğan, to fire certain journalists deemed to be anti-government.

Pro-government Star daily columnist Cem Küçük told media mogul Doğan, “From now on, we will manage you,” while ordering him to fire certain journalists during a TV program aired on Nov. 4.

Doğan, owner of the Doğan Media Group, was threatened live on the television program by Küçük, who said that if he does not fire journalists Nazlı Ilıcak, Eyüp Can and Mumay, he will have to “bear the consequences.”

About yavuzbaydar

Yavuz Baydar has been an award-winning Turkish journalist, whose professional activity spans nearly four decades. In December 2013, Baydar co-founded the independent media platform, P24, Punto24, to monitor the media sector of Turkey, as well as organizing surveys, and training workshops. Baydar wrote opinion columns, in Turkish, liberal daily Ozgur Dusunce and news site Haberdar, and in English, daily Today's Zaman, on domestic and foreign policy issues related to Turkey, and media matters, until all had to cease publications due to growing political oppression. Currently, he writes regular chronicles for Die Süddeutsche Zeitung, and opinion columns for the Arab Weekly, as well as analysis for Index on Censorship. Baydar blogs with the Huffington Post, sharing his his analysis and views on Turkish politics, the Middle East, Balkans, Europe, U.S-Turkish relations, human rights, free speech, press freedom, history, etc. His opinion articles appeared at the New York Times, the Guardian, El Pais, Svenska Dagbladet, and Al Jazeera English online. Turkey’s first news ombudsman, beginning at Milliyet daily in 1999, Baydar worked in the same role as reader representative until 2014. His work included reader complaints with content, and commentary on media ethics. Working in a tough professional climate had its costs: he was twice forced to leave his job, after his self-critical columns on journalistic flaws and fabricated news stories. Baydar worked as producer and news presenter in Swedish Radio &TV Corp. (SR) Stockholm, Sweden between 1979-1991; as correspondent for Scandinavia and Baltics for Turkish daily Cumhuriyet between 1980-1992, and the BBC World Service, in early 1990's. Returning to Turkey in 1994, he worked as reporter and ediytor for various outlets in print, as well as hosting debate porogrammes in public and private TV channels. Baydar studied informatics, cybernetics and, later, had his journalism ediucatiob in the University of Stockholm. Baydar served as president of the U.S. based International Organizaton of News Ombudsmen (ONO) in 2003. He was a Knight-Wallace Fellow at University of Michigan in 2004. Baydar was given the Special Award of the European Press Prize (EPP), for 'excellence in journalism', along with the Guardian and Der Spiegel in 2014. He won the Umbria Journalism Award in March 2014 and Caravella/Mare Nostrum Prize in 2015; both in Italy. Baydar completed an extensive research on self-censorship, corruption in media, and growing threats over journalism in Turkey as a Shorenstein Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.
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