Journalistic Freedom of Speech in Taiwan, so tacky

Yes, I root for journalistic freedom of speech like any other person, but what is the deal with Taiwan’s journalism?!? Everyday on TV I see the most ridiculous kinds of news of the most emotionally illogical actions. Plus let’s say political news in particular, journalists blow a rumor out of proportion causing an extremely biased report. Then the questions they ask are so slanted too! Well, since I’m unclear of journalistic law, does anyone know if Taiwan has any slander or libel laws? It seems the news emphasizes on sexual conduct, inane occurances that amuse, petty crimes, and political and celebrity scandal. Sometimes it would be nice Then on TV, you hear the cellphones of reporters ringing in the middle of an interview. One thing I can’t understand is why there is barely any news on people doing good things? That’s when the concept of “media being a bad influence” comes in. Its not an excuse for doing bad things it is THE reason bad things happen. Whats the deal with journalism here?!? Just so unprofessional…

Originally posted by cyfhsu: Well, since I'm unclear of journalistic law, does anyone know if Taiwan has any slander or libel laws?

Yes, it does. With the legislative elections in just a couple of months, you should expect threats of lawsuits for slander/libel to pick up. But they usually seem to be about shutting people up, not about the truth. (What? Me cynical?)

Chen Shui-bian, for example, served eight months in prison over a libel case filed by that darling of Beijing, Elmer Fung, who very nearly became vice president. Chen had suggested, not without reason, that Fung plagiarized part of his dissertation.

–Cranky (don’t get me started about those puppies masquerading as reporters)

I think Taiwan has actually come pretty far in 10 years with regards to journalistic ethics. Most countries that emerge from one party rule and/or systems with no tradition of a “free press” have similar, if not worse, growing pains. One need only look across the strait to see how bad it could be. Or look back to the 19th century newspapers in Britain and the U.S., which printed rumours as fact and published outright lies to sell copy, influence domestic policy, goad governments into starting wars, etc. …

Taiwan’s press could be a lot better, but it could easily be a lot worse too.

What views do you have on the closing of the famous “Independence Evening Post” in Taipei? In previous eras, this was actually the leading voice of the opposition movement!

Is this closing a blow for press freedom in Taiwan?