Media Watch on Hate Speech and Discriminatory Language Report Has Been Released

Media Watch on Hate Speech and Discriminatory Language Report Has Been Released
Event date: 
Tue, 2014-01-07 12:30
Media Watch on Hate Speech Project is carried out by the Hrant Dink Foundation since 2009 with the aim of combatting racism, discrimination and intolerance in Turkey.
Taking into account the importance of the media, as one of the instruments for producing and reproducing racism, discrimination and alienation, the specific goal of this study is to foster printed media’s respect for human rights and differences, draw attention to the racist and discriminatory language used in news articles and columns and thereby raise awareness and encourage the print media to stop engaging in hateful discourse.
In the scope of the Project, we publish periodical reports every four months based on the findings of our media monitoring work. 
The media watch report covering the months May - August 2013 includes three sections; the first section is based on news stories and columns that resort to hate speech against individuals and groups based on their ethnic and religious identities, the second section is based on content targeting LGBT individuals and women. Finally the third section included media watch on discriminating discourse about Gezi Events. 
On hate speech part of the report in the period between May – August 2013 while a fall has been observed in news items featuring hate speech compared to previous periods, more groups have been targeted. 
Majority of hate speech content took place in the national press and again, similar to the previous periods, columns constituted the genre where hateful discourse was encountered most frequently. Armenians constituted the most frequent targets of hate speech followed by Jews and Christians, in rank order. Related to actual agenda of Turkey we observed new categories such as “Syrian refugees”. 
In the content targeting LGBT individuals and women, significant increase in the number of articles was examined in this period that we can explain within the context of Gezi Events and the issue of homosexual marriage on UK’s agenda.
For the discriminatory discourse analysis of the report, all types of items regarding the Gezi Protests were monitored during the first week of Gezi Events (1-7 June 2013) in Habertürk, Hürriyet, Radikal, Sabah, Sözcü, Özgür Gündem, Taraf, Yeni Şafak and Zaman dailies. The research findings showed that there is not a significant relationship between the production of discriminatory discourse and the overall stance of the newspapers towards Gezi Events. All papers used discriminatory discourse surrounding different subjects and in different ways. However, direct discriminatory discourse, which involved fostering enmity, targeting, denigration and sole opposition, was more frequently observed in newspapers with a critical stance against Gezi Events. Meanwhile, indirect discriminatory discourse, which involved rhetoric of democracy built on the accusation/remonstration of groups with different views about the requirements of a democracy, was most frequently encountered in papers supportive of the Gezi Events.