By The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) has slapped fines on three digita
Phakdee Manawet, the NBTC’s deputy secretary general, said the producers of “Tuen Ma Khui” (“Wake Up to Talk”) on the MCOT HD channel and “Toop Toh Khao” (“Making News Conclusion”) on Amarin TV HD would be fined Bt50,000 each for airing content that lured viewers to speculate on the winning lottery numbers.
It is the first time the stations have faced fines, as academics have repeatedly warned that the type of TV shows that were broadcast encouraged viewers to be superstitious. In addition, the commission said that MCOT’s “Tuen Ma Khui” show would be fined an additional Bt50,000 for airing other content that affected public morality.
Regarding use of indecent language, another Bt50,000 fine was also imposed on Bright TV station’s “Khun Pak Yak Khui” (“Urging You to Talk”) show, which recently highlighted a discussion about sex with obscene words.
The NBTC also issued written warnings to three other digital TV stations – Channel 8, Thairath TV and Work Point – to avoid content that promoted superstition and lottery speculation.
Mana Trirayapiwat of the University of Thai Chamber of Commerce’s School of Communication Arts said the NBTC should step up its efforts to promote more creative TV content that better serves public interests and generates advertising revenues.
While applauding the move to set fines for superstitious and obscene content, he said the NBTC must be cautious in exercising its authority to regulate content, especially material concerning political and economic issues.
Under Article 37 of the NBTC Act, the regulatory body for both broadcasting and telecom services is empowered to ensure that no inappropriate content is aired.