CBC News Clarifies How it Uses The Word “Terrorist” Following Last Week Criticisms

Early last week I reported how CBC is being criticized for instructing its employees not to refer to anyone in Hamas as a terrorist even though Hamas is a recognized terrorist group in Canada and other nations.

This morning, the CBC’s Editor in Chief, Brodie Fenlon shared his email response to someone about “how CBC News uses the words ‘terrorist,’ ‘terrorism.”

In summary, Fenlon explains that the news organization is committed to using these words with care and precision. He notes that the terms are often used in a way that is vague and imprecise and that this can lead to confusion and misunderstanding. Fenlon makes it clear that:

“CBC News does not itself designate specific groups as terrorists, or specific acts as terrorism, regardless of the region or the events, because these words are so loaded with meaning, politics and emotion that they can end up being impediments to our journalism.

CBC News is independent of any and all governments, yet we and other news organizations have been regularly lobbied over the years by many opposing groups to label certain people or acts of violence as terrorism — precisely because the word is so important to them and carries so much weight.

To be clear, this has nothing to do with Hamas or Israel, and nothing to do with the intensity of suffering and horror we saw last week”

He emphasizes the need to use language that is clear and accurate, and that avoids stereotypes and assumptions. He also acknowledges that there are times when the use of the word “terrorist” is appropriate, such as when theterm is attributed (in a TV or radio clip, or in a direct quote on the web).”

You can read the full email response below for more clarity: 

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7 months ago

Spare me this, they are terrorist sympathizes, simple!