Society, Politics, and Economy in Modern Turkey: Sociology of Turkey - Maintained by Tugrul Keskin
We are at a point in our work when we can no longer ignore empires and the imperial context in our studies. (p. 5)
― Edward W. Said, Culture and Imperialism

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Penguins Not Protests on Turkish TV Fuel Anger

By Benjamin Harvey, Selcan Hacaoglu & Taylan Bilgic
Bloomberg News - Jun 6, 2013

As clouds of tear gas engulfed central Istanbul and anti-government demonstrators fought with police, billionaire Aydin Dogan’s news channel aired a documentary about penguins.

The scheduling made him and other media bosses targets of demonstrators who have turned the occupation of an Istanbul park into a challenge to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan after a police crackdown began on May 31. They say the coverage, or lack of it, of the biggest nationwide protests in years reflects a media industry driven by the desire to stay on good terms with Erdogan and his Justice and Development Party, or AKP.

“The judiciary, the police and the media are all on the side of the AKP,” Seda Terkoglu, a 19-year-old high school student, said during a rally in Istanbul on June 2. “The mainstream media is only promoting the AKP.”

The protests, initially over the redevelopment of Taksim Square in Istanbul, spread to more than 60 cities. Demonstrators called for Erdogan, Turkey’s most popular politician in decades and a three-time election winner, to step down. They included the erosion of press freedom among their grievances, as well as what they called the government’s authoritarian approach and Islamis.

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