|Hungary’s newly established media authority has opened an inquiry into a small private radio station, Tilos, for broadcasting the song ‘Warning, it’s on’ by US rapper Ice-T, Agence France-Presse reported on 1 January 2011.
Hungary’s new legislation came into force on 1 January 2011. Agence France-Presse reported that the law has sparked fierce opposition and concerns about media freedom in the country. A new all-powerful media authority headed by members of the ruling party is given the power to impose fines for material not deemed politically balanced.
Radio and television stations could be fined up to 730,000 euros (975,000 dollars) for going against “public interest, public morals and order”, or for broadcasting “partial information”, without the media authority having to clearly specify what constitutes an infringement of the law.
A letter from the new media authority, published on the radio station’s website, said Ice-T’s song was ‘gangster-rap’ and ‘could influence the development of minors in a negative way’ because it was broadcasted in the afternoon hours. Tilos should have broadcast it after 21:00, it said.
Hungarian websites said the letter recalled the Communist days of the 1960s and 1970s when censors warned against the destructive potential of punk music.
Agence France-Presse, AFP – 1 January 2011:
‘Hungarian radio station first to be cited under harsh new media law’