Published On: Thu, Jul 30th, 2020

‘Prefer to use my own judgement’: Poll shows minimal support for Labour Party’s call to ‘urgently review’ RT’s media license

A letter from Labour’s Shadow Culture Secretary Jo Stevens to communications regulator Ofcom demands that RT’s media license be reviewed, but a poll shows the party itself doesn’t want censorship, but to make their own decisions.

The poll, conducted by Labour Grassroots, finds only 26 percent of Labour supporters feel the party should pursue having the media outlet’s license reviewed by a third party. 

While another 19 percent did not answer either way, 55 percent of the 620 respondents said no. 

And though those 55 percent believe RT is biased, many commented that the bias makes them no different from other media outlets and there is still value in the coverage.

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“I watch for the interviews. They are very balanced and fair. The interviewers ask a question, allow a full answer and then ask follow up questions. Very good and far better than the equivalent on the BBC,” one respondent said. 

“I am sure that RT is careful not to cause too many ripples with the Russian government. But that also applies to the BBC and the British government,” added another. 

Yet another said as a “big boy,” he preferred to make the decision about where he gets his news, rather than the government.

“I know RT is effectively state run. However, as a big boy I prefer to use my own judgement rather than having a media outlet censored.”

Of those polled, 68 percent also believe RT provides useful media coverage. 

In Stevens’ letter to Ofcom, it was claimed that RT has dangerous “political influence.” The charge was based on a report by the Intelligence and Security Committee, which called out social media companies in the UK for “failing to play their part” in suppressing “disinformation” from RT. 

The report claimed RT helped influence UK politics in favor of Russia, like interfering with the Brexit vote, but failed to give any examples.

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