Almost all NPO broadcasters close the door for consultation with Ongehoord Nederland: ‘No journalism’ | show

All NPO broadcasters, except NOS, refuse to talk or collaborate with Ongehoord Nederland in the field of journalism. That broadcaster does not engage in journalism, the broadcasting associations argue in a letter to Gijs van Beusekom, the genre manager of the NPO who is responsible for journalistic productions.

Normally, all broadcasters discuss the journalistic course of the NPO together. The heads of journalism of the broadcasters now state that Ongehoord Nederland ‘in our view does not conduct journalism, but uses its programming to put forward points of view and opinions that are not journalistically substantiated’.

‘The NPO’s genre consultation is a place where the heads of journalism explore the profession together and keep each other on their toes, but this is only possible if all participants share the same basic journalistic principles, such as hearing both sides of the argument and finding the truth,’ according to the broadcasters.

The current programming of Ongehoord Nederland does not meet this in the eyes of the other broadcasters. The letter is signed by AvroTros, BNNVara, WNL, Human, Omroep Zwart, Omroep Max, KRO-NCRV, VPRO, EO and Powned. WNL editor-in-chief Bert Huisjes said yesterday that his broadcaster no longer wants to talk.

The NOS has not joined the call. “I can’t find a solution in advance not to come to the table,” says editor-in-chief Giselle van Cann of NOS Nieuws. ,,That genre consultation is precisely the place to say what you think of journalism. It is not for me to make an administrative judgment.”

The NPO takes the letter “extremely seriously”, a spokesperson said. He says that the NPO ‘has not yet taken a position’ on the issue. “We will discuss that.”


The genre meeting is a place where the heads of journalism explore the profession together and keep each other on their toes, but this is only possible if all participants share the same journalistic fundamentals

Broadcasters in letter


Ongehoord Nederland previously received a financial sanction from the NPO after an investigation by the Ombudsman into complaints that the broadcaster would spread incorrect and unreliable information, that the journalists would not ask enough critical questions and that the guests would mainly come from the right. This would be contrary to the journalistic code of the NPO. The Ombudsman considered these complaints to be largely well-founded.

The Ombudsman has launched a new investigation after a much-discussed item that showed videos of random black people beating up white people without any context. Presenter Raisa Blommestijn stated that the black perpetrators all had a racist motive. But from research by pointer has shown that there is no evidence for this.

As a result of this item, the Ombudsman again received many hundreds of complaints. The NPO has also asked the Media Authority to look into whether Ongehoord Nederland has violated the media law.

Ongehoord Nederland and broadcaster Arnold Karskens could not be reached for comment today. But in the program Unheard of News accused presenter Blommestijn of excluding the fellow broadcasters ‘the sound of millions of Dutch people’. She also accused the NPO of ‘standing for connection and inclusion, but now doing nothing but excluding and throwing mud’.

Also listen to the AD Media Podcast with this week’s nominations for the Televizier ring, the clash between Angela de Jong and Johan Derksen, the statement by Linda de Mol and the cancellation of Het Dorp. Listen below or subscribe via Spotify or iTunes.

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