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Vietnam national broadcaster fined for airing unauthorized show, secures Vietnam Idol permit

Tuesday, April 07, 2015, 17:07 GMT+7
Vietnam national broadcaster fined for airing unauthorized show, secures Vietnam Idol permit
Vietnamese beauty Thuy Van (second right), who hosts the localized “Asia’s Got Talent” series, poses with a group of contestants who represent Vietnam at the ongoing Asian-scale talent show.

National broadcaster Vietnam Television (VTV) has been given a fine of over US$2,000 for airing two episodes of the localized version of “Asia’s Got Talent” last month without a license while it has been granted the permit to broadcast “Vietnam Idol 2015.”

The Ministry of Information and Communications on Monday issued a decision to impose a fine of VND50 million (US$2,330) on VTV.

“Asia's Got Talent” is the regional version of the “Got Talent” franchise, which features singers, dancers, magicians, comedians, and other performers of all ages.

Several Vietnamese contestants, who were winners, runners-up, and finalists of the franchise’s local version, “Vietnam’s Got Talent,” in its three seasons have also showed off their flair at the ongoing contest.

The Asian show’s finale is slated to take place on May 13 at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.

Two localized “Asia’s Got Talent” episodes were aired on March 22 and 23 on VTV6 while the ministry has yet to grant a broadcast license for the reality TV program.

The communications ministry yesterday also announced it had granted a permit to Vietnam Idol, the Vietnamese version of the world-famous Idols series.

The show, which debuted in Vietnam in 2007, has grown to be one of the country’s currently popular singing contests.

The first episode of the 2015 Vietnam Idol was on air at 8:00 pm on Sunday on VTV3.

2015 Vietnam Idol contestants pose at an audition held in Nha Trang City, the heart of the south-central province of Khanh Hoa, in a photo provided by the organizer. 

In mid-March, the Department of Radio, Television, and Electronic Information under the Ministry of Information and Communications notified VTV that it would not consider granting certificates of registry to several programs, including Vietnam Idol, which the television station has co-produced with its partners, who have made repeated slip-ups in recent times.

The department said it would not license some other programs co-produced by VTV and its partners either, including the localized version of “Asia’s Got Talent.”

This move resulted from a slew of blunders that have been seen on several VTV entertaining shows, such as gaffes regarding the verifying process of a reality show, use of culturally inappropriate language and images, and rule violations in running advertisements, the department explained.

According to the Ministry of Information and Communications’ statistics, VTV has made 51 blunders, including serious mistakes, and has been fined over VND100 million ($4,660) since 2013.

The national broadcaster repeated many blunders last year alone, including the broadcasting of the beheading of a live turtle during a reality show, a suggestive joke in a quiz show, and a “Vietnam’s Got Talent” semifinalist mistakenly drinking acid, among others.

On Thursday last week, the broadcaster sent a document to the communications ministry, admitting to such blunders, saying that it has penalized those involved and pledging to improve and keep in check its future performance.

Based on VTV’s efforts to rectify its wrongs, the communications ministry decided to grant licenses to four of the station’s suspended programs, including Vietnam Idol, the governmental body said yesterday.

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