Watchdog whips webs for sex, violence

Dispatch - Hungary

BUDAPEST – Days after being appointed president of broadcast regulator the ORTT, Gyorgy Kovacs punished commercial networks RTL Klub, SBS-controlled TV2 and regional net Budapest TV for violating media law.

The regulator slapped market leader RTL Klub for a newsmagazine that included violent scenes. TV2 was hit for an afternoon report on prison sex, and Budapest TV was sanctioned for ushering in the New Year with the broadcast of a live sex act.

The penalties, issued March 31 but not announced publicly until mid-April, include a two-hour suspension of broadcasting for RTL Klub, a half-hour suspension for TV2, and an hour suspension for Budapest TV. RTL Klub programming director Peter Kolosi said the net would challenge the regulator in court.

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