NBDSA Issues Guidelines for Sensitive Reporting on LGBTQIA+ Issues


The News Broadcasting and Digital Standards Authority (NBDSA) urged broadcasters to avoid promoting homophobia and stereotypes or disclosing one’s gender identity or sexual orientation without consent.

In new guidelines addressing coverage of the LGBTQIA+ community, the regulatory body for television and digital media emphasized the importance of reporting “accurately, objectively, and sensitively” on LGBTQIA+ issues.

The ‘Specific Guidelines for Reportage on Issues Concerning the LGBTQIA+’ emphasized the serious social repercussions of non-sensitive and inaccurate reporting about the community. It cautioned against sensationalizing or instigating panic, distress, or undue fear among viewers.

Broadcasters were asked to refrain from using expressions or slurs that could be interpreted as hate speech against the LGBTQIA+ community. The guidelines emphasized that reporting should not promote homophobia, transphobia, or negative stereotypes.

Citing the ‘Code of Ethics and Broadcasting Standards,’ which prohibits the intrusion into private lives unless there is a clearly established and identifiable public interest, the guidelines stressed respecting the privacy of LGBTQIA+ individuals. Personal information, including gender identity or sexual orientation, should not be disclosed without consent, aligning with the Supreme Court’s recognition of privacy as a fundamental right.

Recognizing the significant influence of news media on public opinion, broadcasters were advised to use inclusive and gender-neutral language, respecting individuals’ preferred pronouns and names when reporting on LGBTQIA+ individuals.

Additionally, the guidelines encouraged broadcasters to strive for diverse representation and provide platforms for voices from various segments of the LGBTQIA+ community to express their views while reporting on relevant issues.

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