In Turkey there are 196 television channels; 19 of which are national, 12 regional, 165 local. State-owned Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT), owns 13 channels in total (RATEM 2018). In 2009 TRT started broadcasting in Kurdish with its channel named TRT Kurdi. Additionally, in 2010, TRT El Arabia which broadcasts in Arabic was established. TRT is mostly criticized for pro-government broadcasting.
TRT held the monopoly in broadcasting until commercial TVs were in the 1990s. Star 1, the first private TV station, was founded in 1990. A law for private broadcasting was added to the constitution in 1993.
After the sale of the media assets of the Doğan Group to the Demirören Group in March 2018, out of the top 10 TV channels that hold the most audience, seven belong to five big holdings such as Doğuş has 2 channels (Star TV, NTV), Ciner has 1 (Show TV), Demirören has 2 (Kanal D, CNN Türk) and Kalyon has 2 channels (ATV, A Haber). The remaining three is FOX TV, TRT 1 and Kanal 7.
Television continues to be the most popular media platform in Turkey. Based on data from Advertisers' Association', 2.9 percent growth was calculated in all media and advertisement investments compared to the previous year. Out of a total of 11.002 million TL, 2751 million of which belonged to the advertising investments, TV has the largest piece of the advertising pie, with 47 percent in 2018. 9,5 percent of these investments go to newspapers, 28,9 percent goes to digital platforms, 3.3 goes to radio. (Türkiye’de Tahmini Medya ve Reklam Yatırımları Reklamcılar Derneği Raporu, Mart 2019).
According to a study conducted by public research company KONDA (August 2016), 65 percent of the population found out about the July 15 coup attempt via TV channels.
The shutdown of Television Channels
A Turkish court seized Koza İpek Media Group televisions Kanaltürk and Bugün TV in October 2015 based on being connected to the Gülen Organization. Public Satellite and Cable TV operations company Türksat stopped the broadcasts of Bugün TV, Kanaltürk TV, Samanyolu TV, S News TV, Mehtap TV, and Irmak TV.
The decrees [668 (27.07.2016), 675 (29.10.2016), 677 (22.11.2016), 675 (29.10.2016) ve 670 (17.08.2016), 689 ( 29.04. 2017),693 (25.08.2017) ve 695 (24.12.2017) and 701(08.07.2018) ] declared during the state of emergency, brought the shutdowns of 6 news agencies, 41 radios, 38 TVs, 70 newspapers, 20 magazines, and 29 printing houses and distribution channels (in total 204 news agencies). This includes the decisions to shut down by RTÜK (19 TV channels and 17 radio stations).
The decisions to shut down 17 newspapers, 4 radios, 4 TV and a total of 25 media organizations under decrees were canceled. During the OHAL period in the total of 179 media agencies (53 newspaper, 34 TV, 37 Radio station, 20 magazines, and 6 news agencies and 29 publishing house) were shut down.
16 TV channels have been shut down through decree 668, 12 were shut down by RTÜK based on decree 668. On October 3, Med Nûçe TV (Kurdish), which broadcasted in Europe, banned on French satellite Eutelsat through Turkey's official request. In 2018, 1 TV ( Avantaj TV) was shut down based on decree 701 (July 8, 2018). In total it became 38 TV channels that were shut down with the decree laws after the coup attempt on July 15.
These shutdowns were based on "connection, coherence and communication with the Gülen Terror Organization (FETO/PYD) which has been established as a threat to national security; as well as terror organizations and structures and groups which have been declared as acting against the security of the state, by the National Security Council."
The shutdown of the decision of 34 radio stations are still active.
Which Channels Were Shut Down?
Art TV, Azadi TV, Barış TV, Bugün TV, Birlik Medya TV, Can Erzincan TV, Denge TV, Dünya TV, Hayat TV, Hayat'ın Sesi TV, Hira TV, Irmak TV, İMC TV, Jiyan TV, Kanal 12, Kanal 24, Kanal 35, Kanaltürk, MC TV, Mehtap TV, Merkür TV, Mezopotamya TV, Ört TV- Ödemiş, Özgür Gün TV,Samanyolu TV, Tele 9 Adana, Tuna Shopping TV, TV 10, Van TV, Van Genç TV, Yek Televizyon, Yumurcak TV.
The closure of SRT TV was canceled through a decree. The Kurdish children's channel Zarok TV restarted operating with the condition that it broadcast 40 percent in Turkish.
Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK)
Radio and Television Authority of Turkey (RTÜK) was formed in 1994 based on the "act of the establishment of Radio and TV Initiatives and Broadcast." Regulation of broadcast organizations, providing licenses and auditing of broadcasters are among the authority's responsibilities.
In 2018 the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) temporarily stopped broadcasts of 67 TV programs, issued 85 fines and 1 warning to TV networks. Including fines issued to radio programs, RTÜK issued 11,951,153 TRY of fines in total.
According to BİA Media Monitoring Report of the year 2016 and 2017; in 2016 RTÜK gave warnings to 50 TV channels, fines to 112 and broadcast bans to two. In 2017, RTUK gave warnings to 11 TV channels, fines to 82 and 13 broadcast ban.
The total of fines based on the violation of broadcast principles reached RTÜK issued 21,333,825 TRY of fines in 2016 and almost 15,907,627 TRY in 2017.
Radyo ve Televizyon Üst Kurulu
Türkiye Radyo Televizyon Kurumu (TRT)
BBC (2015), Turkish police raid Istanbul media group Koza-Ipek
BBC (2016), Turkey coup attempt: More than 130 media outlets shut
Diken (2016), KONDA araştırması: ‘Demokrasi nöbeti’ katılımcılarının yüzde 84’ü AKP’li
Türkiye’de Tahmini Medya ve Reklam Yatırımları Reklamcılar Derneği Raporu 2018, Mart 2019
TV consumption, October 2018
Konda Hayat Tarzı Araştırması 2018
RATEM – Türkiye Radyo ve Televizyon Yayıncılığı Sektör Raporu 2018
BİA Media Monitoring Report 2018: One Year of the Journalist and the Media