Italian state TV news outlet Rai wrongly aired 2010 footage as if it were from the cruise ship Costa Concordia, Christian Science Monitor reported. The ship “crashed into rocks off Italy’s west coast” Jan. 13, the BBC reported.
RAI is Italy’s “most watched television channel,” according to Mondo Times. The European Journalism Centre’s 2010 profile of Italy’s media landscape noted that RAI is “affiliated with the Italian government’s main political party, the Christian Democrats.”
The footage in question — of “the interior of a luxury cruise ship shaking while passengers panicked” — was aired Jan. 15 as coverage of the Concordia, but turned out to be from September 2010. That cruise ship was Australian, according to Christian Science Monitor. Here is the 2010 video. (See a screenshot above this story.)
The video’s origins were revealed by bloggers, Christian Science Monitor explained, adding that as a result of the video, bloggers are calling for Italy’s National Order of Journalists to “take steps against RAI.” Christian Science Monitor added that the incident has bolstered calls for easier entry into Italy’s journalism field.
As Christian Science Monitor explained, currently “journalists must pass a government-supervised exam and register in the Order to enter the profession.” The European Journalism Centre’s profile on Italy adds that journalists can’t join the Order unless they have “employment as a fulltime employee in a newspaper, radio or TV outlet, and after an admission examination.”
However, the Order‘s Iacopini defended the group’s existence in light of the fake video and compared criticism of the current system to driving: “It’s like saying that because there are people who can drive without a driving license, and vice versa, we should abolish driving licenses.”
Editors Weblog also published an article on “how to be a journalist in Italy” here.
We have written to RAI and the Order for comment and will update with any response.