Saturday, 19 April 2014

Media experts comment on presidential candidates' ads

2 January 2013

Prague, Dec 29 (CTK) - Media experts addressed by CTK assessed rather critically the official spots of the nine Czech presidential candidates running in the first direct election that the public Czech Television (CT) started to broadcast on its news channel CT24 Friday.

Political scientist Zdenek Zboril said the spots were more cultivated than similar creations before the general elections usually are.

Professor Jan Jirak, from the Media Study Centre, told CTK the spots are empty and without any idea, and that it is evident that they are made out of duty and that they are not an important part of the campaign.

Daniel Koeppl, Marketing&Media editor-in-chief, said only the spots of former Social Democrat (CSSD, now Citizens' Rights Party, SPOZ) prime minister Milos Zeman and CSSD deputy chairman Jiri Dienstiber's spots attracted his attention.

Koeppl said he likes Zeman's spot in the style of "you will be fine with me."

Dienstbier's spot is rather pathetic, but at the same time the most civil of all.

Zboril said he was surprised that the party candidates, with the exception of Dienstbier, did not have in their spots any colleagues from the parties whose lawmakers nominated them.

"They did not allow them to appear. It shows that the presidential candidates are afraid of being presented by party representatives," Zboril said.

He also assessed positively Zeman's clip and the spot of MEP Zuzana Roithova (Christian Democrats, KDU-CSL) among female candidates.

Zboril said the use of athletes and artists like in the spot of the TOP 09's candidate, Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg, is rather unfortunate and not entirely trustworthy.

He said Schwarzenberg "saves" it a little bit with his charisma.

Zboril said artist Vladimir Franz (unaffiliated) probably did the best he could when he decided not to talk in the spot.

Zboril said the least impressive was the spot of former caretaker prime minister Jan Fischer (unaffiliated).

Koeppl did not like it either. He said this style may be impressive in the United States.

He was also critical of Roithova and Tana Fischerova's (unaffiliated) spots that he said reminded of the 1990s [after the fall of communism].

Zboril said it is strange that some candidates, like chairwoman of the extra-parliamentary Sovereignty party, Jana Bobosikova, only speaks about herself and does not address voters at all.

Koeppl said his overall impression of the spots is awkward. He said the spots are like the whole direct presidential election No one actually knows the sense of it.

The first round of the presidential election is scheduled for January 11-12 and a possible second round would be held two weeks later.

The candidates fielded by parties is besides Zeman, who however also collected citizens' signatures under his candidature, Dienstbier and Schwarzenberg also Premysl Sobotka (Civic Democrats, ODS).

Bobosikova was also collecting signatures under her petition.

Under the election law, a candidate needs support of at least ten senators or 20 Chamber of Deputies lawmakers, or 50,000 signatures by citizens, to be registered for the election.

CT will also broadcast the spots on its major channel, CT1, on January 2-9.

Public Czech Radio (CRo) will start broadcasting the candidates' one-minute spots on four of its stations on January 2.

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