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SABC stands firm on decision over staff & social media

The broadcaster has defended its decision to bar employees from making political commentary on social media.

FILE: The SABC offices in Auckland Park, Johannesburg.  Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) says the social media conduct of its employees should be in line with its regulations as it views social media platforms as a public space, even if content is published in a personal capacity.

The broadcaster has defended its decision to bar employees from making political commentary on social media or posting pictures of themselves wearing party regalia.

The SABC has faced criticism for its decision to no longer broadcast footage of public property being torched or damaged during violent protests.

But the public broadcaster says its decisions don't amount to self-censorship.

SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago says the broadcaster won't tolerate any social media activity from employees that brings it into disrepute.

"As much as it is your own Twitter, as long as it brings the organisation into disrepute, we'll deal with it."

He says even if people are posting commentary in their personal capacity, they are still linked to the SABC and represent its brand.

The broadcaster says it especially has to maintain a credible image in the lead-up to the 3 August local government elections.