French TV Says 'Non' To Facebook Mentions On Air

French broadcasting officials don't want Facebook or Twitter mentioned on television. Pourquoi?

French broadcasting officials are saying “non” to any mentions of Facebook or Twitter on television. Pourquoi?

Some say it’s the French being French, that is, expressing resentment toward the Anglo-Saxon culture of their neighbors across the pond.

But the decision to halt all mentions of phrases such as, “like us on Facebook,” appears to stem from a rather obscure 1992 French law banning clandestine advertising on television. Seems that the French believe that encouraging the liking or following of brands on certain social networks would squash all of those other social networks competing for attention.

Christine Kelly, a former French television anchor and spokesperson for the French broadcasting authority tried to explain the decision by saying it “would be a distortion of competition” to “give preference to Facebook, which is worth billions of dollars, when there are many other social networks that are struggling for recognition.”

Imagine if the U.S. government asked CNN to remove all mentions of Twitter or Facebook from their newscasts. Or if the news channel stopped sharing Facebook comments from viewers, or news footage collected from Facebook, on air. Social networking channels have become so integrated into network news programming that it’s fair to wonder whether the quality of news would suffer without them.

Certainly, as we’ve seen during recent natural disasters, government, social services and news programs alike relied on Facebook to share updates — social media has become a necessitu for news anchors and personalities who want to build their profile and publicize upcoming interviews and programming.

What do you think of the France’s ruling to ban Facebook by name on TV?