Media: Questions during direct line with Putin were screened by Kremlin

All the questions that were broadcast on the screen during a live broadcast of a direct line with President Vladimir Putin, including questions about the possible resignation of the head of state and about the policy of Aleksey Navalny, were agreed upon in advance by the organizers of the program and the Kremlin's press service. This was reported by the BBC Russian Service, citing several employees who participated in the preparation of the program.

“First, they select one, then select others, and so on, [up to] the presidential press service,” the BBC source explained.

According to another source of the TV channel, remote studios that air broadcasts only manage the technical “assembly” of the program. So employees who displayed the questions were not involved in their selection.

Also, the channel was told that during the broadcast, alongside the director would be management from the main federal channels. This included the producer of Channel One, Konstantin Ernst; the head of the VGTRK (All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company) Oleg Dobrodeyev; the CEO of NTV Alexey Zemsky, and others.

In case of an error, the source explained, the reaction would be instantaneous, and if the broadcast was not not turned off, then “there was an order to move on.”

The press secretary of the Russian president Dmitry Peskov, commenting on the BBC’s information about the coordination of all of the questions for the head of the country, said that the questions on the direct line “were not screened.”

“What happened was shown on the screen,” said Peskov. “Everything was straightforward and direct.”

The Q&A direct line with Putin took place on June 15th. It lasted four hours. For the first time, the organizers of the program used an unusual technique: on the screen, in the form of pop-up messages, viewers’ questions appeared to the president during the actual broadcast.

  Putin, Direct Line