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The pilot is innocent, viewers said

An interactive movie, where viewer could choose a verdict, may express increasing radicalisation, expert claims.

Illustrative stock photo(Source: SME)

The international project of the German television ARD titled “The Verdict” has put the viewers of public-service broadcaster RTVS in front of a difficult decision: whether a young pilot is innocent or guilty. Most Slovak viewers picked the former option, the Sme daily reported.

Such a decision indicates that the attitudes of people are becoming more radical, according to psychologist and court expert Anton Heretik.

The film, screened on October 17 evening, tells the story of a young pilot who decides to sacrifice the lives of a group of people on board of the plane to prevent a terrorist attack, despite being ordered not to shoot. Slovaks, as well as viewers in Austria, Switzerland, the Czech Republic and Germany, were to decide whether he is a hero or a villain.

While altogether 102,000 people in Slovakia watched the film, only 10,217 of them voted on the verdict. Up to 87 percent of them decided he is innocent, according to Sme.

Though the results of voting from other countries have not been officially revealed, Marcela Mojtová of co-production studio Beta opines the numbers will be very similar.

The project attracted also viewers in the age of 12-54 years, who represented about one half of the total number of voters.

The film was followed by a discussion with Heretik, security analyst Milan Žitný, and judge Ján Hrubala.

Heretik was surprised by two things: the unambiguity of voting and the high agreement with other countries which are otherwise different.

“There are Islamophobes here, though we have no refugees,” Heretik told Sme, adding that Austria and Germany, where the situation is different, had the same result in voting. “This is an indirect proof how the opinions of people become more radicalised – they turn into supporters of tough, direct measures.”

However, he admitted he did not know how he would have acted if he had been the pilot.

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