When one says police, the first things that come to mind are shots from television news airing dangerous police operations or a breathtaking chase after a criminal. The adventurous life stories of police are depicted in TV series and films that are growing in number. Such series and movies address a broad audience, and now policemen who think their lives can also be depicted on TV say they want to become scriptwriters for films and TV series.
Those police officers who want to become scriptwriters frequently visit police department legal advisors to question whether writing a scenario for a detective series is acceptable in terms of professional ethics or if it poses a conflict of interest.
E.Y., a police officer for 16 years, says he wants to share the experience he has gained while working in different units within the police department in films or TV series. Stating that he writes scripts from time to time, E.Y. notes that his working as a scriptwriter would result in TV series becoming better because he will correct certain mistakes and misconceptions regarding policemen and their occupation.
Under current laws, there is no legal hitch at first glance because civil servants can write scripts provided that they do not leak privileged information. Civil servants can receive royalties by signing a royalty contract, as a royalty contract is not within the restrictions of civil service regulations. This code prohibits civil servants from engaging in commercial activities that provide financial gain. However, according to some legal experts’ interpretations, scriptwriting could fall into a work category forbidden by the law. Also, the Security General Directorate in Ankara is not fond of the idea of its police officers writing scripts for movies and television, for fear that they could inadvertently disclose information classified as confidential by the police department.
Policemen assist films and TV series on technical issues
However, film and TV series directors receive help from police officers who need to obtain special permission from the provincial governor’s offices in their area to provide consulting services for television productions. They are only allowed to provide technical information to producers under the current legislation. The police force also frequently allows television and movie crews to use their facilities as filming locations.