Ethical Journalism Network Newsletter – 25 February 2016



Poking Fun and Story-telling: How Satire Holds Media and Politicians to Account

Satirists in the United States are playing a key role in questioning the way media and many politicians talk about refugees and immigration. A recent sketch by Samantha Bee highlights the continuing lack of refugee voices in media, echoing one of the many findings of the EJN’s recent Moving Stories report on media coverage of migration in the US and 13 other countries.

Our latest Inside Ethics blog explores the blurred lines between journalism and satire, and find that while playing it straight is sometimes enough to attract and hold the attention of the audience, often the most important news can be equally delivered with quick-wit and a sharp tongue that not only informs the public, but also takes the pompous out of politics.

Read the full article here. (EJN)

Code of ethics for reporting on children launched

A Child Protection Code of Ethics intended to uphold and promote the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct among journalists in relation to their reportage on children, has been launched in Accra.

The 16-page document on the theme, “Making the Worth of Children Matter Through Reporting”, touches on issues of protecting the privacy and dignity of the child, participation and consent, responsibility of journalists towards society for the interest of children, and placement of images, videos, and messages in news reporting.

Developed by Child Rights International, a non-governmental organisation, the National Media Commission (NMC) and the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), with funding from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the document is also meant to ensure that the ethics adopted by journalists in reporting on children are updated to suit their best interest, instead of damaging their image.

Read the full article here. (Graphic Online)

The Struggle of Displaced Journalists in Ukraine

When Victoria Kryat, a young journalist from the town of Krasny Luch in the Luhansk region, came to Kyiv in August 2014, she had 300 grivnas (US$12) in her pocket. Her former workplace, a Ukrainian language TV channel called Luch, had been taken over by pro-Russia fighters.

“At first, various military groups were coming and asking us to broadcast them,” she recounts. “Then armed men stormed our office, consisting mainly of female staff, and told us we were hiding [members of the] Pravyi Sektor [a right-wing Ukrainian political party]. They probably had an order to get control of all the media.” Most of her colleagues had to leave the channel and move to other parts of Ukraine.

Read the full article here. (Open Society)

Spotlight on ‘treatment of media’ at Sanef, IEC meeting

The South African National Editors’ Forum (Sanef) has asked the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) to include fair treatment of media in the declarations and pledges that political parties sign during elections.

Sanef also asked that political parties start adhering to the electoral code of conduct even before the date is promulgated as campaign was already underway and journalists experiencing problems in some areas.

Read the full article here. (SABC News)

How one letter changed the story in Pope v. Trump

In keeping with the rich tradition of religious ambiguity, Pope Francis made a provocative and vague statement directed at Donald Trump that dominated headlines Thursday. News outlets, primarily broadcasters, ran with the most sensational interpretation, which played into the hands of Trump’s outrage strategy and was less charitable to Francis, and probably less faithful. A fairer reading could have prompted an entirely different conversation.

Read the full article here. (CJR)

The New York Times Might Ban Visitors Who Use Ad Blockers ‘This stuff is not made for free,’ says CEO

New York Times CEO Mark Thompson did not mince words Tuesday when talking about ad blocking, which has been causing more than a few headaches for publishers.

Read the full article here. (Adweek)

IFJ, FAJ and the Yemeni union adopt a safety action plan for Yemeni media

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the Federation of Arab Journalists (FAJ) and the Yemen Journalists’ Syndicate (YJS), an IFJ affiliate, adopted on 23 February a safety action plan for Yemeni media following a solidarity meeting in Amman, Jordan.

Read the full article here. (IFJ)

Opinion: Ad blocking + telecoms = a match made at the bank

The battle for free, high-quality Internet content just got even more heated. It’s being waged under the banner of “a better consumer experience,” on mobile devices, but I believe the debate is less about the consumer and much more about the money. Specifically, who’s going to make more of it.

Read the full article here. (Digiday)

How Effective is UK Print Regulator? External Review will look at Complaints, Rulings, Conflicts, & Funding

How effective is UK print regulator the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO)?

Read the full article here. (iMediaEthics)

Brazilian Newspaper Runs Fake Interview

Brazilian newspaper Edicao do Brasil admitted it published a fake interview with journalist and political scientist Leonardo Sakamoto. The fake interview claimed Sakamoto said “retirees are useless to society.” Sakamoto said he received 37 death threats over the false interview attributed to him.
Read the full article here. (iMediaEthics)