28th April 2016
By Stefanie Chernow

World Press Freedom Day Newsletter – 6 May 2016


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World Press Freedom Day: Countering Hate Speech in the Media through Ethics and Self-Regulation

To mark World Press Freedom Day 2016 the Ethical Journalism Network moderated a panel at UNESCO’s celebrations in Helsinki on “Countering Hate Speech in the Media through Ethics and Self-Regulation” with participants from Finland, Bosnia & Herzegovnia, Denmark, Indonesia, South Sudan and Peru.

Ahead of the panel discussion the EJN’s director Aidan White spoke about how media can identify and report hate-speech with the UNESCO youth Newsroom.

Read the highlights of the event here. (EJN)

World Press Freedom Day: Journalism must take a lead in countering hate-speech and propaganda


World Press Freedom Day: Journalism must take a lead in countering hate-speech and propaganda

Around the world the information crisis is defined by more government surveillance and interference, more corporate snooping and exploitation of personal information and a growing trend of abuse in online speech.

To mark World Press Freedom Day on May 3rd the Ethical Journalism Network is calling for quality journalism and ethical communications to be promoted in order to counter these dangerous trends.

Read the full press release here. (EJN)

World Press Freedom Day: UNESCO launches new accountable journalism project

Ahead of World Press Freedom Day on May 3, UNESCO launched its new Building Trust in media in South East Europe and Turkey project at an event in Helsinki on Monday with the Ethical Journalism Network and other partners. The project seeks to strengthen freedom of expression, access to information, free, independent and pluralistic media in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey.

The announcement comes just days after Europe’s leading media human rights campaigner, Dunja Mijatović, the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe representative for media freedom, told journalists’ leaders in Sarajevo that solidarity in defence of ethics and self-regulation were key to building public trust in media.

Read more here: Solidarity and Self-regulation Vital for Independent Journalism in Europe



Media Ethics and World Press Freedom Day Highlights

Tunisian journalists’ union warns of growing violations against press freedom (Middle East Monitor)

Press freedom: Between ethics and extortion (The Jakarta Post)

World Press Freedom Day Is A Terrifying Reminder Of What Reporters Could Face If Trump Is Elected (Huff Post)

On World Press Freedom Day, A View From Asia (IPS News Agency)




Corruption destroys journalism ethics: Zimbabwe editor

A veteran Zimbabwean journalist has lamented viability problems dogging media houses in the country and the poor remuneration and delayed salaries for journalists which he said were largely responsible for the unprecedented levels of corruption in the media that has led to a decline in ethical and professional standards.

In a speech at the annual Bornwell Chakaodza Memorial Lecture in Harare, Dumisani Muleya, Editor of the weekly Zimbabwe Independent newspaper, said corruption had not only destroyed journalism standards in the country but had become like a government policy.

Read the full article here. (IOL News South Africa)

New book examines gender’s role in press freedom

Sexualized violence, online harassment and gender-based discrimination all play a role in inhibiting press freedom according to a new book released by the Committee to Protect Journalists on Wednesday.

The book is part of the organization’s annual “Attacks on the Press,” series. The 2016 edition brings together essays by CPJ staff and outside experts highlighting the challenges and courage of journalists facing gender-based threats.

CPJ Advocacy Director Courtney Radsch said the idea of examining gender’s role in limiting press freedom Came up about five years ago when CBS correspondent Lara Logan was sexually assaulted while covering Arab Spring protests in Egypt.

Read the full article here. (AP)

Syria and climate change: did the media get it right?

In 2015 the media exploded with stories about the link between climate change and the violence in Syria. But did they get it right?

This digital report argues that while there are important links between climate change and the Syrian situation, the media has got it wrong. This report makes a powerful case for a more accurate and subtle relationship between climate, drought and the ongoing conflict and refugee situation.

Read the full article here. (Climate and Migration Coalition)

Wall Street Journal Falsely Labels Puerto Ricans As “Refugees” In Their Own Country

The Wall Street Journal issued a dire warning that the unfolding debt crisis in Puerto Rico could create an “exodus” of “Puerto Rican refugees” to the United States who would vote for Democrats and soak up public benefits — completely ignoring their status as American citizens, with every right to live and work in whatever part of the country they wish.Read the full article here. (Media Matters)

Press Council calls for vigil against paid news

Press Council of India (PCI) members A. Amarnath and C.K. Naik have cautioned the media against the scourge of paid news.

On a visit to the State to monitor the performance of the media during the run-up to the May 16 Assembly elections, the PCI members asked the media to maintain strict vigil against paid news in any form.

Read the full article here. (The Hindu)

Rajya Sabha colleagues swayed by false media frenzy, says Vijay Mallya in letter


Refugees make real news with a fake camera in Idomeni

As the Idomeni refugee camp in Greece fades from the 24-hour news cycle, three refugees are filling the (absent) reporters’ shoes. What began as a parody with a fake camera has become a real online news outlet.

Read the full article here. (DW)

Time to change how news media cover mass shootings, says Iowa State prof

The amount of media attention focused on the shooter in a mass killing sends the wrong message, says an Iowa State University associate professor of psychology. Douglas Gentile, an expert on media effects, says news reports about the killer, the type and number of weapons used and rounds of ammunition glamorize the situation and set a “high score” for future mass shooters to beat.

Read the full article here. (Iowa State University)


International & Online Journalism – A collection of academic essays on modern journalism

Freelance journalist and humanitarian worker, Julien Sueres, has published a series of articles on to mark World Press Freedom Day:

The future of newspapers in the digital age

The impact of digital technologies on the gathering, production and dissemination of news

The evolution of blogging

Development journalism

International & Online Journalism

Humanitarian journalism