The appalling events in Paris will inevitably spark a new debate about free expression and religious intolerance and we can expect more hate-speech – particularly from the right of European politics – aiming to make political capital out of understandable public anger and outrage. But journalists must know better than to give voice to fresh acts of hatred and particularly to encourage Islamaphobia.
This is a time for slow journalism when everyone in media and even those would-be journalists outside the newsroom need to think carefully about the consequences of what they write and the images they show.
Was The Times cowardly and lacking in journalistic solidarity when it decided not to publish the images from the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo that precipitated the execution of French journalists? (via The New York Times)
If Charlie Hebdo rebuilds and continues to publish, this year or in ten, its resilience and commitment to freedom of expression should be honored, whether or not you agree with its tactics and tone. (via Religion News Service)
2014 was the year journalists found out just how widely the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) was being used by public authorities to spy on reporters and identify their sources. This month, you can do two things about that: Sign Press Gazette’s petition to ‘Save Our Sources’ and contribute to a government consultation on RIPA. (via The Online Journalism Blog)
In the usually idyllic bathing spot of Grange Bay on Tobago’s north-west coast yesterday, Trinidad and Tobago’s former National Security Minister Martin Joseph drowned while going for a morning swim. Soon people were expressing shock over the manner in which they felt the local mainstream media sensationalised the story. (via Global Voices)
Turning the Page of Hate in Media Campaign for Tolerance in African Journalism
In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo shoot, this 5 point test of hate-speech by the Ethical Journalism Network should be considered by journalists during this challenging time and events must be put in context. Journalists should consider:
1. The status of the speaker. 2. The reach of the speech. 3. The objectives of the speech. 4 The content and form of the speech. 5.The political, social and economic climate.
1. In the immediate aftermath, news outlets will get it wrong. 2. Don’t trust anonymous sources. 3. Don’t trust stories that cite another news outlet as the source of the information. 4. There’s almost never a second shooter. 5. Pay attention to the language the media uses. 6. Look for news outlets close to the incident. 7. Compare multiple sources. 8. Big news brings out the fakers. And Photoshoppers. 9. Beware reflexive retweeting.