Our weekly round-up of public service media related stories and headlines from around the world.

This week’s PSM Weekly comes at a time of crisis. In a week when coronavirus has been declared a global pandemic, the need for community solidarity and mutual support has never been greater. But this support requires quality, fact-checked and evidence based news and information.

With this in mind, the Public Media Alliance has compiled an extensive and growing resource featuring recommended tools, advice and sources for journalists and the public alike. The resource can be found via the link below or in the ‘Tools’ section of our website.

Do you have any recommendations? Let us know by emailing editor@publicmediaalliance.org

Coronavirus: Resources & best practices

Essential resources for sourcing and reporting news about the coronavirus pandemic

What we're listening to...

COVID-19 clampdown squeezes the media 

RNZ: Tough new measures announced yesterday to counter COVID-19 pleased pundits who had pleaded for action in recent days. But the effects could also change the game for media in the long run. Meanwhile, news-we-can-use in our media gets ever-more important – as opposed to off- the-cuff opinion. 

What we're watching...

Covid-19: Dr Ronan Glynn answers your coronavirus questions for news2day

RTÉ News: Coronavirus has dominated the headlines recently, and we know many people are concerned about it. The viewers of RTÉ’s children’s news programme, news2day, sent in their questions about the coronavirus. Dr Ronan Glynn, Deputy Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health, was in studio with Aisling Moloney to provide the answers.

Sign up to our Global Call Out

Promote, support and advocate for public service media

Global Headlines

Click on the tab menu below to reveal the latest regional stories.

ALGERIA: Prominent Journalist Facing Charges

HRW: Khaled Drareni, a prominent journalist, was arrested on March 7, 2020 while covering the pro-democracy demonstrations in Algiers, Human Rights Watch said today. He was jailed for four days and then provisionally released, pending his trial.

EGYPT: Egypt denies reports of rise in coronavirus infection rate 

Middle East Monitor: An official at the Egyptian heath ministry yesterday denied recent reports by the Guardian and the New York Times that thousands of people have been infected by the novel coronavirus in the country.

GHANA: Radio Tongu broadcaster suspended, director arrested in Ghana

CPJ:  On January 15, a group of about 20 police officers arrested Zottor, director of the privately owned broadcaster Radio Tongu who also works as a reporter for the station, at his residence in South Tongu, in southwestern Ghana’s Volta region.

KENYA: Kenya Media Predictions Report Launched (Report)

The Aga Khan University: The environment in which Kenyan media is operating in has changed tremendously over the years particularly in the age of digital disruption that has caused us to rethink journalism and the media business. Audiences have changed their news consumption habits and disrupting the traditional advertising business model.

KENYA: Make Media Council regulatory commission, editors say

Daily Nation: Stakeholders in the media industry have asked the government to elevate the Media Council of Kenya (MCK) to a statutory commission. They also appealed to the State to allow MCK to be the sole regulator of media content as well as the conduct of professionals in the industry.

MALAWI: IPI condemns police attacks on Malawi journalists

IPI: The International Press Institute (IPI), a global network of editors, media executives and journalists for press freedom, today condemned Tuesday’s attack on journalists by police in the Malawian capital Lilongwe.

NAMIBIA: NBC board questions Auditor General’s handling of 2016/17 report (Watch)

NBC News: The Namibia Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) board today questioned how the Auditor General dealt with the corporation’s 2016/17 financial report.

SOUTH AFRICA: South Africa’s SABC To Remove Separate Sports Bulletins From Radio Stations

Via Broadcast Media Africa: The SABC has announced that it plans to remove all standalone sports bulletins from its radio stations in order to cut costs, according to a recent report by the City Press.

ZIMBABWE: Women Still Face Barriers In Accessing Media – Survey

New Zimbabwe: Women in Zimbabwe are still struggling to access various media platforms compared to men who can easily reach electronic or print media, a recent report shows.

REGIONAL: RSF backs joint op-ed by 120 West African media and journalists calling for Beninese journalist’s release

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and more than 120 media outlets and journalists in West Africa are publishing an unprecedented joint op-ed today calling for the release of Ignace Sossou, a Beninese journalist still being held after two and a half months in prison although the proof of his innocence has been available for several weeks.

GENERAL: How can something so right be so wrong? Right to Information legislation is failing women in Africa

IFEX: In her contribution to IFEX’s series marking International Women’s Day, Regional Editor Reyhana Masters looks at how women are disadvantaged when it comes to accessing public information.

CHINA: Controlling the coronavirus narrative: China’s propaganda push (Watch)

Al Jazeera: As COVID-19 goes global, China’s plan to turn the tide of negative press. Plus, apartheid South Africa’s B-scheme movie.

CHINA & US: Press freedom pays a price in US-China media showdown

Deutsche Welle: Washington and Beijing’s tit-for-tat crackdown on foreign media could make work harder for US journalists in China. Experts say the principle of press freedom is being caught up in a geopolitical dispute.

HONG KONG: Police continue to abuse and obstruct journalists

IFJ: Over the last nine months, journalists in Hong Kong have faced obstruction, interference, violence, verbal abuse and humiliation by the police while reporting. Despite numerous calls by the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate, the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA), the situation has not improved.

INDIA: DD viewership grew 16% in 2019 due to network’s English news channel

ABU: Indian public broadcaster Doordarshan (DD) Network, which has been battling an onslaught of private channels over the past few decades, saw a 16 per cent rise in viewership in 2019.

INDIA: Journalism in Kashmir: State of repression (Report)

IPI: Reporters and media outlets face severe restrictions and harassment

JAPAN: ‘Can you truly call this a news conference?’ Abe, media under fire

Asahi Shimbun: Journalists blasted Prime Minister Shinzo Abe over his March 14 news conference, but reporters themselves were also criticized for not pressing the prime minister to adequately explain Japan’s anti-coronavirus measures.

JAPAN: New Coronavirus: What Happens If a Disaster Occurs Now? (Japanese)

NHK: A new type of coronavirus that continues to spread. The government points out that “under certain circumstances, there is a risk of spreading the infection, such as talking to many people in a closed space at a short distance.” However, in times of disaster, it may be necessary to spend time in such an environment to ensure safety. What should I do if we need to be evacuated due to an earthquake or heavy rain?

JAPAN: Postponement of utility bills, requests considered; the government might decide within a week (Japanese)

Asahi Shimbun: (…) The grace period for paying utility bills should be voluntarily determined by businesses and cannot be enforced. What the government refers to is the response to the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011 and the heavy rains in West Japan in 2018. Requested businesses to delay payments for victims of affected local governments and companies affected by the Disaster Relief Act. Payment deadlines for electricity, gas, telephone charges and NHK licence fees have been postponed according to the damage.

MALAYSIA: Malaysiakini journalist target of online hate campaign

IFJ: Malaysiakini journalist Kow Gah Chie has been targeted in an online hate campaign after publishing a story on the country’s new environment minister and his defence for logging in Kelantan. 

MALAYSIA: New minister vows to uphold media freedom (Opinion)

New Strait Times: The new Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah has vowed to uphold media freedom and not to compromise on fake news.

MYANMAR: Myanmar Military Suing Lawmaker, Reuters Under Telecommunications Law

Voice of America: Lawmakers around Southeast Asia are coming to the defense of one of their counterparts in Myanmar, who faces legal action after he told the Reuters news agency that military shelling had left two Rohingya Muslim women dead.

PAKISTAN: Attack on press freedom continues in Pakistan (Opinion)

Asia Times: While the rest of the world is busy dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government is busy muzzling the media and criticizing its political opponents.

PAKISTAN: Govt plans to fully digitise state-owned radio

The News Pakistan

PAKISTAN: Pakistan broadcast regulator cuts distribution of Geo News after CEO’s arrest

CPJ: The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority, the country’s broadcast regulator, contacted cable distributors throughout the country today and ordered them to stop transmitting Geo TV, the Urdu TV news channel owned by Jang Media Group, or else switch its broadcasts to a higher channel that is harder for viewers to find.

PAKISTAN: Why a media mogul was arrested in Pakistan

BBC News: The authorities in Pakistan have arrested one of the country’s leading media magnates on charges he illegally obtained government land more than 30 years ago.

PHILIPPINES: NTC will allow ABS-CBN to operate beyond May 4 unless courts intervene

Rappler: National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) will allow ABS-CBN to operate beyond its franchise expiry on May 4 until the end of the 18th Congress, unless there is “restraint” from the courts.

TAIWAN: New Taiwan Law Restricting Suicide Coverage in Media Stirs Debate

Voice of America: A new Taiwan law bars news media from disclosing various types of information about suicides, including methods used, in an effort to stem copycat behavior.  

UZBEKISTAN: Uzbekistan’s citizen journalists test limits of press freedom

Eurasianet: The idea that a blogger might dare to confront an Uzbek policeman would have been near inconceivable a few years ago.


ABC Media Centre: At this challenging time the priority for the ABC is to ensure we continue to provide the trusted service all Australians expect and can always turn to.

AUSTRALIA: JNI announces 2020 Asia Reporting Fellows (Opportunity)

Judith Nielsen Institute: The Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas is pleased to announce 12 Asia Reporting Fellows for 2020.

AUSTRALIA: New ABC Western Sydney newsroom opens for business

ABC Media Centre: From Monday 16 March the ABC’s new Western Sydney newsroom will officially be open for business, doubling the number of permanent News staff on location from three in the old office to six and adding the capacity to broadcast live radio programs in future.

FIJI: Fijians invited to be part of FBC’s Holi celebration

FBC News: Fijians are invited to come in numbers and enjoy the Fijian Broadcasting Corporation’s Holi celebrations in Suva and Labasa.

NEW ZEALAND: Global technology leader warns against ‘digital takeover’ of democracy

Asia Pacific Report: Global technology and business leader Dr Anita Sands has warned against allowing digital technology to take over democracy on the eve of the first anniversary of the Christchurch mosque massacre last year.

NEW ZEALAND: Marking an awkward anniversary

RNZ: Major media organisations rolled out lots of commemorative coverage to mark one year since the atrocity in Christchurch. It honoured those who died – and those who survived but have suffered – and gave New Zealanders a chance to hear more from Kiwi Muslims. But some of them didn’t welcome the commemoration. Mediawatch asks filmmakers and reporters from Christchurch how to get the balance right.

NEW ZEALAND: Media commentator Andrew Holden (Listen) 

RNZ: The implications of Covid-19 for the media industry, not least what are sports reporters going to do?

NEW ZEALAND: Midweek Mediawatch: How not to cover Covid-19 (Listen)

RNZ: In this week’s Midweek Mediawatch, Hayden Donnell talks to Karyn Hay about the perils of both-sides journalism during the Covid-19 crisis, a weird on-air monologue from Kerre McIvor, and some slightly cringeworthy market research from Radio NZ.

NEW ZEALAND: NZ On Air appoints new Chief Executive

NZ On Air: NZ On Air has appointed Cameron Harland to lead the public media agency. He will take up the Chief Executive reins from Tuesday 17 March.

REGIONAL: Pacific nations take further measures against coronavirus

RNZ: Pacific countries are continuing to take active measures to counter the entry and spread of Covid-19 coronavirus, amid the global pandemic.

ALBANIA: Prime Minister attacks the media in a public health announcement

Mapping Media Freedom: On 12 March 2020, the Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama has sent a voice message to all Vodafone clients in Albania ‘advising’ them how to protect themselves against coronavirus. Rama’s message also included a direct attack against the media and journalists, warning the public to “Protect yourself from the media”.

ESTONIA: Estonian public broadcaster to launch additional noontime news program

The Baltic Times: The ETV national television channel of Estonian public broadcaster ERR is to broadcast an additional noontime “Aktuaalne kaamera” news program on Sunday and due to the emergency situation, ETV will be showing an additional 12 p.m. news program from Monday to Friday starting from the new week.

FRANCE: Radio France activates its business continuity plan (French)

Radio France: Following the reinforced measures taken by the Government to stop the Covid-19 epidemic on Saturday March 14, Radio France is activating its business continuity plan.

FRANCE: Franceinfo is mobilising to support (French)

Radio France: Faced with the unprecedented health crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, Franceinfo is mobilizing and developing its grid to prioritize information, support the French and give them a voice. The information mission and the public service duty are crucial in this troubled period. franceinfo must, more than ever, be useful and with everyone.

FRANCE: Strike suspended at Radio France (French)

Telerama: Following the current health situation, the management of Radio France agreed, at the request of the unions, to suspend the ongoing negotiations on the planned job cuts. The recently launched strike, called by the CGT, is therefore also suspended.

FRANCE: Televisions and radios adapt to coronavirus shock (French) 

France 24: Television and radio channels are taking unprecedented measures to ensure the continuity of the news, without risking contributing to the spread of the coronavirus. There will be no more studio guests, public and even shared programs, journalists and columnists are now confined to their homes. 

GEORGIA: Adjara TV Dismisses Main News Program Anchor

Civil.ge: On March 13, Giorgi Kokhreidze, director of Adjara TV and Radio Company, Batumi based public broadcaster, dismissed Teona Bakuridze, anchor of the broadcaster’s main news program and a vocal critic of the channel’s new management.

GERMANY: Help for the producers: ZDF bears half of the additional costs (GERMAN)

DWDL: As the largest single client of the German TV industry, ZDF decided on Tuesday to take immediate measures for the producer landscape in view of the Corona crisis, as program director Dr. Norbert Himmler reveals in an interview with DWDL.de.

GERMANY: How German media react to the corona pandemic (German)

Deutschlandfunk: Reports from the home office, broadcasting without an audience – the corona pandemic is also reaching German media companies. Some report the first cases, others are still trying to prevent infections in-house. The focus is always on ensuring reporting.

GERMANY: Prime Ministers approve bill to increase broadcasting fees (German)

Horizont: The monthly broadcasting fee in Germany is expected to increase from 17.50 euros to 18.36 euros. The Prime Ministers passed a corresponding decision on Thursday, as announced by the State Chancellery of Rhineland-Palatinate.

GERMANY: Threats to journalists: The ’new normal’ in Germany (Report)

ECPMF: The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom publishes results of its five-year study of attacks on media workers in Germany. 

GREECE: “You no longer know how to report safely” (German)

Deutschlandfunk: Franzika Grillmeier has been living on the island of Lesbos since 2018 and reports there, among other things, for the “taz” about the local situation. “Reporting has become extremely difficult,” said Grillmeier in the Dlf – journalists would be attacked, insulted and spat on.

ITALY: How Covid-19 is affecting Italian journalism

Journalism.co.uk: With cancelled events and a ban on travel, reporters in Italy struggle to do their jobs. Meanwhile, news focuses nearly exclusively on the disease, often leaving audiences in the dark about current affairs

ITALY: Italian journalists battle to keep going as thirst for news grows

The Guardian: Newsagents among ‘basic necessities’ that can stay open amid coronavirus crisis. 

MONTENEGRO: Public broadcaster threatens journalists for speaking out

IFJ: Management of the Public Radio and Television of Montenegro (RTCG) have launched disciplinary proceedings against its editor Zoran Lekovic and journalist Nevenka Cirovic for exposing alleged irregularities at the broadcaster on social media. 

PORTUGAL: Portugal suspends DTT migration as pay-TV market grows

Broadband TV News: The Portuguese regulator ANACOM has announced the suspension of the migration process of the country’s DTT network due to constraints associated with the coronavirus (COVID-19).

RUSSIA: ‘A Whole New Ecosystem’: Independent Journalism Learns To Survive In Putin’s Russia

RFE/RL: The decades of President Vladimir Putin’s rule in Russia have been unkind to the country’s independent media. Since Putin was first elected in 2000, the Kremlin has stifled independent national broadcasting, closed down or taken over other commercial media projects, exerted pressure on media owners and advertisers, pushed out foreign investors, and repeatedly blocked access to various nonstate Internet resources.

RUSSIA: Chechen blogger and government critic Tumso Abdurakhmanov: ‘I am constantly at risk’ (Blog)

CPJ: Tumso Abdurakhmanov, a prominent blogger critical of the Chechen authorities, survived a violent assault in his home in Swedish town of Gävle on February 26, 2020. Two Russian nationals have been arrested in connection with the attack, according to a report by Agence France-Presse. CPJ documented the incident and spoke to the blogger after his release from police custody.

RUSSIA: Russia Fines BBC World News $480 for Violations

Reuters: A Russian court fined BBC World News and one of its senior journalists a total of 36,000 roubles ($480) on Thursday on charges of breaking broadcasting rules, Interfax news agency reported.

SPAIN: RTVE, continuous information service (Spanish) 

RTVE: RTVE will make some adjustments to its programming starting on March 16 to give priority to public service information. In addition to the usual news, three specials will be broadcast daily with updated information on the corona virus pandemic. 

SPAIN: RTVE launches “EduClan” to liven up quarantine for children in the house (Spanish) 

Diez Minutos: There are no schools, but the smallest of the house will be able to continue learning with EduClan . This RTVE initiative active from March 16 will offer Spanish families educational resources in addition to entertainment during the quarantine to stop the expansion of the coronavirus.

SPAIN: RTVE. Rosa María Mateo does not leave her position “out of responsibility” (Spanish) 

Hispanidad: Mateo has been the sole administrator since July 2018 and has made up to 77 changes in the workforce in areas such as news and general corporate management. Mateo has indicated that she will continue to lead the public radio television “by responsibility” until the public contest to elect the future Board of Directors and its president is resolved. 

SWEDEN: Text and transcription no easy question for Sweden’s Radio (Swedish – blog)

Sveriges Radio: Due to questions recently addressed to the Swedish Radio about audibility and possible transcription, Elle-Kari Höjeberg, accessibility manager, describes how Sveriges Radio looks at this issue and how we work with it.

SWEDEN: We make continuous decisions to secure our operations (Swedish – blog)

Swedish Radio: Björn Löfdahl, Program Director at Swedish Radio writes about how the company works with questions about the corona virus and how it affects Sweden’s Radio

SWITZERLAND: Following the closure of schools, the SSR adapts its programs from March 16 (French)

SRG SSR: Regarding the closure of schools throughout Switzerland, the SSR is gradually adapting its offer of radio, TV and digital programs from tomorrow March 16 until further notice in each of the regions. Programs for children and young people will be strengthened.

SWITZERLAND: RTS reviews its cultural offer and approaches young generations (French)

Radio Télévision Suisse: RTS will launch numerous projects this spring in the fields of culture, news and the environment, on all of its delivery channels. RTS Culture, in particular, will redeploy its offer and accentuate the classical musical vocation of Espace 2.

UK: BBC to delay over-75 TV licence fee changes

BBC News: The BBC is to delay TV licence fee changes for the over-75s until August in light of the coronavirus situation.

UK: Lord Hall: Why the BBC matters 

Politics Home: No other institution is woven so deeply into the fabric of British national life as the BBC. We undermine that at our peril, writes director general Tony Hall

UK: One year on, Lyra McKee’s legacy: ‘She would be there for you. 100%’

The Guardian: In April 2019 journalist Lyra McKee was shot dead while observing a riot in Derry. Here her partner, family and friends talk about her life, and assess her place in Northern Irish history. 

UK: UK radio stations start restricting guests and visitors 

Radio Today: The BBC has implemented a new policy for all visitors to the BBC requiring visitors, guests and contributors to declare themselves fit before entering its buildings.

REGIONAL: Coronavirus: demonstrations and panic scenes, poisons from Europe (French – Watch)

France 24: To spread poison on social networks, Internet users do not hesitate to divert all kinds of videos: scenes of alleged panic in Germany, anti-Chinese demonstration in Italy or racist acts in the metro in Belgium, examples from several European countries are numerous.

REGIONAL: EU online terrorist content legislation risks undermining press freedom

CPJ: An internal EU document leaked by Politico on March 6 appeared to show that proposed amendments to a draft EU regulation dealing with terrorist content online fail to fully reflect input from media and civil society groups. The regulation is pending final negotiation with other EU institutions.

REGIONAL: The coronavirus, vehicle of anti-migrant propaganda (French – Listen)

RFi: Since Turkey threatens to allow migrants who have taken refuge in Europe to pass through Europe, the fear of a migration crisis similar to that of 2015 in Europe has aroused. On social networks, everything is good to justify the rejection of newcomers. With the help of Firefox, the ultra-nationalists are agitating fears, including those linked to the Covid-19.

ARGENTINA: CORONAVIRUS: Prevention guide for journalists (Spanish) 

FOPEA: In the face of the pandemic caused by the new coronavirus (COVID-19), FOPEA has shared the security recommendations of the Network of Journalists and the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) for journalists who cover the issue or who work in affected places.

BRAZIL: EC Assembly approves motion to repudiate Bolsonaro’s stance against journalists (Potuguese) 

FENAJ: On March 12 a plenary session of the Legislative Assembly of the State of Ceará approved a motion to repudiate the position of President Jair Bolsonaro (without a party) against the press and journalists. Authored by state deputy Renato Roseno (PSOL), the petition criticizes the president’s repeated assaults against the media. 

BRAZIL: Inter-American Human Rights Commission charges Brazil with not guaranteeing journalists’ work

Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas: A hearing of the IACHR was held to discuss complaints of restrictions to freedom of expression in Brazil on March 6, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, during the 175th IACHR hearings.

EL SALVADOR: Journalism must not promote violence against women or defend abusers (Spanish – Opinion) 

APES: Is it ethical for a media outlet to broadcast in a prime-time newscast the statements of an abuser in which he does not apologize for what he did, but rather cares more about the image before his followers after they find out that he was violent?

GUYANA: Guyana Press Association calls for end to media harassment

Jamaica Observer:  The Guyana Press Association (GPA) has called on political leaders and other stakeholders to “cease and desist from creating conditions for the perpetuation of media harassment and the dampening of press freedom”. In a statement yesterday, the GPA said that it has noted with “deep concern, the degree to which media operatives are increasingly becoming the targets of attacks related to the ongoing post-elections situation.” 

GUYANA: TTPBA stands in solidarity with Guyana Press Association

Trinidad Guardian: The Trinidad & Tobago Publishers & Broadcasters Association (TTPBA) says it is standing in solidarity with Guyanese journalists covering the recent national elections in Guyana—and its aftermath. 

NICARAGUA: The Resistance of the Press in Nicaragua

Havana Times: While persecuted by the dictatorship, independent journalism’s resistance keeps the flame of freedom of the press alive as the last reserve of a democracy.

TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO:  ‘Attack on press freedom’ (Paywall) 

Trinidad Express: An attack on press freedom. This is how media associations around the world have described the police raid on the Express newsroom. Police descended upon the Express on Wednesday, armed with a warrant to search the office of Express editor-in-chief Omatie Lyder for information to identify the source of Sunday Express investigative report. 

TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO: Attacking The Press In T&T (Opinion) 

Jamaica Gleaner: Trinidad and Tobago’s constitution, at Section 4(k), is the only one among the Commonwealth Caribbean countries in which “freedom of the press” is explicitly “recognised and declared” and posited as a fundamental right that has always “existed and shall continue to exist”. But the fact that this right is enshrined in the Trinidadian constitution doesn’t mean that the Trinidadian press, like media elsewhere in the region, isn’t subject to attacks and assaults by people who are discomfited by its spotlight on transparency, a critical ingredient in both democracy and the fight against corruption.

IRAN: Iran Continues Persecution Of Dissidents And Critics Amid Coronavirus Crisis

Radio Farda: Despite a deadly coronavirus epidemic, Iranian security forces and Judiciary continue the persecution of political dissidents, activists and critics as well as the ill-treatment of prisoners with great zeal.

ISRAEL: Bibi is watching you: Israel sends in the spies to tackle coronavirus (Analysis)

Middle East Eye: Surveillance measures proposed by Benjamin Netanyahu under the guise of pandemic threaten a system of governance already on life support

LEBANON: Knowing what really is going on – How media projects are changing the daily life of refugee camps

Deutsche Welle: Vibrant media scenes are developing in refugee camps in Lebanon as young citizen journalists produce video reports to be published on social media.

TURKEY: Call to end advertising ban on Evrensel

ECPMF: Turkey’s independent media outlet Evrensel risks losing public advertising funds due to 6-month indefinite ban imposed by state Ad Agency BIK. Evrensel has been target of continuous judicial & financial harassment for its critical reporting. ECPMF joins the call on BİK to lift the ban without delay.

TURKEY: Media bias is politicising the coronavirus pandemic coverage (Opinion) 

Middle East Monitor: Slanted news coverage has a major impact on public perceptions of the topic in question. Media bias doesn’t exclusively mean content bias, though; the presentation style of the report could also create prejudice. 

TURKEY: Turkey’s Pelican group: A state within a state

Deutsche Welle: After Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government set its sights on critical news outlet OdaTV, several of its journalists now face harsh prison sentences. Is Turkey’s president using a secret group to control judges?

UAE: Spreading rumours, fake information punishable by law: UAE Attorney-General

Zawya: The UAE government has been proactive in taking all the required precautionary measures to address the dangers posed by COVID-19, Dr. Hamad Saif Al Shamsi, UAE Attorney-General, said today.

REGIONAL: Building Regional Strategies for Media Development in the Middle East and North Africa (Report)

CIMA: Experts from 13 countries in the Middle East and North Africa agreed on the priorities that could provide the basis for greater collective action to defend independent media in the region. This report provides a summary of those deliberations.

CANADA: CBC/Radio-Canada and TV distributors make 24-hour news channels widely available

CBC News: Distributors collaborate with CBC to ensure Canadians have access to the latest health information. 

CANADA: CPJ calls on Canadian police to allow journalists to freely cover matters of public interest

CPJ: The Committee to Protect Journalists issued a letter on Monday to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police  requesting they allow reporters to cover matters of public interest.  The following is the complete letter.

CANADA: Radio-Canada Celebrates Francophonie Month!

CBC/Radio-Canada: In honour of Francophonie Month and International Francophonie Day on March 20, Radio-Canada will be bringing audiences a wide range of special programs and themed content on ICI TÉLÉ, ICI PREMIÈRE, ICI MUSIQUE and RADIO-CANADA OHDIO. 

U.S: California’s PBS Stations Announce Educational TV Schedule and Digital Learning Resources

The Journal: Public broadcasting stations in California have announced plans to support students sequestered at home because of COVID-19 by delivering schedules of daily education television programs that mesh with state learning standards.

U.S: NPR Supports All-Digital on AM, With Caveats

Radioworld: Asks FCC to further address interference concerns and build in a subsequent review plan.

U.S: PBS Responds to Coronavirus Pandemic With Programming and Online Content to Keep Americans Informed and Support Families and Educators (Statement)

PBS: As concern about the coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic continues to rise, PBS presents a collection of programs and resources with timely and relevant information on the spread of the virus. 

U.S: Public radio stations weigh whether to fundraise during coronavirus pandemic (Paywall)


U.S: Stations plan for staying on air with remote staff (Paywall)

Current: Public radio managers around the country are implementing measures to keep their signals on the air and staffers safe as they face the possibility of extended disruption to operations from the coronavirus pandemic.

How journalists around the world are covering the coronavirus

CJR: The coronavirus is shaping up to be a multifaceted crisis for US journalism. Mixed messages coming from President Trump and other administration officials—and boosted by Trump sycophants in the right-wing mediasphere—have muddied the picture we’ve tried to present to readers and viewers.

How the coronavirus could trigger a backslide on freedom around the world (Opinion – Paywall)

The Washington Post:

How to prepare for COVID-19 as a social media manager (Paywall)

Current: When it comes to public health crises, social media is at the front lines of so many things: emergency communications, official announcements, grassroots reports and, of course, rampant misinformation from both unwitting and bad actors.

Press freedom group stores censored articles in Minecraft library

AFP: A virtual library housing censored articles from around the world has been created within the hugely popular video game Minecraft by press freedom group Reporters Without Borders (RSF).

Reporting on coronavirus: ‘fear is almost as great a threat as the disease’

The Guardian: Writers from China, Italy and the UK explain how we are cooperating to produce measured reporting on a global crisis. 

RSF unveils 20/2020 list of press freedom’s digital predators

RSF: To mark this year’s World Day Against Cyber-Censorship, celebrated on 12 March, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is unveiling its list of press freedom’s 20 worst digital predators in 2020 – companies and government agencies that use digital technology to spy on and harass journalists and thereby jeopardize our ability to get news and information.

The picture is wrong, we are leaving out some important aspects of news: Ulrik Haagerup, Constructing Tomorrow’s News (Watch)

Asia Radio Today: Ulrik Haagerup, Founder and CEO of the Constructive Institute for journalism is the keynote speaker today at a Judith Nielsen Institute function titled Constructing Tomorrow’s News in Australia.

What do sports journalists do when there are no sports to cover?

Nieman Lab: From high school to the pros, the games that filled sports sections have nearly all been called off. “We don’t have a guidebook on how to cover sports when sports aren’t being played.

PSM Weekly is available via email. You can subscribe by signing up to our mailing list at the bottom of the page or email editor@publicmediaalliance.org.

All PSM Weekly stories are provided for interest and their relevance to public service media issues, they do not necessarily reflect the views of the Public Media Alliance.

All headlines are sourced from their original story.

If you have any suggestions for our weekly round-ups, please email PMA at editor@publicmediaalliance.org.

Header Image: A young man using a professional camcorder outdoor. Credit: porpeller/iStock