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Public Broadcasters explain what diversity means to them

Swiss Info: How does a public service media reflect the diversity of the community it serves? For World Radio Day, we joined forces with other public service media to discuss what this year’s theme, “diversity”, means at our organisations, and how it comes across in what we publish.

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Will media freedom in the Philippines survive?

Al Jazeera: President Rodrigo Duterte takes legal action to shut down the country’s biggest broadcaster. It has been described as the most severe attack on media freedom in the Philippines.

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EGYPT: Egypt removes media groups from list of ‘terror entities’

Middle East Monitor: The Egyptian parliament is removing satellite channels, radio stations and social media from the definition of “a terror entity” to try and clean up its image for Western media. The decision comes after criticism from within the government that including them on the definition could be used to say Egypt violates free speech.

ETHIOPIA: Ethiopia Approves Controversial Law Curbing Hate Speech

Voice of America: Ethiopian lawmakers on Thursday approved a controversial law aimed at curbing hate speech and disinformation, especially online, just months ahead of a major election. The law’s approval, with 23 lawmakers opposing and two abstaining, came amid concerns over widespread online false information and hate speech that some observers blame for ethnic tensions in the East African nation.

GHANA: Media urged to protect the freedom bestowed on them

Ghana Web: Mr Samuel Nartey George, the Ranking Member on Communications, has called on the media to play a critical role in protecting the freedoms bestowed on them by the Constitution.

GHANA: Radio in Ghana: From Mouthpiece of Coup Plotters to Giving Voice to the People

The Conversation Africa: The roots of broadcasting in Ghana – particularly radio – are traced to its former colonial power under Sir Arnold Hodson who was British governor of the Gold Coast in 1935. The short-term objective was to enable the crown to communicate with its subjects in the colonies and to spread propaganda.

MOZAMBIQUE: Misa Urges Authorities to Act Against Threats to the Media

All Africa: The Mozambican chapter of the regional press freedom body MISA (Media Institute of South Africa) has called on the State authorities to act vigorously against threats to freedom of expression and of the press that appear in social media.

NAMIBIA: Radio accessible in 98% of the country

The Namibian: Radio remains the most reliable, affordable, accessible, and timely medium of communication used to reach a large number of audiences in Namibia.

NIGERIA: Acting NBC Director-General assumes office

Premium Times Nigeria: The Director, Broadcast Policy and Research at the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Armstrong Idachaba, has resumed office as the acting Director-General of the agency. PREMIUM TIMES exclusively reported how Mr Idachaba was directed to take the position following the suspension of Modibbo Kawu by the federal government at the prompting of the anti-graft agency, ICPC.

NIGERIA: How Nigeria’s police used telecom surveillance to lure and arrest journalists

CPJ: CPJ reports that since 2017, there have been three cases across Nigeria where police used phone records to lure and then arrest journalists currently facing criminal charges for their work. In each case, police used the records to identify people with a relationship to a targeted journalist, detained those people, and then forced them to facilitate the arrest. 

NIGERIA: UNDRR advocates Journalists support in tackling disaster risks

Voice of Nigeria: Journalists have been urged to collaborate and build a stronger partnership with the government who are the policymakers, so as to focus more on proactive reporting of disasters risk reduction and management.

SOMALIA: Journalists ‘under siege’ in spate of killings and censorship during Farmajo presidency – new report

Amnesty International: Journalists shot dead by police and killed in car bomb attacks, others have been forced to flee the country. Amnesty International is concerned about suppression of media freedom ahead of this year’s elections.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC launches “No Means No” campaign against rape, femicide (Watch)

SABC News: The SABC Education ‘No Means No’ campaign is aimed at tackling the dire situation and scourge of femicide and rape in South Africa. South African women need to be empowered and taught that it is okay to say NO when they do not want to engage in any sexual activity. This is the predominant message highlighted in the SABC’s “No Means No” campaign aimed at tackling the dire situation and scourge of femicide and rape in South Africa.

ZIMBABWE: Media environment far from ideal (Analysis)

The Independent Zimbabwe: ZIMBABWE’S 2018 elections, coming on the backdrop of the ouster of former president Robert Mugabe in November 2017, were held amid great expectations of a new era that would spur the country’s socio-economic development in a concomitantly open and free democratic space. 

ZIMBABWE: MISA Zimbabwe Calls For Reforms At ZBC

Via Broadcast Media Africa: The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) Zimbabwe has called on the government to play its critical role in enforcing reforms at the national broadcaster, Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC).

GENERAL: Radio Broadcasting Industry Leaders To Convene For International Convention In Maseru, Lesotho (Event)

Broadcast Media Africa: Broadcast Media Africa (BMA) in collaboration with the Southern African Broadcasters Association (SABA) will be convening the high-level International Radio and Digital Audio Convention of Southern Africa on the 21st to 23rd of May 2020 in Maseru, Lesotho.

GENERAL: Radio Gains in Diversity in Most of Africa

New Zimbabwe: Ensuring diversity in radio broadcasting is crucial for democracy in Africa as radio remains one of the most popular media. The picture is still patchy. Many African countries have improved significantly. But there are still nations where promoters of radio diversity face an uphill battle.

CHINA: China tightens control over media amid coronavirus outbreak (Listen)

ABC: Beijing is extremely controlling of any media presence in the province and they’re only marginally less controlling of media in Hubei province and its capital Wuhan – the epicentre of the coronavirus or CoVID-19 outbreak.

CHINA: Podcast: Coronavirus, China’s press, and the disappearance of Chen Quishi (Listen)

CJR: IN CHINA, JOURNALISTS are conditioned to keep their online activity apolitical. But the coronavirus outbreak took censors by surprise. In the panic, editors were temporarily emboldened. Han Zhang, who is on the editorial staff at the New Yorker, sat down with Kyle Pope, editor and publisher of CJR, to discuss the flow of outbreak information in the Chinese media, how many coronavirus fatalities may go unreported, and her last interview with citizen journalist Chen Quishi, before he disappeared.

HONG KONG: Former leader meddles over satirical content on public broadcaster

IFJ: Former Hong Kong leader Leung Chun-ying has called for the sacking of the director of broadcasting for Hong Kong’s public broadcaster, Radio Television Hong Kong (RTHK). The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) warns against the political interference and meddling by the former chief executive in Hong Kong’s media.

INDIA: BES India showcases DRM expansion plans

Asia Radio Today: At Delhi’s Broadcast Engineering Show (BES) there was a big contingent of companies showing DRM transmission and receiver technology.

INDIA: How one Kashmiri magazine survived a press crackdown

CJR: The Kashmir Walla began as a blog in 2009, when Shah was still at university. A few years later it had grown into a full-fledged magazine; its current staff numbers fourteen. It covers sensitive political topics such as protests, armed conflict, and the censorship of dissidents, as well as local stories about power cuts, entertainment, and Kashmir’s youngest rugby coach. In 2017, local police detained and interrogated Shah for eight hours and confiscated his laptop. In 2018 his car was vandalized and his residence teargassed. 

INDIA: India’s Privacy Bill Will Alter How it Regulates Social Media Platforms, Not all of it Good  (Opinion)

The Wire: The Bill gives the Centre the power to designate certain social media intermediaries as significant data fiduciaries..

JAPAN: It has nothing to do with drugs and religions. NHK asks performers for a pledge (Japanese)

Asahi Shimbun: NHK asks for pledge to regular actors on regular programs since April that they will not use illegal drugs or engage in antisocial forces before signing a formal contract. Yuki Kida, Director General of Broadcasting, announced at a press conference on the 13th.

JAPAN: Simultaneous distribution of NHK, “Chase watching” possible. Some commercial broadcasters are considering follow NHK (Japanese – Paywall)

Asahi Shimbun: Interviews with multiple parties revealed that NHK Plus, a simultaneous Internet distribution service for television programs launched by NHK in March, will be equipped with a follow-up function that allows users to view the programs from the beginning even while the programs are being broadcast.

MALAYSIA: Tempo editor proposes key principles for Malaysian media council

Free Malaysia Today: The chief editor of Indonesian news magazine Tempo has called for adherence to two key principles in the establishment of Malaysia’s independent media council.

MALAYSIA: ‘Unsustainable’ media freedom can be taken away anytime, reminds academic

Malaysiakini: The media freedom in the new Malaysia is a fragile one that can be taken away any time by those in power because the main structures supporting the status quo are still in place, said academic V Gayathry.

MYANMAR: Myanmar groups seek restoration of internet access in Rakhine

Myanmar Times: More than 100 local civil society organisations urged on Monday the government to restore as soon as possible internet access to five townships in troubled Rakhine and Chin states.

MYANMAR: Myanmar Lawmakers Submit Bill to Amend Controversial Privacy Law

The Irrawaddy: The Myanmar Lower House’s Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs has submitted a draft bill to amend the Law Protecting the Privacy and Security of Citizens—legislation that rights groups have criticized as a threat to freedom of expression.

PAKISTAN: Pakistan government secretly passes strict social media regulations

CPJ: On January 28, the federal cabinet approved the “Citizens Protection (Against Online Harm) Rules, 2020,” a set of regulations on social media content, without public consultation; the measures were enacted in secret and were reported yesterday by The News International, an English-language daily. A copy of the regulations, which was leaked online, shows that the rules empower the government to fine or ban social media platforms over their users’ content. 

PHILIPPINES: Business groups call for ABS-CBN franchise renewal 

Rappler: Four of the biggest business groups in the Philippines called on Congress to act on bills filed by several lawmakers to renew the broadcasting franchise of media giant ABS-CBN.

THAILAND: Did TV stations cross the line in Korat? 

The Asean Post: On 8 February, an armed gunman entered the Terminal 21 shopping mall in Nakhon Ratchasima (popularly known as Korat), and began shooting indiscriminately and taking hostages. (…) Many of the news outlets refused to heed the request and continued to broadcast events as they unfolded. It has now been reported that the errant cable TV and news channels that ignored the official orders “will face consequences”.

AUSTRALIA: ABC raid: Australian public broadcaster loses legal challenge

BBC: Australia’s national broadcaster has lost its legal challenge to controversial police raids on its Sydney newsroom last year. 

AUSTRALIA: ABC Instagram video trial delivers news for young Australians, by young Australians

ABC News: When the 2019 ABC News cadets were asked to come up with a way to attract new audiences to the national broadcaster, we knew immediately that our focus should be on young Australians.

AUSTRALIA: How Australia does state funded youth radio (Listen)

RNZ: RNZ announced last week Concert FM would move off FM and become fully automated on an AM frequency to make way for a new youth radio station. We speak to Zanda Wilson in Australia about what happens there.

FIJI: UN urges Fiji to amend Media Decree

RNZ: Fiji’s government has been urged to respect the rights of journalists and remove legislation which restricts press freedom in the Pacific nation. In its Universal Periodic Review report published in December, the United Nations’ Human Rights Council called on Fiji to amend its Media Industry Development Decree 2010.

NEW ZEALAND: A model for RNZ’s new youth service? (Listen)

RNZ: RNZ’s planned new music-based outlet to hook younger people has been met with scepticism  – even scorn – during the current controversy over RNZ Concert. RNZ bosses and pundits have singled out Australia’s Triple J as a possible model. Mediawatch asks the Kiwi in charge of its content what it does and whether it would work here. 

NEW ZEALAND: Broadcasting merger: Cost is the great unknown for RNZ boss

RNZ: Both RNZ and TVNZ’s chief executives see merit in a proposed merger of the two public broadcasters, but RNZ chief executive Paul Thompson warns a culture change would be needed. A business case to create a new super public broadcasting entity is under way, after Cabinet sign-off in late January. The plan is for a public broadcaster that would receive government funding, but would also be able to raise commercial revenue, and it would operate across a range of platforms.

NEW ZEALAND: Funding for Māori Television ‘inadequate’, board chair says

RNZ: Ahead of a major Māori media review, Māori Television has reminded MPs the network hasn’t had a funding increase in 11 years. At a Māori Affairs Select Committee yesterday, Māori Television’s executive team laid bare the funding disparities it continues to face. More than a million viewers tuned in to Māori Television last year to watch the national kapa haka festival Te Matatini, one of many cultural events the network has long had exclusive access to.

NEW ZEALAND: How will RNZ youth proposal impact Pacific Media Network? (Listen)

RNZ: Radio New Zealand’s plan for a new music service, targeting 18 to 34 year-olds including Māori and Pacific audiences, have triggered questions about what the plan could mean for another state funded broadcaster the Pacific Media Network. PMN currently runs a radio station targeting Pasifika youth.

NEW ZEALAND: RNZ holds off on plans to restructure Concert

RNZ: Last week, RNZ announced a proposal to remove Concert from its FM frequencies and automate it, and use the FM frequency for a new youth station. Chief executive Paul Thompson said he has met with staff in the music department this afternoon to withdraw the proposal.

NEW ZEALAND: TVNZ boss: RNZ and TVNZ merger could see more journalists, not fewer

NZ Herald: TVNZ chief executive Kevin Kenrick says a possible merger with Radio NZ into a new public broadcaster wouldn’t necessarily mean job losses – and could even mean the opposite.

ARMENIA: Armenia debates cracking down on “fake news” and hate speech

Eurasianet: The legislative efforts come after long struggles between the government and a hostile media, much of which is controlled by figures close to the former regime.

ARMENIA: NGO: Armenian Journalists Under ‘Growing Harassment’

Voice of America: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is raising alarm over an “increase in the harassment” of journalists in Armenia, who the watchdog says are being subjected to defamation suits and attacks on their right to protect their sources. 

BULGARIA: Bulgarian pubcaster facing bankruptcy

Broadband TV News: The Bulgarian public broadcaster BNT is currently running a deficit of BGN40 million (€20.45 million). Moreover, reports Capital, quoting its general director Emil Koslukov, the figure could rise up to BGN71 million further by the end of the year.

FRANCE: The CSA satisfied with the results of Delphine Ernotte at the head of France Télévisions (French)

Le Monde: This opinion was all the more awaited as it preceded by a few weeks the call for candidates to decide on the appointment of a new boss for the public group. Delphine Ernotte is a candidate.

FRANCE & MALTA: France Probes Financing Around Maltese Journalist’s Killing

The New York Times: France’s national prosecutors’ office opened a preliminary investigation Wednesday of shady French finance trails involving unnamed individuals who are suspected of a role in the killing of Maltese investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

GERMANY: ARD to drop SD satellite distribution in 2021 [UPDATE]

Broadband TV News: 

GERMANY: Directors want longer “daily topics” with more regional topics (German)

Horizont: The directors of the ARD want to extend the news program “Tagesthemen” and give regional topics more space. That was announced by ARD chairman Tom Buhrow on Wednesday after a meeting with his artistic colleagues from the other ARD stations.

ITALY: Biagio Agnes Award: Roberto Sergio “Proud for the success of the Rai Radio programs, the confirmation of a renewed vitality”

RAI: Rai Radio Director proud for Radio1 “All the minute by minute” awards and “Radio 2 social club”. 

LATVIA: Latvian president suggests restricting non-EU language TV

LSM: Latvian President Egils Levits has suggested supplementing the bill on Amendments to the Electronic Mass Media Law to include a stipulation that TV service providers must provide subscribers with TV programs distributed in Latvia as part of the basic program package, and if additional TV programs are included, then at least 80% of them should contain content originally created in a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) official language, according to the Chancery of the President of Latvia on February 11.

SPAIN: The head of CCOO who does not want Vox on TVE: “You have to apply preventive censorship” (Spanish) 

El Español: Roberto Lakidain, member of the board of the Executive Commission of Workers Commissions (CCOO) of RTVE issued a statement: “ Preventive censorship must be applied to ultra-right discourses that violate the minority rights and that undermine democratic coexistence,” he explains in EL ESPAÑOL.

SPAIN: From the Judiciary to RTVE, the unrenewed institutions because of the political blockade between PSOE and PP (Spanish) 

RTVE: The absence of a solid majority in the respective left and right blocs make it  very difficult today to bring together the large majorities necessary in Congress and the Senate to renovate institutions and public bodies  that have long since expired with their domes expired or in a state of provisionality such as the General Council of the Judiciary, the Constitutional Court, the Court of Auditors, the Ombudsman and the Board of Directors of RTVE. 

SWEDEN: Fewer letters and more sounds (Swedish – Blog)

Sveriges Radio: There will be fewer written letters in the Swedish Radio’s digital channels and a developed audio story, writes here Josef el Mahdi and Ulf Reneland, who drive the work together with the news editions to make the company’s strategy the sound in focus.

UK: BBC Chairman says scrapping licence fee would ‘weaken the nation’ (Paywall)

The Telegraph: Sir David Clementi warns subscription model could mean paying to watch royal weddings and the Olympics 

UK: BBC licence fee: Tory MPs warn No 10 against fight

BBC News: Two senior Tory MPs have warned Downing Street not to pick a fight with the BBC amid reports it wants the broadcaster “massively pruned back”.

UK: Britain to Create Regulator for Internet Content

The New York Times: To push Google, Facebook and other internet giants to police their own platforms, Britain said its media watchdog would become an internet authority.

UK: This government threatens the principle at the heart of the BBC (Opinion) 

The Guardian: We urgently need to protect the corporation from No 10’s obsession with public broadcasting. Over the past seven years, there has been one director general of the BBC and eight culture secretaries. 

UK: UK should be more innovative in defending press freedom, says Amal Clooney

The Guardian: Amal Clooney, the UK government’s special envoy on media freedom, has renewed her criticism of Donald Trump as she acknowledged that her ambitious plans to combat media repression globally were being launched into a “pretty bleak” human rights landscape.

UK: We won’t be bullied by left or right, says news boss at besieged BBC

The Observer: The BBC was taken aback by leftwing attacks on its general election coverage, Fran Unsworth, the broadcaster’s head of news and current affairs, has admitted in a frank assessment of the political pressures that are undermining efforts to preserve the licence fee.

UKRAINE: Ukrainian Police Major, Ex-Convict Wanted in Arson of RFE/RL’s Reporter’s Car

Voice of America: General’s Office in Lviv suspects an underworld criminal and a police major of collusion in the arson of a vehicle belonging to RFE/RL correspondent Halyna Tereshchuk. Iryna Didenko, the lead prosecutor of the Lviv region, signed the charge sheets for the two suspects on Feb. 11.

GENERAL: IPI launches new protocol for newsrooms to address online harassment

IPI: Guidelines drawn from best practices collected from experts and leading news outlets in Europe

GENERAL: Joint media statement calling for the protection of media freedom in “E-Evidence draft regulation”


BRAZIL: Chauvinist attacks on Brazilian journalist who reported illegal use of social networks in 2018 campaign generate indignation

Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas: Folha de S. Paulo journalist Patrícia Campos Mello was once again the target of a series of attacks on her reputation on Feb. 11, after the testimony of a witness to the Joint Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry (CPMI, for its acronym in Portuguese) that investigates fake news in the 2018 Brazilian presidential campaign.

BRAZIL: TV Cidade pays a share of R $ 544,500 to seven journalists from Ceará (Portuguese) 

FENAJ: TV Cidade, an affiliate of TV Record in Ceará, recognized the debt and deposited in court R $ 544,522 thousand referring to the calculations of the lawsuit filed by the Union of Journalists of Ceará (Sindjorce) against the broadcaster in 2007. Thus, the seven benefited journalists for the process for noncompliance with normative sentences, they will be summoned to receive the funds as soon as the 2nd Labor Court in Fortaleza releases the payment, by requesting the legal advice of the union entity.

ECUADOR: Explosive device detonated at home of journalist in Ecuador

CPJ: On February 8, an explosive device was detonated in the home of journalist Víctor Aguirre in the city of Naranjal, southern Ecuador, damaging a refrigerator and leaving a hole in the floor of his garage. The device did not harm him or his pregnant wife, who were both home at the time. 

GUATEMALA: PDH asks MP for speed in the case of harassed journalists (Spanish)

Prensa Libre: The Human Rights Ombudsman, Jordán Rodas, sympathized with the more than 15 journalists who were harassed through phone calls and advocated promptness in the investigation.

GUYANA: DPI increased state ads to SN in January

Stabroek News: After not placing any state advertisements with Stabroek News (SN) for the month of October, 2019,  the Department of Public Information (DPI) has gradually been increasing allocations and the figure for January was roughly 26% of the total number of ads placed with the daily newspapers.

HONDURAS: “From Informational Silence to Exodus”: Honduras and Freedom of Expression in the last four years (Spanish)

C-Libre: The exercise of freedom of expression and press in Honduras, faces a violent outlook and little response from the justice agencies, according to the Report “From Information Silence to Exodus”. Under this context and within the framework of the 50th anniversary of the Journalism Career of the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH), C-Libre highlights in this report, violence against communication and information workers, and the tightening of national legal regulations in the access and control-censorship of information.

JAMAICA: McKenzie Slams Lucea Mayor For Media Hate Outburst

The Gleaner: Lucea Mayor Sheridan Samuels has been scolded by Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie for his caustic criticism of the media during Thursday’s sitting of the Hanover Municipal Corporation (HMC). Samuels had declared that he hated the media and was particularly upset about recent news reports that the parish was in a dirty and unhealthy state.

PUERTO RICO: New Laws Obstruct Investigative Journalism in Puerto Rico

Havana Times: Before Governor Ricardo Rosselló gave in to public pressure to resign in early August, he quietly signed a pair of laws that severely limit access to public information in Puerto Rico. The new laws —the Open Data Law (122) and the Transparency Law (141)—, increase the number of business days agencies can delay submitting requested information or documents, and do not provide precise definitions of the term “public document,” according to a CPJ review. They also require all information requests to be sent via mail or email, prohibiting requests over the phone or in person.

MEXICO: Mexican police attack reporters during protest in Veracruz

CPJ: According to news reports and journalists CPJ spoke with on February 12 and 13, members of the Fuerza Civil, a Veracruz state police force, hurled death threats at Julia Santín and Brígido López, founders and reporters of news website Los Llanos del Sotaviento, as well as Edna López of news website A Título Personal.

TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO: Sedition laws back in effect, as Appeal Court suspends Seepersad’s ruling

Trinidad Express:  Appeal Court judge Justice Alice Yorke-Soo Hon suspended the order of Justice Frank Seepersad who found last month that parts of the law were unconstitutional, as it infringed on the rights of citizens to freedom of expression, thought and freedom of the press. That appeal was filed by the Office of the Attorney general after Justice Seepersad refused to grant an application by the State for its suspension immediately following his ruling on January 13.

VENEZUELA: Pro-government groups attack reporters covering Juan Guaidó’s return to Venezuela

CPJ: Last week supporters of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro beat and robbed journalists and media workers at the Simón Bolívar International Airport, outside Caracas, while they were covering the arrival of Guaidó, the president of the National Assembly who has been recognized by some countries as the interim president of Venezuela, according to journalists who spoke to CPJ and reports on social media by Venezuelan press freedom organizations Espacio Público and SNTP.

VENEZUELA: Venezuelan reporters reinvent themselves abroad with print and online journalistic ventures

Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas: Panas Digitales promotes collaborative journalism through its own co-founders who are in various countries. The digital newsroom of this online outlet have the participation of Mata’s former co-workers from media company Cadena Capriles of Venezuela: Hilda Carmona (Peru), Desireé Lozano (Venezuela), Doris Barrios (Italy) and María Camarillo (Dominican Republic).

GENERAL: How Independent Journalists in Latin America are Finding New Ways to Hold Power to Account

Nieman Report: Despite social turmoil, financial woes, and repressive regimes, Latin American reporters are keeping the journalism alive

ISRAEL: Netanyahu blasts public broadcaster for suspending anchor who sang in his video

Times of Israel: The Kan public broadcasting corporation on Thursday suspended one of its anchors because he appeared in a video with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with the suspension then drawing fire from the premier and his right-wing allies. News presenter Erel Segal was suspended, pending further notice, after the video was uploaded to Netanyahu’s Twitter account earlier Thursday.

LEBANON: Lebanon journalist assaulted by police while covering anti-government protests

Middle East Monitor: Lebanese economic and financial affairs journalist, Mohammad Zbeeb, was reportedly assaulted by police after leaving a talk in the Beirut district of Hamra yesterday evening. The Alternative Journalists syndicate said the attack is “an attack on all journalists, the revolution and a crime against freedoms”. 

PALESTINE: Reporters unable to cover West Bank protests against “deal of the century”

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the many cases of journalists being injured or otherwise prevented from covering protests in the West Bank against US President Trump’s “deal of the century” peace plan, and calls on the authorities to ensure that the media are able to cover developments despite the surge in tension.

TURKEY & MALTA: TRT World expands distribution to Malta

Advanced Television: The Turkish public broadcaster TRT’s international news platform TRT World has entered into a partnership with the Maltese telco Melita. The English language TRT World will now be available to Melita TV subscribers on extended and extended basic TV products.

TURKEY: Turkey’s main opposition boycotts CNN Turk in protest of press censorship

Al Monitor: CNN Turk — a franchise of CNN, the US broadcasting giant owned by Warner Media — has been plunged into the spotlight in the media freedom controversy in Turkey as the main opposition decided to boycott the channel over its support of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government.

REGIONAL: The New Wave of Middle-East Media Repression (Commentary)

Project Syndicate: Egypt and Saudi Arabia have shown that, when a government lacks legitimacy, its best chance of holding onto power is by suppressing unfavorable information. But the experiences of Iraq and Lebanon suggest that this approach has limits in political systems that depend on power-sharing arrangements.

GENERAL: Conference recommends enhancing social media freedom and security

MENAFN: The two-day International Conference on ‘Social Media: Challenges and Ways to Promote Freedoms and Protect Activists” concluded yesterday proposing a set of recommendations for the states, social media companies, human rights organisations and other stakeholders.

CANADA: Conservative leadership candidate Erin O’Toole would slash funding, privatize CBC English TV and digital

National Post: Conservative leadership candidate Erin O’Toole is promising to effectively end CBC’s English-language public broadcasting operation, except for radio. But he says he won’t cut Radio-Canada, CBC’s French-language division.

CANADA & GERMANY: Media Advisory: CBC/Radio-Canada and ZDF to announce new partnership

CBC/Radio-Canada: During the 70th Berlin International Film Festival (Berlinale 2020), CBC/Radio-Canada President & CEO Catherine Tait and ZDF Director General Thomas Bellut will announce a new collaboration between the two public broadcasters. Ms. Tait and Mr. Bellut will be joined by the Honourable Stéphane Dion, Canadian Ambassador to Germany and Special Envoy to the European Union and Europe.

CANADA: There’s a month left to weigh in on CBC’s next broadcast licence

CBC/Radio-Canada: Now’s your chance to weigh in on the future of the CBC. The national broadcaster is in the process of applying for a new broadcast licence from the CRTC. As part of that process, the regulator is inviting all Canadians to answer a series of questions ranging from how the broadcaster could improve its programming to whether that programming adequately reflects Canada’s diversity.

US: Katherine Arno Named CPB Vice President, Community Service Grants and Station Initiatives

CPB: The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) today named Katherine Arno as Vice President, Community Service Grants and Station Initiatives, effective February 17, 2020. She will oversee the development and implementation of policy for the Community Service Grant Program, which annually distributes more than $300 million to support public television and radio stations throughout the country. She will also oversee initiatives to help stations improve their ability to provide strong public service to their communities.  

US: PBS KIDS Wins Kidscreen Award for Channel of the Year

PBS: Winners of the 2020 Kidscreen Awards were announced on Tuesday, February 11 during the Kidscreen Summit in Miami. The annual awards celebrate the year’s best in children’s media. PBS KIDS took home “Channel of the Year” for the second year in a row, and for the sixth time since the award’s inception in 2011.

US: Pennsylvania stations collaborate on multimedia response to opioid crisis

Current: In our series on innovative and replicable content and engagement strategies submitted to Local That Works, this profile summarizes an unprecedented partnership among seven public TV stations to participate in a statewide response to the opioid epidemic. Battling Opioids, a project of Pennsylvania Public Media, was one of four finalists in the 2019 contest.

US: “Public Radio Music Day” to be Celebrated Nationwide on April 16th

NPR: The noncomMUSIC Alliance today announced that the inaugural Public Radio Music Day will take place on April 16, 2020, with a nationwide celebration uniting public radio music stations, fans, and performers to spread the word about the special role public radio plays in the music world locally and nationally. More than 20 million listeners weekly tune in to hundreds of local noncommercial music stations across America to discover, learn about, and enjoy an eclectic mix of music selections, artists, and genres that are, in many cases, available only on public radio.

US: Trump budget again proposes zeroing out public broadcasting funds

Current: For the fourth consecutive year, President Trump has proposed eliminating funding for CPB. The president’s fiscal year 2021 budget proposes rescinding all but $30 million of CPB’s appropriation in FY21 and FY22. The $30 million would cover closeout costs, which the document said are estimated to be $58 million over the phase-out period.

US: Unloved by Trump, NPR Carries On (Paywall)

New York Times: First President Trump questioned the existence of National Public Radio in a tweet. Then, as part of the annual budget request released last Monday, he recommended slashing federal funding to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the body that distributes taxpayer dollars to NPR and other public media outlets, to $0 by 2023.

Celebrating the diversity of radio, the medium people use the most

UN News: In a message for World Radio Day 2020, celebrated on Thursday, António Guterres highlighted how the pioneering medium celebrates diversity and contributes to global peace. “Radio offers a wonderful display of diversity in its formats, in its languages, and among radio professionals themselves. This sends an important message to the world”, the UN chief said.

Delivering next gen catch-up services (Paywall)

IBC: Broadcasters are turning to VOD platforms to compete with the growing number of OTTs. During IBC365’s latest webinar a panel of experts examined how broadcasters can build platforms with limited budgets.

How fact-checking and reporting mix

CJR: FACT, AND THE CHECKING OF FACT, HAS DOMINATED THE PUBLIC DISCOURSE in the three years since Donald Trump became president. Trump falsely cries “fake news.” The Washington Post tracks every documentable lie and misstatement the president utters: Trump has been caught lying or misrepresenting the truth well over 16,000 times since taking office. Fox News contributes to the ignorance loop by disseminating disinformation to millions of viewers. 

How to make news more engaging for younger audiences

Journalism.co.uk: With the under-35s spending less than eight minutes a week reading news, the media need to rethink the news agendas, change tone of voice and reinvent story formats to win them back

New Video Series Examines Best Practices for Making Investigative Journalism Sustainable

GIJN: One of the greatest challenges for investigative journalism is making it pay. It’s hard enough for journalism in general, harder still for public-interest journalism, but hardest of all for investigative journalism which takes time and money and can carry substantial risk. Large commercial media organizations can more easily support investigative teams. But for nonprofit investigative journalism organizations, like most GIJN members, this challenge keeps journalists and their business managers awake at night.

Watching the watchdogs: Pegasus software and the surveillance of journalists

IPI: In the past five years a growing trend has emerged of autocratic governments around the world using sophisticated spyware tools purchased from private Western companies to snoop on journalists.

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Header image: Set of NBC Good Morning Namibia. Credit: PMA

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