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

Click on the drop-down menus below to reveal the latest regional stories.

EGYPT: Egyptian regime takes over four independent media

RSF: ​Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is alarmed by the roundabout nationalization of four independent media outlets – two daily newspapers and two websites – that is currently under way in Egypt. It is the government’s new method for seizing control of media with supposed links to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.

ERITREA & ETHIOPIA: BBC launches services for Ethiopia and Eritrea

BBC News: The BBC World Service has launched three websites for Ethiopia and neighbouring Eritrea as part of its biggest expansion since the 1940s.

KENYA & SIERRA LEONE: How media and ethnic politics intertwine in Africa

RFI: Journalists Kelvin Lewis in Sierra Leone and Linus Kaikai in Kenya discuss how best to navigate the murky waters of ethnic politics, especially when reporting on elections. They found out that even though their countries were on opposite sides of the continent, they shared the same concerns over how political blocs play on ethnicity to win votes.

LESOTHO: Media Caught Up in Bloody Lesotho Crisis

Via All Africa: Rights groups are demanding the release of a Lesotho radio station owner that authorities have closed amid the government’s crackdown on dissenting voices. Candi Ramainoane has been detained following the closure of MoAfrika FM last week.

LIBERIA: The Need to Transform LBS into Public Service Broadcaster Is Ever Present

Front Page Africa: A bill to transform state radio – the Liberia Broadcasting System into a Public Service Broadcaster, has been tabled before the House of Representatives for the second time in nine years.

NAMIBIA: SABA to host digitalisation conference

The Southern Times: The Southern African Broadcasting Association (SABA) will host its fifth Africa and Digitalisation conference in Windhoek, Namibia, from the 25-29 September.

NIGERIA: NGE, media and democracy (Opinion)

The Nation: A snapshot of the Nigerian media landscape, its current condition and the role it plays in democracy.

NIGERIA: Soldiers beat journalists in Abia State press centre

RSF: After this week’s attack on journalists by soldiers in Umuahia, the capital of the southeastern state of Abia, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urges the federal government to send a strong message on the need to end violence and abuses against reporters and respect their work throughout the country.

SIERRA LEONE: Digital reporting: A new frontier for newsrooms in Sierra Leone

Code for Africa: How Code for Sierra Leone is working to help journalists catch-up with modern reporting techniques.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC wants R3bn bailout

Channel24: The beleaguered South African public broadcaster urgently wants a massive R3bn bailout to keep it from collapse, more than double its last government bailout of R1.47bn in 2009.

TOGO: Gagging of the Media: Journalists Barred from covering Demonstration

MFWA: Two senior journalists were prevented from covering the recent demonstrations in Togo by the authorities in the country, with the camera of one of them seized.

ZIMBABWE: Baz Contests Kwese Ruling

AllAfrica: The Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) has approached the Supreme Court contesting a High Court decision allowing Econet Media Limited (Mauritius) to distribute Kwese TV satellite content to the Zimbabwean viewership.

REGIONAL: BBC Worldwide inks first content sales deal with Kwesè TV

BBC: BBC Worldwide announced today that it has concluded its first content sales deal with new pan-African broadcast network Kwesè TV, a subsidiary of Econet Media.

AZERBAIJAN: RFE/RL files case against Azerbaijan in Strasbourg Court

OC Media: Almost three years after the offices of Radio Azadlig, the Azerbaijani branch of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), were raided in Baku, the media group is appealing to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).

AZERBAIJAN: Statement from the Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety: Azerbaijani Authorities Must Release All Journalists

IRFS: While this week’s release of Azadliq newspaper executive director Faig Amirli, Turan information agency director Mehman Aliyev and blogger Alexander Lapshin from their places of detention should be taken as a step in the right direction, it is only the first step. The Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Security (IRFS) calls on the Azerbaijani authorities to immediately free all other journalists and government critics remaining behind bars.

CAMBODIA: Radio Free Asia suspends operations in Cambodia

CPJ: The U.S. Congress-funded Radio Free Asia (RFA) has suspended its news operations in Cambodia amid a rising clampdown on independent media, according to news reports.

INDIA: Doordarshan celebrates its 58th anniversary

City Today: Doordarshan, the national broadcaster has completed 58 years on Friday. On this occasion, Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani congratulated DD and said it has changed the life of every Indian.

INDIA: Doordarshan’s plans to sell prime time slots put on hold

Exchange 4 media: Barely days before two leading production houses were to launch their programmes in the prime time slots on Doordarshan around mid-August, the Information & Broadcasting ministry reportedly decided to put the slot selling process on hold.

INDIA: Inside the tiny fact-checking team combating fake news in India


MYANMAR: Covering the Rohingya: Separating fact from fiction

Al Jazeera: We examine how Myanmar’s government and military shape the media narrative surrounding the Rohingya crisis.

MYANMAR: The state, the military and the market: Capture in the new Burmese media landscape (Publication)


PAKISTAN: English language PTV World costing govt Rs105 million a year

The Express Tribune: PTV World, the state-run English language TV channel, has been unable to break even since its launch in 2013 and has incurred a loss of more than Rs350 million as of June 2015, auditors have found.

PHILIPPINES: Mandatory TV, radio airtime for infomercials, public service sought

Manila Bulletin: Call for all radio and television broadcasting companies to allocate at least five minutes a day to air public service announcements and infomercials on laws, social welfare,  public safety,  procedures, and other matters of national interest.

SOUTH KOREA: Strife in South Korea Over Politics in Public Broadcasting

The Diplomat: Accusations of political bias run rampant, with two broadcasting unions going on strike.

SOUTH KOREA: Viewers turning away from major broadcasters to cable networks

The Korea Times: KBS, MBC and SBS, the three major broadcasters, are losing viewers.Their media credibility has hit rock bottom, as seen in the ongoing general strike of the unions of KBS and MBC, calling for autonomy in news coverage and the resignation of its top management, who allegedly meddled in news reporting to pander to the previous two governments.

UZBEKISTAN: Uzbekistan moves to digital television with SES Video

Broadband TV News: State Unitary Enterprise “Centre of Radio Communication, Broadcasting and Television” (SUE CRRT) of the Republic of Uzbekistan will rely on SES Video for the upcoming launch of its first DTT multiplex.

AUSTRALIA: ABC cuts jeopardising safety of remote communities – study

The Guardian: Reduction of local news and station closures disastrous for people living outside Australia’s cities, researchers say.

AUSTRALIA: Media diversity and jobs under threat in Australia

IFJ: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins its affiliate, the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance (MEAA) in strongly criticizing proposed legislation that will change media ownership rules in Australia.

AUSTRALIA: Media shake-up as broadcasting laws pass parliament

SBS: The Turnbull government has successfully passed its media laws bill by 31 votes to 27 in the Senate after making concessions to Pauline Hanson’s One Nation and the Nick Xenophon Team.

AUSTRALIA: Mitch Fifield: legislating fairness and balance into ABC won’t change broadcaster

The Guardian: The communications minister, Mitch Fifield, has defended his decision to legislate that the ABC must be “fair and balanced”, saying it will not change anything about the public broadcaster’s existing editorial policies.

NEW ZEALAND: Broadcasting buried in policy parade

RNZ: At election time, political parties push policies on big ticket issues like tax, health and education to woo voters. Announcements on broadcasting or the media are often left to the last minute or overlooked entirely. Mediawatch rounds up what the various parties are offering this time round – if the issue is on their radar at all.

NEW ZEALAND: Māori, Pasifika to have stronger media presence, Labour announces

Pacific Media Centre: New Zealand’s Māori and Pasifika community will have a stronger presence in the country’s public media under a new policy announced by the Labour Party.

NEW ZEALAND: NZ and Canada renew digital media coproduction incentive

Scoop: NZ On Air and the Canada Media Fund (CMF) have announced the renewal of their partnership, now in its fourth year, to encourage the coproduction of digital media content between Canadian and New Zealand creators.

NEW ZEALAND: RNZ-New Zealand Election17 coverage moves to seven platforms

ABU: Radio New Zealand has been delivering election results to New Zealanders for decades – the first broadcast media organisation to do so. This month RNZ’s coverage moves to a new level – on seven media platforms including, for the first time, television.

Pacific: PFF wants forum organisers to realise media role

RNZ: A watchdog says the Pacific Islands Forum and future hosts of the annual leaders’ summit need to realise the role the media plays in society.

AUSTRIA: We were being slaughtered but we fought back to reestablish credibility: Austrian Public Broadcaster

Asia Radio Today: “There is an important conversation going on in social media and we are not listening,” Austria’s Patrick Swanson told the Media2020 conference this week.

FINLAND: Reports review Yle’s online local news (Report)

Nordicom: Public service companies’ news online cannot be proven to have any harmful effect on the commercial media market. This conclusion can be found in a Finnish report on a review of Yle’s regional online news activities in relation to the newspaper market.

FRANCE: France Télévisions faces call to make more savings

Digital TV Europe: France Télévisions and France’s other public broadcaster organisations could be forced to find significant cost savings after the French government demanded economies in the region of €80 million, according to a report in Le Monde.

FRANCE: French DTT to exit 700 MHz band

Advance Television: The French TV market is preparing for the withdrawal of DTT channels on the 700 MHz band from October 3rd.

FRANCE: Ministry of Culture confirms decrease in public broadcasting budget (French)

Le Monde: The breakdown between the different groups will be detailed at the end of the month when the draft budget for 2018 will be presented.

GERMANY: Fake news probably won’t affect the outcome of Germany’s election. Here’s why.

Poynter: Even though Germany is less than two weeks away from its federal election, Jacques Pezet isn’t worried. At least, not yet.

KOSOVO: Media freedom and journalists’ safety in Kosovo (Publication)

ECPMF: This report presents the findings of the research conducted within the regional project Western Balkan’s Regional Platform for advocating media freedom and journalists’ safety.

NORWAY: FM in Norway is dead, long live DAB

TVB Europe: Norway, the first country to switch off FM radio to move 100 per cent to DAB, has reported that the first region to have made the radical change, Nordland County, has said viewing figures have remained the same while advertising has risen.

POLAND: TVP financial problems deepen

Broadband TV News: The Polish public broadcaster TVP had a loss of nearly PLN29 million (€6.77 million) in the first seven months of this year.

POLAND: TVP inks video deal, secures Champions League rights

Broadband TV News: The Polish public broadcaster TVP has entered into a video distribution agreement with the national news agency PAP.

RUSSIA: RT, Sputnik and Russia’s New Theory of War

The New York Times Magazine: How the Kremlin built one of the most powerful information weapons of the 21st century — and why it may be impossible to stop.

SERBIA: Serbian Newspaper Owner Goes on Hunger Strike

Balkan InsightVukasin Obradovic, the founder of Vranjske novine and former head of the Serbian journalists’ association, went on hunger strike after being forced to close his newspaper after more than two decades.

SLOVENIA: Media business or (geo)politics behind foreign investments in the Slovenian media market

SEENPM: Slovenia’s small media market, which is highly concentrated in its TV segment and has repelled rather than attracted foreign investment in the past decade, has recently experienced two seemingly strategic investments by Hungarian and US companies.

SPAIN: The new Valencian public television will broadcast in the first quarter of 2018

El País: Unless anything unexpected happens, the new radio and Valencian television, À Punt , will start the broadcasting in the first quarter of 2018. Web, children’s programming and radio will all be launched before the end of 2017.

SPAIN: The PP uses its absolute majority in the Senate to favor the control of RTVE  (Spanish)

El País: The PP has used its absolute majority in the Senate to correct Wednesday the reform of RTVE that was agreed in Congress and thus favor the union of their votes and those of the PSOE control the election of the president of the corporation and its board members.

SPAIN: The RTVE Law passes its last step in the Congress on Thursday, which will decide if it accepts the changes of the PP in the Senate (Spanish)

La Vanguardia: Ciudadanos and Podemos alert of a change that would allow PP and PSOE to divide the corporation without considering the others

SPAIN: TSJC warns TV3 director of criminal charges if he collaborates with the referendum

El National: The High Court of Justice of Catalonia (TSJC) has notified Vicent Sanchis, the director of TV3 (Catalan public TV channel) that he may incur “possible liability, including criminal charges” if he collaborates with the preparation or organisation of the referendum on 1st October, in his capacity as the one with maximum responsibility for the Catalan broadcaster.

SWITZERLAND: Swiss public broadcaster SRG extends partnership with Mobiliar, indoor sports associations

Telecompaper: Swiss public broadcaster SRG has extended its partnership with the sports associations of basketball, handball, unihockey und volleyball, as well as with the sponsor Mobiliar. This way SRG guarantees country-wide coverage of championships and cup finals of all four big indoor sports on TV, radio and in online media.

SWITZERLAND: What’s the price of public broadcasting in Switzerland?

SwissInfo.ch: Parliament is continuing its debate of a people’s initiative which aims to scrap licence fees for the services of the public Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). At stake is the value of information in a direct democracy and an annual per capita fee of up to CHF451 ($471).

UK:  BBC chair calls for end to abuse of journalists – especially women

The Guardian: Politicians and social media companies must clamp down on the increasingly “explicit and aggressive” abuse suffered by BBC journalists, according to the chairman of the public broadcaster.

UK: Diversity of UK television industry revealed

Ofcom: Broadcasters need to improve the diversity of their employees, Ofcom said today, as a major study of diversity in television finds that women, ethnic-minority groups and disabled people are all under-represented in the industry.

UK: PBS America now on Amazon UK

Advanced Television: PBS America, the British TV channel from America’s Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), is launched PBS America On Demand as part of the Amazon Channels line-up in the UK.

UK: Where are all the Women Journalists in UK Newspapers?

EJO: National newspapers in the UK are mostly written by male journalists, even though women make up nearly half of the profession.

UKRAINE: Authorities block journalists as threats to national security

Index on Censorship: Journalists across Ukraine are being suppressed, deported and banned from the country, according to the Index on Censorship’s Mapping Media Freedom project.

UKRAINE: Canada calls on Kyiv to fully finance public broadcasting to guarantee its independence

Interfax Ukraine: The Canadian Embassy in Ukraine has urged the Ukrainian government to finance public broadcasting in full.

GENERAL: Asia-Pacific and European broadcasters meeting the challenges

ABU: The ABU and Radio Romania welcomed more than 150 delegates from 32 countries across Europe and Asia to this year’s Media2020 Dialogue in Sinaia, to discuss the challenges facing broadcasting during an era of great change.

BRAZIL: Brazilian network of communicators to discuss journalism from the periphery

Knight Centre for Journalism in the Americas: On Sept. 16 in São Paulo, the Rede de Jornalistas da Periferia (Network of Journalists of the Periphery) will hold Virada Comunicação 2017, an event to discuss and propose new approaches to journalism from the point of view of communicators and residents of the regions most disconnected from the centers of Brazil’s great cities.

CARIBBEAN: Association of Caribbean Media Workers launches post-hurricane media campaign

via Ifex: The Association of Caribbean MediaWorkers (ACM) has launched a campaign focused on the plight of journalists and other media workers in some Caribbean countries affected by Hurricane Irma.

CARIBBEAN: CBU President’s Message: Members in the Path of Hurricane Maria

CBU: As our region prepares for Hurricane Maria, the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU) offers its support to all of you likely to be affected.

MEXICO:  Public media and the budget of 2018

Sin Embargo: In every year of the administration of Enrique Peña Nieto there has been less money for the federal public media and an increase in the spending for government advertising and commercial broadcasting. In the 2018 election year, it will not be very different, but at least the budget proposal that was presented last week provides for some increase in resources for public radio and television.

PANAMA: Panama sets date for first phase of analogue switch-off

Rapid TV News: Panama’s Autoridad Nacional de los Servicios Públicos (ASEP) has confirmed the schedule for the first phase of its DTT deployment.

VENEZUELA: CIDH censures Venezuela over media closures

Rapid TV News: The Latin American human rights commission, the Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos (CIDH), has publicly condemned Venezuela for closing down over 50 media companies over the last year, including several TV stations.

VENEZUELA: From power cuts to powerful threats, Venezuela’s indigenous journalists face a series of challenges in their reporting

CPJ: Journalists in Venezuela regularly face harassment, intimidation, detention, and censorship, CPJ has found. Yet the dangers are greater for journalists from indigenous communities, or those working for small community media outlets who seldom have access to the basic protections available to those affiliated with major publications.

PALESTINE: Palestinians Imprison Journalists for Exposing Corruption

Gatestone Institute: The court verdict passed on Hajer Harb, and the ongoing punitive measures against Palestinian journalists in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, serve as yet another reminder that Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have no respect for freedom of expression and media freedoms.

SAUDI ARABIA: Snapchat blocks Al Jazeera in Saudi Arabia

Advanced Television: The social media platform reports that it was asked by the Saudi authorities to remove the Qatari-backed broadcaster’s Discover Publisher Channel because it violated local laws.

TURKEY: Cumhuriyet trial, the defendants remain in prison

OBC Transeuropa: The trial resumes in Istanbul for the employees of daily Cumhuriyet, accused of terrorism. Defendants remain behind bars at the request of the prosecution. Our correspondent’s account.

TURKEY: Show trials of journalists are a travesty of justice

Article 19

YEMEN: Arabic press review: Houthis ‘ban journalism’ in Yemen

Middle East Eye: Political and media sources in Yemen reported that Houthis banned journalists from working in the capital Sanaa and other areas under their control, according to the London-based newspaper, al-Quds al-Arabi. They also threatened to arrest all those who practise journalism.

GENERAL: Media in the Middle East: A new study shows how the Arab world gets and shares digital news

NiemanLab: Two-thirds of respondents in the countries studied said they get news from social media every day.

CANADA: CBC/Radio-Canada hosts Annual Public Meeting

CBC: No filters. A conversation about credibility, media and the future of public broadcasting.

CANADA: Funding public service media: time for a new approach

CBC: Hubert T. Lacroix, President and CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada, was invited to participate in two panels at the Public Broadcasters International (PBI) 2017 conference. The first one, “Financial system changes and the defence of public service media,” focused on the challenges of funding public broadcasters in a rapidly changing media landscape so that they stay relevant and independent.

CANADA: More digital than ever. And not slowing down

CBC/Radio-Canada: How CBC is adapting to a digital future.

US: CPB Awards More Emergency Grants to Public Media Stations for Hurricane Relief

CPB: These grants, like those provided to public media stations affected by Hurricane Harvey, will help stations address increased operating costs due to the extraordinary storm damage and allow them to continue to provide essential news and information to their communities.

US: For local newsrooms covering hurricanes Harvey and Irma, ‘the story is just beginning’


US: New Public Media Venture Group will exploit potential of ATSC 3.0

Current: Public Media Co. is assembling a Public Media Venture Group of stations to explore the mission and revenue potentials of ATSC 3.0, the upcoming broadcast protocol known as Next Generation TV.

US: PBS President Paula Kerger Talks Education, Fall Programs With Boise Audience

Idaho Public Television News: Paula Kerger, president and CEO of the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), visited Boise on September 14 to help Idaho Public Television thank its funding partners and introduce the fall lineup of PBS programs. She also announced the launch of the PBS Kids 24/7 channel, which is planned to begin broadcasting around-the-clock educational programming over the IdahoPTV airwaves in early 2018.

Broadcasters promoting tolerance

Asia Radio Today: “Not all changes in media are about technology, they can also be about geopolitics,” said France Medias Monde’s John Maguire, speaking at a Media2020 conference session on diversity and tolerance.

BuzzFeed’s strategy for getting content to do well on all platforms? Adaptation and a lot of A/B testing

Nieman Lab: Multiple versions of articles — with different headlines but also of different lengths and using different thumbnail art — are shown to BuzzFeed.com visitors until a winning combination emerges after a couple of hours.

Chatbots help newsrooms talk to readers one-on-one — and discover stories in their community


Children’s Screen Content in an Era of Forced Migration: Facilitating Arab-European Dialogue

PMA: This free pre-summit CGMS workshop aims to help European stakeholders better understand the information and entertainment needs of Arabic-speaking children, many of whom are struggling to make sense of the troubling and often chaotic environment they have witnessed.

Dragomir Discusses Challenges to Public Service Media at PBI Conference

CMDS: Organized by Radio Romania, Public Broadcasters International (PBI) held this week its annual conference in Sinaia, Romania, to discuss key trends and challenges for public broadcasters.

Facebook’s plan to expand Watch video platform puts broadcasters on notice

Deutsche Welle: Fear of Facebook has spread at the International Broadcaster Convention (IBC) in Amsterdam after the social network unveiled plans to expand the reach of its video offering in order to increase its advertising revenues.

Global journalist’s death toll rises – again

ECPMF: 2,294 journalists have been killed worldwide during the period 2000 – 2016, and the trend is increasing.

How to Verify Fake Photos and Videos by Confirming Time and Place

Media Shift: For carrying out verification of photographs and videos, the two most important pieces of information you can have are place and time.

PBI conference celebrates shared values

EBU: The annual meeting of Public Broadcasting International (PBI) has concluded that, while we may be very different as public service broadcasters, we hold many values in common.

Public broadcasting, more necessary than ever in the age of fake news

Radio Info: For the past decade or more, public service broadcasters have found it necessary to justify their existence in the face of increasing competition, new technology and attacks from the private sector. Now, in the age of fake news, the tide appears to be turning back in favour of public broadcasters.

Public media employees, this emergency fund has your back when disaster strikes


Public-service journalism program pitched in CJR lands funding

CJR: There’s widespread agreement in the news media that the crisis in journalism threatens democracy. But there’s some confusion about what exactly the crisis is, and therefore what the solutions need to be.

The audience is not wholly convinced by virtual reality journalism (Article)

Journalism Research News: There is still notable ambivalence towards virtual reality’s utility in journalism, Sarah Jones, currently of Birmingham City University, writes.

Ten Tips for Writing Reliable and Engaging Health Articles

EJO: Health journalism has a bad reputation. One day, something helps you lose weight, the next, it could make you fat. If you believe the headlines, nearly everything gives you cancer.Luckily, there is another way of doing health journalism.

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: Radio tower in San Francisco. Credits: Orin Zebest/Creative Commons