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.

DRC: DR Congo internet restored after 20-day suspension over elections

Aljazeera: DR Congo government officials shut off internet and SMS services nationwide to prevent election result ‘chaos’.

GHANA: Ahmed Hussein-Suale: Ghana journalist shot dead

BBC News: A Ghanaian undercover journalist has been shot dead while driving home, after a politician called for retribution against him.

GHANA: Ahmed Suale’s Murder and 3 Critical Issues about Safety of Journalists in Ghana

MFWA: The incident has attracted local, regional and international attention and condemnation. All actors including the UN have called on the Ghanaian authorities to promptly and thoroughly investigate the matter to bring the perpetrators to book.

IVORY COAST: Private competition gathers pace in Cote d’Ivoire with the forthcoming launch of a national Islamic TV station

Balancing Act: Cote d’Ivoire is both opening up its broadcasting space and implementing its digital transition. However, the speed of both developments has been rather slow.

KENYA: Kenya attack: ‘Our deaths are displayed for consumption’

BBC News: The attack wasn’t over when the picture of the dead men slumped over the tables in the Nairobi restaurant where they had been having lunch was published.

MAURITANIA: Repressive Laws Restrict Peaceful Speech

HRW: Urgent Need for Legislative Reform.

NAMIBIA: 40 journalists lose jobs since 2016

The Namibian: Close to 40 journalists lost their jobs over the past three years as local media houses restructured in the face of dwindling advertising and the onslaught from the internet.

SOUTH AFRICA: Free State Digital Migration Date Extended To February

Broadcast Media Africa: South Africa’s Department of Communications (DOC) has moved the deadline for switching over from analogue to digital terrestrial television (DTT) in the Free State to the end of February. The initial deadline was 31 December 2018.

SOUTH AFRICA: Job cuts at the SABC suspended

The Citizen: The broadcaster claims it had communicated with staff and unions at the end of last year.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC refutes reports on retrenchments

SABC News: The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has refuted reports that its Board has suspended the retrenchment process. The broadcaster was responding to an article that appeared in a daily newspaper on Monday morning.

SUDAN: Sudan issues arrest warrants against 38 reporters amid crackdown

Aljazeera: State prosecutor says arrest warrants based on charges such as ‘incitement’ and ‘dissemination of false news’.

SUDAN: Sudan responds to anti-Bashir coverage with censorship and arrests

CPJ: While surrounded by police officers wielding weapons and shouting at them to remain glued to the floor of the police station they had been taken to, the journalists wrote about how they were arrested for protesting about widespread censorship outside Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) headquarters.

TANZANIA: Magufuli has steadily tightened the noose on media freedom. Here’s how

The Conversation: How free is the press in Tanzania – is it less free now than in other periods in its history?

UGANDA: Ugandan parliament orders study into impact of social media tax

Telecompaper: Ugandan Parliament’s committee on Information and Communication Technology has ordered the ICT ministry to conduct an assessment on the impact of the social media tax introduced by  the government at the beginning of the 2018/19 financial year.

ZIMBABWE: Internet Shutdown in Zimbabwe: A Most Dangerous Precedent

CMDS: Faced with violent demonstrations, the government of Zimbabwe chose to cut off the internet. That was by far the worst option in a country claiming to be “open for business.

ZIMBABWE: ‘Total internet shutdown’ in Zimbabwe: provider

SABC News: Zimbabwe imposed a “total shutdown” of the internet on Friday, a major provider told customers, and after protests early this week triggered a ruthless security crackdown.

GENERAL: First human rights TV channel vows to ‘give a voice to voiceless’

Thomson Reuters Foundation: Topics will include refugees, press freedom and the incarceration of journalists, extremism, women’s rights, LGBT+ issues and the plight of the world’s stateless people.

CHINA: Editor’s Pick: Best Investigative Stories from Mainland China in 2018

GIJN: Despite virtually all aspects of the media being tightly controlled by China’s party-state, determined Chinese journalists and writers are still finding opportunities to report facts and expose wrongs.

INDIA: 17 sexual harassment cases pending with AIR: NCW

Asia Radio Today: However, the representatives of AIR said that due action has been taken in all such cases.

INDIA: Doordarshan plans to have its own OTT platform

India Today: After Star Plus, Zee TV, Sony TV and Colors, now Doordarshan plans to venture into the digital world.

INDIA: India’s Doordarshan sets new guidelines

Advanced Television: India’s public broadcaster, Prasar Bharati is restructuring its guidelines for the allocation and sale of broadcasting slots on its Doordarshan DTH ‘Free Dish’ platform. The system has an estimated 30 million viewing homes.

JAPAN: NHK World – Japan launches on Roku platform

Broadband TV News: NHK World, Japan’s global 24-Hour, English-language television channel, is joining streaming platform Roku.

JAPAN: NHK must do more to promote the streamlining of its operations (Opinion)

The Japan News: It is essential for NHK to exercise a certain degree of restraint as a public broadcaster, while providing high-quality programs. A thorough streamlining of its business is indispensable.

MALDIVES:  Act on Human Rights Pledges

HRW: President Solih Should Reverse Abuses of Past Government.

PAKISTAN: President advises media to stop relying on govt for advertisement

Dawn: President Dr Arif Alvi on Friday suggested that the media industry should create its own revenue streams instead of depending on the advertisements given by the government, Radio Pakistan reported.

TAIWAN: Taiwan steps up probe into surveillance by pro-China media on island

Reuters: Taiwan will step up its investigation of pro-Beijing newspapers accused by politicians on the self-ruled island of spreading fake news and surveillance activities that infringe national security, a security official said on Friday.

GENERAL: Registration is now open for the 5th Edition of the ABU Media Summit on Climate Action and Disaster Preparedness


AUSTRALIA: Facebook yet to decide which political advertising rules it will roll out in Australia for the federal election

ABC: Facebook will wait until Australia’s federal election date is revealed to decide which, if any, of its planned political advertising restrictions it will roll out in a bid to reduce potential interference.

AUSTRALIA: Instagram spreads political misinformation and Australian elections are vulnerable


FIJI: Is Fiji’s Online Safety Act a ‘Trojan Horse’ for online censorship?

Global Voices: Fiji’s Online Safety Act took effect this month amid concern that it will be used to censor the Internet.

NEW ZEALAND: Go South: The NZ travel show with no narration or score

Noted: With Go South, New Zealand jumps on the captivating, if time-consuming, bandwagon of televising cross-country journeys.

NEW ZEALAND: Talk radio battle, Stuff break-up & NZME paywall (Audio)

RNZ: Media commentator Gavin Ellis looks at the issues facing media here and internationally. On the homefront, a battle royal in talk radio, the break-up of Stuff and a slow start to the NZME paywall.

SAMOA: Samoa journalists offer to help police understand role

RNZ: The Journalists Association of Samoa, or JAWS, is offering its services to police trainers, after a photojournalist was stopped doing his job last month.

TIMOR-LESTE: Sacked head of Timor-Leste state broadcaster claims ‘political axe’

Asia Pacific Report: The ousted president of Timor-Leste’s public television network says he has been sacked for political reasons.

ALBANIA: Albania: Government must retract proposed laws on online media

IFJ: A group of organisations for the protection of human rights, freedom of information and journalists associations demand from the Prime Minister to drop proposals on regulation of online media.

CROATIA: Croatia, a thousand lawsuits against journalists

OBC: There are over a thousand ongoing trials against journalists or Croatian media, and the list is not complete. The complaint of the Association of Croatian Journalists

FRANCE: France Télévisions teams up with TDF for targeted advertising over DTT

Digital Tv Europe: France Télévisions’ advertising arm, France TV Publicité, has teamed up with transmission services provider TDF to introduce targeted advertising using the HbbTV platform on the country’s digital-terrestrial TV network.

FRANCE: A new president for the CSA (French)

La Croix: Chosen by the head of state, Roch-Olivier Maistre will succeed Olivier Schrameck as president of the Higher Audiovisual Council (CSA)

FRANCE: Franck Riester: putting overseas territories back in the center of public broadcasting (French)

CB News: On Thursday, the Minister of Culture Franck Riester reassured senators on the visibility of overseas territories on public television, after the abolition of France O DTT scheduled for 2020.

GERMANY: Media usage in Germany rises in 2018

Broadband TV News: Germans are consuming an increasing amount of audio and audio-visual media content.

GREECE: OSCE Media Freedom Representative strongly condemns attacks on journalists by extremists in Greece, urges swift and thorough investigation

OSCE: The OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Harlem Désir, condemned the attacks yesterday on reporters and photojournalists by extremist groups in Athens.

GREENLAND: Greenland: Highest media consumption in the Nordic region

Nordicom: In Greenland, the population spends far more time on TV and radio than in the rest of the Nordic region. But Internet use is lagging behind. This is according to a unique research report on the media in Greenland.

POLAND: Polish Radio in training team-up with European Broadcasting Union

Radio Poland: Public broadcaster Polish Radio will set up a regional training hub for journalists from across Central and Eastern Europe under an agreement it signed with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) in Warsaw on Thursday.

SERBIA: Serbian journalists under pressure as protests swell

ECPMF: Thousands of Serbs have been out on the streets again for the seventh Saturday running. They are protesting against propaganda, pressure on independent journalists and President Aleksandar Vucic’s strongman style of government.

SPAIN: RTVE at decisive moments: the democratization and consolidation of public service media (Spanish – Opinion)

EL PAÍS: The mediation of a Committee of Experts to designate the presidency of RTVE implies the respect of the uncontested parliamentary sovereignty and sets out the best ones for that function on the basis of merit and skills.

SPAIN: RTVE launches ‘The great adventure of the Lunnis’, its first augmented reality app for children (Spanish)

RTVE: The app contains exclusive videos of the film that can be unlocked weekly to pass the different missions.

SPAIN: TVE will double its broadcast hours in Catalan by the end of the year, to give a voice to the citizens of Catalonia (Spanish)

RTVE: The ambitious project foresees an increase of the current 20.5 hours, doubling them in a year and reaching 80 in two years.

SWITZERLAND: RTS sets up a “data journalism” unit (French)

LMFP: Unveiling the story behind the mass of data available on a daily basis is the goal of data journalism. Reorganized last October and based in Geneva, the “data innovation” unit is a hub of expertise in the field within Radio Television Switzerland (RTS).

SWITZERLAND: ‘Swissflix’: Switzerland plans own Netflix

Broadband Tv News: The Swiss Federal Office of Culture (BAK) wants to set up a streaming platform for Swiss films.

UK: BBC criticised for sticking with football over PM’s Brexit speech

The Guardian: Ex-news chief says Theresa May’s address to nation should have been shown on BBC One.

UK: BBC deputy director-general to step down

Digital TV Europe: The BBC’s deputy director-general, Anne Bulford, is due to leave the corporation in spring.

UK: Brexit: BBC domestic channels to lose international distribution

Broadband TV News: In case of a ‘no-deal-Brexit’ the BBC is set to lose the international distribution of its domestic channels in Ireland, The Netherlands and Belgium.

UK: New era for England: BBC announces major changes to services across the country

BBC: The BBC will “reinvent and refresh” its offer in England – including BBC local radio and regional TV news – to ensure it is providing the best possible services to all audiences across the country.

UKRAINE: How to finance the Ukrainian Public Broadcaster?

Council of Europe: A presentation of the expert report of the Council of Europe on Ukrainian legislation concerning current and possible alternative models of financing of the Public broadcaster will be held in Strasbourg on 24 January 2019.

GENERAL:  IHS: Euro broadcasters must collaborate to level the digital ad playing field

Rapid Tv News: To mount a stand against online behemoths as advertising revenues across Western Europe continue a gradual shift toward digital at the expense of TV-based outlays, IHS Markit has noted that that broadcasters are increasingly revising their business strategies.

BRAZIL: CNN Brasil is born: businessman and journalist license brand of global TV network and launch channel later this year

Knight Center: The CNN news network licensed its brand for operation in Brazil starting the second half of 2019. The channel CNN Brasil will be managed by a new media company, according to an announcement made via Twitter.

BRAZIL: Fake News Is Poisoning Brazilian Politics. WhatsApp Can Stop It (Opinion)

The New York Times: WhatsApp, the Facebook-owned messaging app, is one of the main tools that Brazilians use to keep in touch with friends and family, and do business. Increasingly, it is also a part of politics.

BRAZIL: Lessons learned from fact-checking the Brazilian presidential election

IJNet: The unprecedented scale and speed of fabricated content designed to influence the 2018 elections across social media, combined with the largely unregulated social media landscape, made the task of fact-checking more daunting.

GUYANA: “Fact-checking is important”, President tells local media fraternity…

NCN Guyana: Local media practitioners have been urged to embrace fact-checking and self-regulation on issues of public interest while fostering respect for social cohesion.

MEXICO: The first journalist killed in 2019 (Spanish)

IFJ: This is the journalist Rafael Murúa Manríquez, who was murdered on January 20 in the municipality of Mulegé, where he lived and developed the journalistic exercise.

MEXICO: There will be no censorship in the state’s public media, promises AMLO (Spanish)

El Economista: Andrés Manuel López Obrador made it clear that there will be no censorship in the state’s public media. The aim is for them to work in a coordinated manner for better and efficient communication.

NICARAGUA: Independent journalists suffer a difficult situation in Nicaragua (Spanish)

La Prensa: There are estimates that at least some 55 independent journalists would have left the country in the context of the socio-political crisis. Legal advisor of the CPDH does not rule out that more Nicaraguan journalists opt for exile.

NICARAGUA: Nicaraguan journalist flees to Costa Rica after police raid newsroom

The Guardian: Carlos Fernando Chamorro goes into exile citing President Ortega’s media crackdown

PUERTO RICO: Oversight board suggests privatizing Puerto Rico pubcaster (Paywall)

Current: An oversight board tasked with assisting Puerto Rico’s government with managing its finances is recommending transferring ownership of the Puerto Rico Public Broadcasting Corporation from the commonwealth to a private nonprofit.

GENERAL: Criminalisation of journalism: Some weapons can silence the media without using bullets

IFEX: Exorbitant fines, jail sentences or the closure of media outlets… These are some of the outcomes of legal instruments used against journalism in Latin America and the Caribbean today.

BAHRAIN: Unabated Repression

HRW: Free Speech and Association, Dissidents Under Attack.

IRAN: Journalist Marziyeh Hashem mistreated in US prison, Iran state TV’s English channel says

ABC News: Iran has called for the immediate release of an American-born journalist arrested in the United States while working for Iran’s English-language state television, accusing Washington of mistreating her in jail as a black Muslim woman.

JORDAN: Jordanian journalist imprisoned over article on private hospital

CPJ: The Committee to Protect Journalists today [17 January] condemned the imprisonment of Nidal Salameh, a journalist for the website Gerasa News, who was convicted of violating Jordan’s Press and Publications Law and the Cybercrime Law.

TURKEY: Turkey deports Dutch journalist without explanation

EFJ: On 17 January 2019, the journalist Ans Boersma, Turkey correspondent for the Dutch financial paper Het Financieele Dagblad, was deported from Istanbul and sent back to Amsterdam.

TURKEY: Turkey leads the world in jailed journalists

The Economist: Just five countries account for 70% of all reporters in prison.

TURKEY: TRT relaunches Arabic TV channel

AIB: The launch of TRT Arabi appears to be part of a modernisation strategy across TRT networks, with the new TRT international logo – first seen on TRT WORLD – being used on Arabi, Haber [News], Turk, Kurdi, Spor, and Avaz, and TRT’s main national channel, TRT1

CANADA: CBC/Radio-Canada announces the appointment of Daniel Boudreau as Executive Vice-President, Media Technology and Infrastructure Services

CBC/Radio-Canada: Today [21 Jan], Catherine Tait, President and CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada, announced the appointment of Daniel Boudreau as Executive Vice-President, Media Technology and Infrastructure Services.

CANADA: The RCI Mobile apps: bringing Canada to the world

CBC/Radio-Canada: RCI recently developed a mobile app to reach even more people around the globe. We spoke to Soleïman Mellali, RCI’s Editor in Chief, for details.

CANADA: Three takeaways from CBC’s winter media day (Paywall)

Media in Canada: Speakers Jack Myers and Aidan McCullen talked trust, future-proofing and diversity.

US: Authenticity and the Journalism of Networks

Nieman Reports: Trust in the federal government is at a historic low, while trust in Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders among supporters is near or above 80%. What can journalists learn from this moment?

US: NPR Has Turned ‘Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me’ Into a Game for Smart Speakers

Variety: NPR has turned its popular “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!” news quiz show into an interactive game for smart speakers: Owners of speakers powered by Google’s Assistant or Amazon Alexa will be able to play along to questions about the news of the week.

US: PBS will move headquarters to smaller space nearby (Paywall)

Current: PBS has signed a long-term lease on a new headquarters less than a mile from its current location in Arlington, Va., and will move in summer 2020.

City Bureau empowers citizens and bolsters local reporting with new tools

Journalism.co.uk: ‘Documenters’ offers reporting training and then pays individuals to put those tools into practice, thanks to the City Scrapers tech platform

CPJ Safety Advisory: Sophisticated phishing attacks mimic 2FA

CPJ: The cybersecurity research group CERTFA has reported an increase in sophisticated phishing attacks against journalists and human rights defenders. These attacks, which are global, have also targeted individuals who use more robust email providers or two-step verification (2FA) for their email and social media accounts.

Decrying Fake News, Governments Jail Journalists

CODA Story: President Trump turned “fake news” into a rhetorical cudgel. The world’s authoritarians have turned it into a crackdown on free speech.

Does journalism have a future? (Opinion)

The New Yorker: In an era of social media and fake news, journalists who have survived the print plunge have new foes to face.

Exclusive: Facebook brings stricter ads rules to countries with big 2019 votes

Reuters: Facebook Inc told Reuters on Tuesday that it would extend some of its political advertising rules and tools for curbing election interference to India, Nigeria, Ukraine and the European Union before significant votes in the next few months.

Facebook should treat the cause, not the symptoms, of journalism’s plight

CJR: At some point over the past year, anyone connected with journalism, its present woes, or concerns over its future probably found themselves in a room with a Facebook executive.

Hashtag Our Stories is using Snapchat lenses to turn citizens into more effective storytellers

Journalism.co.uk: The mobile journalism network is creating digital tools to help more citizen journalists tell local stories for global audiences

No, tech companies shouldn’t fund journalism

CJR: Yesterday, Facebook announced it would spend $300 million over three years on journalistic content, partnerships, and programs. The announcement commits the social network to match the funding rival tech giant Google said it would spend on such programs—but more importantly increases the already-dangerous co-dependency between big tech and newsrooms.

Tackling climate change: Does the media have a campaigning role? (Report)

RISJ: How can journalists engage readers with the issue of climate change while pushing for positive action in how we treat the planet?

Why Are so Many Humanitarian Crises Under-reported?

IPS: The research makes clear that humanitarian journalism is itself in crisis.

Why Do People Fall for Fake News? (Opinion)

The New York Times: Are they blinded by their political passions? Or are they just intellectually lazy?

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.

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