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

As the global Covid-19 pandemic continues and many countries enter a state of lockdown, 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 resources featuring recommended tools, advice and sources for journalists and the public alike. The resources can be found via the link below or in the ‘Tools’ section of our website.

The resource will be frequently updated to reflect the changing needs and evolving situation. If you have any recommendations, please let us know.

We also want to hear about your local public media coverage! Email us!

As the coronavirus pandemic worsens, public media are rapidly adapting to best cover the crisis on a local level while also providing for educational needs and vulnerable groups as isolation policies are introduced.

We want to hear from our members about what you are doing to best cover the crisis on a local level. Email us using the link below.

Coronavirus: Resources & best practices

Essential resources for sourcing and reporting news about the coronavirus pandemic

What we're listening to...

Robocalls, Rumors And Emails: Last-Minute Election Disinformation Floods Voters

NPR: Dirty tricks and disinformation have been used to intimidate and mislead voters for as long as there have been elections. But they have been especially pervasive this year as millions of Americans cast ballots in a chaotic and contentious election.

What we're reading...

Shining a Spotlight on Media Freedom? Media coverage of the Global Campaign for Media Freedom

City University of London & University of East Anglia: In our first project report, we analyse English-language, online news coverage and Twitter commentary about  media freedom. Specifically, we ask whether the Global Campaign for Media Freedom (GCMF) has succeeded in ‘shining a spotlight’ on media freedom in its first year of activities, from July 2019- July 2020.

Global Headlines

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

BURUNDI: Four Burundian journalists complete 12 months in arbitrary detention

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on Burundi’s new president to pardon four journalists who have been detained arbitrarily for the past year and who are victims of the country’s draconian curbs on the freedom to inform.

EGYPT: Al-Manassa editor Nora Younis on censorship in Egypt (Feature)

CPJ: This summer, Egyptian authorities raided Al-Manassa for the first time since the independent news website was established in 2016. 

EGYPT: Mahmoud Hussein completes 1400 days in Egypt prison 

IPI: The International Press Institute (IPI), a global network of editors, media executives and leading journalists for press freedom, today reiterated its demand for the release of IPI member and Al Jazeera journalist Mahmoud Hussein from Egyptian prison. 

GAMBIA: ‘Sexual harassment very prevalent in Gambian media’

The Point: Lamin Jahateh, programme manager, The Gambia Press Union, has said that sexual harassment and discrimination are very prevalent in The Gambian media.

GUINEA: Guinea: Four Radio Stations Temporarily Shut down, Website Suspended on Election Day

MFWA: Four local radio stations were forced to shut down temporarily and a news website was suspended for one month on election day in Guinea.

KENYA: Parliament to start 24-hour media station

KBC News: The National Assembly is mulling over starting a 24-hour media station to cover its activities.


MISA: The Lesotho government, through the Lesotho Communications Authority (LCA), has proposed new regulations that stipulate that individuals with more than 100 followers on social media platforms will be considered as internet broadcasters and may need to register with authorities.

MALAWI: State House blocks MBC reporters at Sanjika: Hope Chisanu removed as controller of VIP

Nyasa Times: State House on Saturday blocked two Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) reporters, George Mkandawire and Alepher Mushani from covering President Lazarus Chakwera’s engagement with the private sector at Sanjika Palace in Blantyre.

NIGERIA: #EndSARS: NBC imposes N3m sanction each on AIT, Channels, Arise TV

The Premium Times: The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has imposed N3 million sanction each on AIT, Channels and Arise News television stations, for alleged violation of broadcasting code in reporting the #EndSARS protests.

NIGERIA: Law enforcement and unidentified assailants attack Nigerian journalists and media offices during protests

CPJ: Nigerian authorities should conduct a swift and transparent investigation into recent attacks on journalists and media outlets and ensure that the press can cover ongoing protests safely, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.  

SOUTH AFRICA: Bemawu to file urgent application to force SABC to return to negotiating table

SABC News: Trade union Bemawu has now instructed its lawyers to proceed with an urgent application in the Labour Court to force the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) to return to the negotiating table.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC management promises to improve its planning systems

SABC News: The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) says it is working on improving its planning systems to ensure that the organisation is financially stable.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC wants Netflix & DStv to pay licence fees

Advanced Television: South Africa’s public broadcaster SABC, in a presentation to the nation’s parliament, said that it was time for broadcasters such as MultiChoice/DStv and Netflix to pay licences fees for their users who watch TV on computers and mobile phones.

SUDAN: Sudan: Security forces attack journalists and obstruct reporting on protests

IFJ: Security forces attacked journalists and prevented them from covering protests in Sudan’s capital Khartoum on 21 October. 

TANZANIA: Freedom Of Expression Environment Deteriorates As Tanzania Heads For Elections (Statement)

MISA: With just under a week to go before Tanzania’s elections on 28 October 2020, the government’s stranglehold over the media is once again in the limelight.

ZIMBABWE: ZBC ex-CEO trial kicks off

ZBC News: The trial of three former Zimbabwe Broadcasting Cooperation executives including former Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Mavhura kicked off in Harare this Monday.

CHINA & US: China hits US media with new rules in tit-for-tat retaliation

HKFP: After the US declared several more Chinese media outlets to be “foreign missions”, Beijing late Monday demanded that six US media groups report to the government about their staffing, finances and real estate. They included the LA Times, Newsweek and the American Broadcasting Corporation.

INDIA: AIR to expand pure DRM radio services

Asia Radio Today: After the disruption caused by the pandemic, All India Radio (AIR) decided not only to restart transmissions in pure digital mode but also to expand DRM MW digital Radio services.

INDIA: Stop harassment of journalists, drop sedition cases against them, global press bodies tell Modi

Scroll.in: The International Press Institute and Belgium-based International Federation of Journalists accused the BJP of using pandemic as an excuse to stifle criticism.

JAPAN: Editorial: NHK needs public trust before legislation to make TV receiving fee mandatory (Opinion)

The Mainchi: The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications has submitted a proposal to an expert committee that would create a legal requirement for people to pay public broadcaster NHK’s receiving fee.

KAZAKHSTAN: Kazakh police assault, injure journalist Saniya Toiken covering protests in Nur-Sultan

CPJ: Kazakh authorities should immediately and thoroughly investigate the assault on journalist Saniya Toiken, punish the perpetrators, and ensure that members of the press can work safely in Kazakhstan.

MALAYSIA: Malaysia urged to give fair and equal media access to Parliament (Statement)

Via IFEX: The Centre for Independent Journalism criticized the statement of the Parliament restricting the media outlets which can cover its proceedings. The list of accredited media also excludes online news portals that operate exclusively online.

NEPAL: Media houses asked to provide salary, facilities to working journalists

The Himalayan Times: The Federation of Nepali Journalists has demanded that all the media houses immediately release due payments, including regular remuneration and Dashain allowance to working journalists and employees.

PAKISTAN: Day-long ordeal ends: Geo News missing reporter returns home

The News International: Ali Imran Syed, senior Geo News reporter, who went missing on Friday evening in district east of Karachi, returned home almost after a day long-ordeal on Saturday evening.

PAKISTAN: Pakistan: State-owned Radio Pakistan sacks 749 media workers

IFJ: State-owned Radio Pakistan announced on October 20 the sacking of 749 contractual employees effective immediately. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) condemn the outrageous mass lay-off and urge intervention by Pakistan’s government to reverse the decision.

PHILIPPINES: ‘Government is afraid’: Attacks on media show PH govt’s fear of accountability, journalists say

ABS-CBN News: The government’s shutdown of the free TV broadcast of ABS-CBN, the cases filed against Rappler CEO Maria Ressa, and several attacks on the Philippine media in a short period of time show how afraid President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration is of accountability, veteran Filipino journalists said Friday.

SOUTH KOREA: KBS-ABU Co-produced CARE 10> New Beginning – People on the Red Earth (Press release – Korean)

KBS: The CARE series, an international co-production project jointly by KBS and Asia Pacific Broadcasting Federation (ABU), will be broadcast on Sunday, October 25th. 

THAILAND: Thailand: Court order to suspend online broadcaster revoked

IFJ: An attempt by Thailand’s Digital Economy Ministry and the Royal Thai Police to retract the license of online broadcaster Voice TV has been rejected by the Thai Criminal Court on October 21. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate the National Union of Journalists Thailand (NUJT ) condemn the Thai authorities’ attempt to censor Thailand’s media and welcome the response by the courts to defend media freedom.

THAILAND: Thai PBS allows producers to propose ideas to create programs from 23 – 25 November 2020 (Opportunity – Thai)

Thai PBS: The Public Broadcasting Service of Thailand (FTI) or Thai PBS provides the opportunity for producers and interested parties to create new ideas for entering the selection process in Project to receive the program Commissioning 2020 in  accordance with the main objective of the Organization to support and develop the capacity and creation of independent program producers.

THAILAND: Thai PBS hands over Thai PBS Learning Shelf to the Department of Corrections Aim to increase learning opportunities for inmates (Press release – Thai)

Thai PBS: On October 26, 2020 , Dr.Sudarat Disayawattana Chandrawattanakul Deputy Director of Public Media Strategy Public Broadcasting and Broadcasting Organization of Thailand (FTI) or Thai PBS delivered 30 sets of Thai PBS Learning Shelf 2020 to Mr. Thawatchai Chaiwat, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Corrections. 

AUSTRALIA: ABC cuts 229 jobs in response to government funding freeze

The Sydney Morning Herald: The ABC has cut 229 jobs from across its divisions as part of its recent round of redundancies and cost-saving measures.

AUSTRALIA: ABC Managing Director David Anderson makes the opening statement to Senate Environment and Communications Legislation Committee (Speech)

ABC Australia: ABC Managing Director David Anderson opening statement to Senate Environment and Communications Legislation Committee, 21 October 2020.

AUSTRALIA: Calls for an ABC-run social network to replace Facebook and Google are misguided. With what money? (Opinion)

Mumbrella: There’s been a suggestion for the ABC to set up its own social media site, should the ACCC bargaining code go ahead and Facebook stand by its threat to remove news from its platform. In this crossposting from The Conversation, Fiona R Martin explains why that’s not the solution.

AUSTRALIA: Don’t conscript your ABC to the culture wars (Opinion)

The Sydney Morning Herald: The ABC, I hear, has surrendered to government pressure, given up its independence and impartiality, and committed itself to delivering anti-climate change, anti-intellectual, right-wing populist propaganda instead of news.

AUSTRALIA: More Relevant to More Australians (Statement)

ABC Australia: ABC News is doing an incredible job in a difficult year. We’ve never had more Australians coming to us for trusted information and outstanding coverage.

AUSTRALIA: When the public side with the powerful over press freedom, we all lose (Opinion)

The Sydney Morning Herald: Late last Thursday, on the eve of the AFL grand final public holiday, Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services issued a statement likely to have a significant impact on how journalists report on the government’s handling of the state’s second wave of coronavirus.

FIJI: Nawaikula makes allegations against FBC 

FBC News: Opposition MP Niko Nawaikula has taken to Facebook posting false statements about the Auditor General’s report on the Fijian Broadcasting Corporation.

NEW ZEALAND: A new twist on fake news (Listen)

RNZ Mediawatch: News of a new golliwogs sales outlet here in New Zealand turned out to be a hoax designed to trick the media – which worked. But it was also designed to harass a journalist who lifts the lid on hoaxers, trolls and fake news.

NEW ZEALAND: Should we fear fake news in our politics? (Listen)

RNZ Mediawatch: Fears that foreign political consultants and fringe parties would turn Facebook followers and fake news into votes in the election proved unfounded. The major parties mostly ran a clean game online too. So is misinformation in political messages really something to worry about?

TOKELAU: Using information and culture to unite – Tokelau journalist

RNZ: As NZ marks Te vaiaho o te gagana Tokelau or Tokelau language week, Elena Pasilio, an up-and-coming journalist shares her journey as a story-teller.

AUSTRIA: New problems and some old ones: Austria’s media landscape under the pandemic 

IPI: Covid-19 heightened economic pressure on already struggling media outlets.

BELARUS: Belarus: Authorities designate Telegram channel NEXTA as “extremist” in further crackdown on independent media (Statement) 

Article 19: We, the undersigned organisations, strongly condemn the ruling by a Belarusian court to include the popular Telegram channel NEXTA in the list of “extremist” materials under Article 17.11 of the Code of Administrative Offences. The decision effectively penalises Belarusians for seeking to access independent news sources, branding those exercising their right to freedom of expression and information as ‘extremist’, and is part of a worsening crackdown on dissent.

BELARUS: RSF asks UN to condemn Belarus crackdown on journalists, curbs on press freedom 

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has formally asked the United Nations to condemn the unprecedented violent crackdown on journalists and censorship of news and information in Belarus since President Alexander Lukashenko’s disputed reelection.

BELGIUM: Karrewiet brings the American elections to a child’s size (Press Release – Dutch) 

VRT: Karrewiet, the Ketnet youth news bulletin, provides information in children’s size following the American elections. Karrewiet anchor Jelle Mels will travel to the swing state of Florida on October 29 to closely follow the elections.

BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA:  Media in BiH and dealing with the past: Patriotic journalism must not be an excuse for spreading hate speech

Association of BH Journalists: The judiciary in Bosnia and Herzegovina is burdened with numerous problems that media professionals often do not see, and also the representatives of judicial institutions do not listen to the problems that journalists encounter in their work… 

BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA: Research: The position and mechanisms of protection of journalists in the local media in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Association of BH Journalists: Journalists in the local media are facing increasing restrictions in the area of ​​freedom of expression and freedom of the media, as well as the lack of a systematic approach to combating pressure from governments, state institutions and other political and economic centers. 

BULGARIA: Media freedom core issue in resignation of Bulgarian National Radio head (Paywall) 

The Sofia Globe: At the core of the controversy around the resignation of Bulgarian National Radio director-general Andon Baltakov are the issues of media freedom and the quest for the independence of the country’s public broadcasters.

CZECH REPUBLIC: Czech Television is extending the broadcasting of the ČT3 program at least until the spring (Press Release – Czech)

Czech TV: In connection with the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, Czech Television is extending the broadcast of the ČT3 program, which has been helping the most endangered group of the population since March, the elderly, who are forced to stay at home. 

CROATIA: Readers’ comments under online media articles could be a thing of the past in Croatia 

The Dubrovnik Times: The Minister of Culture and Media, Nina Obuljen Koržinek, expects that the proposal for a new Law on Electronic Media will be presented at the Government session in two weeks. After that, the legal proposal will be sent to the Parliament.

DENMARK: DR extends programs under corona (Press Release – Danish)

DR: ‘TV-Avisen Morgen’, ‘Morgensang’ and ‘Lægens bord’ continue after the New Year due to the latest corona development.

ESTONIA: EKRE MP steps down from ERR board over social media post backlash

ERR News: Urmas Reitelmann, Conservative People’s Party of Estonia (EKRE) MP and the party’s representative on public broadcaster ERR’s supervisory board, is stepping down from his post following a furor over a late-night social media post attacking ETV presenters. 

FINLAND: Yle is starting extensive cooperation with the City of Tampere and the Tampere university community (Press Release – Finnish) 

Yle: Yle, the City of Tampere and the Tampere University Community have entered into agreements on a broad strategic partnership. The collaboration will build Tampere into a pioneer in participatory storytelling, media education and new media.

FRANCE: Radio France, always better connected to the French (Press Release – French)

Radio France: Presentation of Radio France’s digital strategy Wednesday October 14, 2020

FRANCE: The French battle for freedom of speech: ‘It’s all about the principle’ (Interview) 

Deutsche Welle: After the brutal murder of teacher Samuel Paty, France is once more debating its core values. “It’s all up to the individual,” says Romy Strassenburg, former editor-in-chief at Charlie Hebdo’s German edition.

GEORGIA: GPB publishes results of TV audience research 

Georgian Public Broadcaster: Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB) published results of the TV audience research. The research was carried out throughout the whole country by Sonar Company, which won in the tender.[…]The research showed that Public Broadcaster has the lowest distrust among other TV Companies.

GEORGIA: TI Georgia on Georgian Media Environment in 2016-20 

Civil: On October 22, Transparency International Georgia, a local watchdog, published a report on the Georgian media environment from 2016 Parliamentary Elections until the present, stating that compared to the 2012-16 period, the ruling Georgian Dream party’s approach toward critical media “has become tougher.”

GERMANY: ARD Retro starts on October 27, 2020 in the ARD media library (Press Release – German) 

ARD: For UNESCO World Audiovisual Heritage Day on October 27, 2020, the ARD broadcasters and the German Broadcasting Archive are putting thousands of videos relevant to contemporary history freely accessible online. 

GERMANY: ZDF cooperates with klicksafe: “App + on” brings online competence to schools (Press Release – German)

ZDF: With the EU initiative klicksafe, ZDF provides teaching materials based on the web magazine ” App + on “: The newly developed material package ” App + on – Safe, Critical and Fair on the Net ” is aimed at pupils from the fifth grade and up and comprises of ten learning units. The teaching units are based on ten selected videos from the existing ZDFtivi media educational offer “App + on”.

GREECE: The second digital transition for public and private television begins (Press Release – Greek) 

ERT: On Friday [November 6, 2020], the second digital transition, as foreseen by the updated Frequency Map prepared by the State, starts jointly by both terrestrial digital broadcasting providers, ERT and Digea. 

HUNGARY: EU investigating whether Hungarian state aid spending is undermining media freedom 

The Parliament Magazine: Press freedom watchdog warns that Hungarian Foreign Affairs Ministry has written to embassies instructing them to monitor Hungarian journalists.

ICELAND: RÚV’s interim financial statements (Press Release – Icelandic)

RÚV: The Group’s operating loss amounted to ISK 281 million before taxes, but 242 m.kr. after tax entry, compared to 112 m.kr. loss at the same time last year. The main reason for the increased loss is the impact of COVID-19, but changes are seen in the fall in revenue due to the sale of advertisements, the cost of programming due to the epidemic and disease control. 

IRELAND: RTÉ to seek 70 voluntary redundancies as ‘large costs’ beckon in 2021 

The Irish Times: RTÉ will seek 60-70 redundancies when it reopens its voluntary exit scheme in January, director-general Dee Forbes has told staff. The broadcaster will accept applications for redundancy from January 11th as part of a plan agreed with the Government to cut costs by €60 million between 2020 and 2023.

ITALY: RAI maintains TV audience leadership in Italy

Advanced Television: Italian public broadcaster RAI remained the most country’s watched broadcaster in June 2020, with a 34 per cent daily average audience share, despite a 0.8 per cent drop on the same month in 2019.

KOSOVO: AJK: The lack of a government spokesperson is making the work of journalists harder

Safe Journalists: The Association of Journalists of Kosovo (AJK), has received numerous concerns from our colleagues regarding the lack of a spokesperson in the Hoti Government. 

MALTA: Journalists’ institute says press questions being ‘censored’ once again

Times of Malta: TVM cut live press conference transmission before journalists’ questions

MONTENEGRO: Montenegro’s New Majority Urged to Prove Commitment to Media Freedom (Paywall)

Balkan Insight: Despite a pledge by parties poised to form a new government in Montenegro not to interfere in the work of the country’s public broadcaster, rows and recrimination at Radio-Television Montenegro, RTCG, are feeding into doubts among analysts.

NETHERLANDS: Dutch broadcaster removes logos from vehicles in face of hostility

Deutsche Welle: The Dutch Broadcast Foundation (NOS) is removing company logos from its vehicles in response to an increasing number of attacks on its staff. It’s a pattern repeating itself across Europe. 

NORWAY: Two international awards to NRK (Press release – Norweigan)

NRK: A number of NRK series have been nominated in the various categories for Prix Europa. On Tuesday it was clear that ‘22. July’ and  ‘Made in Norway’ are the winners of ‘Best European TV series’ and ‘Best European Radio series’ respectively.

POLAND: Poland’s government sets its sights on private media (Paywall)

The Financial Times: Critics of conservative-nationalist ruling camp say the targeting of foreign ownership is unjustified 

SERBIA: Serbia ‘Still Investigating’ Police Attacks on Journalists at Protests 

Balkan Insight: The Serbian Interior Ministry told the Council of Europe that it is still looking into attacks on journalists, some of them involving police officers, during protests that turned violent in July.

SPAIN:  RTVE, on the III Collective Agreement (Press Release – Spanish)

RTVE: The  negotiating committee of the III RTVE Collective Agreement , in its last meeting held yesterday, has incorporated into the text the observations that the  Ministry of Finance  had made, after having favorably reported the pre-agreement of the Agreement. 

SWITZERLAND: Swiss public broadcaster to offer new streaming platform Play Suisse on Swisscom blue TV 

Telecompaper: Swiss public broadcaster SRG SSR has signed an agreement with Swisscom to enable direct access to SRG’s new streaming platform, Play Suisse, on Swisscom’s blue TV. Swisscom will offer Play Suisse in its blue TV app store. Talks with other telecom and internet providers as well as cultural platform partners are ongoing.

UK: BBC puts fairness and parity at the centre of over 75s licence fee decision in Guernsey, Jersey, and the Isle of Man 

BBC Media Centre: The BBC Board has announced its decision to fund TV licences for the poorest, older pensioners in Guernsey, Jersey and the Isle of Man from 1 January 2021. The new schemes will bring parity with licence fee payers in the UK and is the fairest decision for all licence fee payers.

UKRAINE: “Molotov cocktail” was thrown into the editorial office of the publication in Odesa region (Ukrainian) 

NUJU: On the night of October 21, the editorial office of Alternativa.org was set on fire in Ovidiopol, Odesa Oblast. This is the second crime committed against local independent media in a week. 

ARGENTINA: Towards gender parity in the state media (Spanish)

Pagina 12: A bill that promotes equal participation in the State’s sound and television broadcasting services and that is promoted by Senator Norma Durango, has the approval of the Chamber of Senators. From a gender perspective, the initiative lays the foundations to rethink the social and political role of the discourse of the mass media.


Barbados Today: A vibrant democracy involves the access to and critique of that information. Sometimes that information can be complex, it may involve the information being simplified to encourage the average reader to digest and follow the trajectory of any information, because it is our right to know what elected or appointed officials are doing with the public purse and in the name of the public.

BRAZIL: Censorship and attacks on the press: freedom of expression in the era of Jair Bolsonaro (Spanish)

El Espectador: The international organization Reporters without Borders (RSF) published a report in which it accounts for the “organized and systematic nature of the attacks of the ‘Bolsonaro system’ on the media”. The organization registered at least 105 harassments against the press by the president and his allies during the third quarter of 2020.

COLOMBIA: Intimidation by the Prosecutor’s Office warned after censorship in public media (Spanish)

France24: International standards protect officials who leak information to report irregularities in the State. But in Colombia, the Prosecutor’s Office is preparing to charge a journalist who denounced a case of censorship in ‘RTVC’, the Public Media System, and ordered a “judicial inspection” at the Foundation for Press Freedom.

COLOMBIA: Jonathan Bock, New Executive Director of FLIP (Spanish) 

FLIP: Fernando Ramírez and Vivian Newman, president and vice president of the Board of Directors of the Foundation for Press Freedom, are pleased to share with you the appointment of Jonathan Bock Ruiz as the new executive director of FLIP. We also congratulate Pedro Vaca, who leaves his position as director to assume the Office of the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression.

COLOMBIA: Lights in the Colombian audiovisual industry! (Spanish)

Infobae: RTVC provided $ 1.3 billion for investment RTVC announced the plan of the Public Media System to give a lifeline to the audiovisual industry, one of the most affected by the crisis unleashed by the pandemic.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Abinader: Dominican Republic is on the side of freedom of the press and democracy

Dominican Today: President Luis Abinader declared yesterday, during the signing of the Chapultepec and Salta Declarations, that independent journalism constitutes “a shield to protect democracy and all freedoms,” emphasizing that freedom of the press is essential in democratic systems, as is the separation of powers, sovereign justice and freedom of association.

EL SALVADOR: Draft comprehensive law for journalists (Spanish)

APES: It is important that the State, the owners of the private or  social media and the professional associations of journalism, achieve the establishment of  synergies that allow them to generate an environment where there are no professional, political, economic, labor pressures  or that attempt against their physical, work or family integrity.

EL SALVADOR: Public media: missed opportunity (Spanish – Opinion) 

El Salvador: It is not that “our voice” is heard today, as it was promoted, or that a government news program is automatically bad. The opportunity has been lost for there to be public media, which, as UNESCO argues, apply pluralism, diversity, have editorial independence, appropriate funding, are accountable and transparent.

GUATEMALA: IAPA warns of “intransigence” of the Government of Guatemala in the face of criticism (Spanish) 

Prensa Libre: The Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) assured this Wednesday, October 21, that the Government of Guatemala has demonstrated during 2020 “intransigence” in the face of criticism and also “lack of response to requests for information.”

HAITI: In Haiti, journalists are attacked and threatened, denounces the IAPA

Al Khaleej Today: The Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) stated on Tuesday that threats against journalists have been constant over the last year in Haiti, and that physical attacks on reporters continue, such as the one suffered by Georges Allen at the hands of National Police agents.

MEXICO: Threat to Mexico’s mechanism for protecting journalists

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is concerned about a threat to funding for the protection of journalists in Mexico, which continues to be one of the world’s deadliest countries for media personnel. This threat to future funding could put many journalists in danger.

TRINIDAD: Danger Between Headline and Bottom line (Opinion) 

Trinidad Express: The financial health of the media is the responsibility of its managers, but its institutional health is the business of us all. Both are in trouble and although the economic pain falls most directly on media employees and shareholders, the debilitating impact on the institution is a matter for national discussion and intervention. Our democracy demands it. 

VENEZUELA: Venezuelan intelligence services raid Correo del Caroní newspaper, detain employees

CPJ: On October 20, at about 9 a.m., agents from the Bolivarian Intelligence Service raided the headquarters of Correo del Caroní, an independent newspaper in the southern city of Puerto Ordaz, confiscated an editorial computer and documents, and barred the paper’s lawyer from the scene, according to media reports and a report by Correo del Caroní.

REGIONAL: Legal restrictions harm freedom of the press and expression, underlines IAPA resolution (Statement)

IAPA: The Inter American Press Association (IAPA) expressed concern about bills and decrees issued under the argument of sanctioning the dissemination of fake news in countries such as Chile, Colombia, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and Argentina, which cut off freedom of speech and the press.

IRAQ: Iraq authorities denounced for failure to protect media 

Al Jazeera: Criticism follows raids last year on at least three news outlets by unidentified armed men and the closing down of eight television and four radio stations.

TURKEY: Turkish courts pursue trials, asset seizures in multiple cases against journalists 

CPJ: Turkey must stop harassing journalists and prosecuting them on trumped up charges, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. 

REGIONAL: For Arab journalists, straightjacket tightens on press freedom

Los Angeles Times: They once knew which lines not to cross. But Arab journalists say the lines are expanding.  

CANADA: Canada’s newspaper publishers call for a new regulatory regime to safeguard trusted journalism

Toronto Star: Canada’s newspaper publishers say the “free ride” for Google and Facebook must stop.

CANADA: Canadians turn to CBC/Radio-Canada during the pandemic

CBC/Radio-Canada: Here are infographics highlighting CBC/Radio-Canada’s performance during the COVID-19 crisis.

CANADA: CBC Inuktitut language podcast Inuit Unikkaangit reunites Inuit with their stories

CBC News: Host and archivist Mary Powder replays them for the descendants of the original storytellers

CANADA: DIAS: We need a Canadian model to save Canadian journalism (Opinion)

Lakeshore Advance: Just when Canadians need strong news outlets to guide them through the pandemic’s second wave, those same outlets are facing extinction. The sharp revenue drop resulting from COVID-19 comes after years of Google and Facebook, cornering the market on consumer data and digital advertising, bleeding much-needed revenue away from newspapers, magazines and TV and radio.

CANADA: Incorrect reporting about CBC/Radio-Canada funding

CBC/Radio-Canada: Over the past several days, a number of Internet sites including Blacklock’s Reporter, the Post Millennial, Rebel Media, and True North, have been claiming, “CBC-TV Gets A Covid Bailout” and “Trudeau Liberals give failing CBC-TV bailout”. The reports have been amplified on social media. These claims are incorrect. Neither CBC TV nor CBC/Radio-Canada, has received additional funding from the Government.

CANADA: Sustaining journalism for Canadians

CBC/Radio-Canada: CBC/Radio-Canada welcomes today’s release of a new report by News Media Canada, Levelling the Digital Playing Field. The report clearly identifies the threat to Canadian media posed by Google and Facebook, which together capture over 75% of digital advertising in Canada, allowing them to “dictate unfair terms to publishers on the use of their content.” The report also highlights a solution — the Australian approach to compensation for news content. 

CANADA & BOTSWANA: Canada and Botswana to co-host 2nd media freedom global conference

RCI: Canada and Botswana are joining forces to co-host the second edition of Global Conference for Media Freedom, Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne announced Monday. The online conference is expected to take place on Nov. 16 and will bring together representatives of traditional and digital media, civil society and various governments, Champagne said.

US: 24 global media, news & journalist organizations call on the US government to drop plans to shorten visa length for foreign journalists (Statement)

EBU: The EBU has brought together 24 organizations from across the globe to submit a statement to the US government in response to proposed changes to the I visa program that will impact on foreign journalists.

US: CNN public editor: television journalism will remain broken post-Trump (Opinion)

CJR: IN 2016, TELEVISION NETWORKS CLAIMED IGNORANCE about how their imbalanced and overly simplistic coverage, which essentially treated Donald Trump as the star of a reality show, influenced the presidential election… 

US: Conspiracy theories grow in the U.S., creating threats to journalist safety

CPJ: On the eve of the 2020 U.S. presidential election, conspiracy theories have abounded online amid the global pandemic and a polarized political climate. Journalists covering nearly every beat grapple with misinformation, which is false but may be spread by mistake, as well as disinformation, when falsehoods are shared intentionally.  

US: Foreign journalists in the United States aren’t the enemy (Paywall – Opinion)

Washington Post: If implemented as planned, these changes will have a devastating impact on global press freedom. 

US: How the press covered the last four years of Trump

CJR: In November 2017, the International Center for Journalists gave Fox News’s Chris Wallace an award for excellence in journalism. In his acceptance speech, he noted that President Trump’s attacks on the media threaten democracy, but then pivoted to scold his peers…

US: The Sacramento Bee wants to tie metrics to pay. Its guild is not having it

Poynter Institute: The brewing battle between a local newsroom, its hedge fund owner and its guild hit Twitter last week and managed to hold its own against the story of a masturbating legal analyst, foreign threats to the U.S. election and the cancellation of actor Chris Pratt.

US: To truly reflect diversity, PBS must end its overreliance on Ken Burns as ‘America’s Storyteller’ (Paywall – Opinion)

Current: It’s time to rethink PBS’ commitments to one man’s lens on American history and culture, writes filmmaker Grace Lee.

US: Trump admin dismantles ‘firewall’ for editorial independence at U.S.-funded outlets 

NBC News: A senior U.S. official appointed by President Donald Trump has scrapped a federal regulation designed to protect the editorial independence of Voice of America and other U.S.-funded media outlets, amid accusations he is undermining the journalistic credibility of the broadcasters.

Communications in the coronavirus crisis: lessons for the second wave

Reuters Institute: The UK has suffered through one of the worst coronavirus epidemics in the world, with more than 650,000 confirmed cases by mid-October, over 43,000 casualties across the country, and disadvantaged, marginalised, and vulnerable communities particularly hard hit…

J-Talks Live explores Media in Crisis: Can Journalism Survive – and Thrive – in this Year of Challenge? (Resource)

PR Newswire: In a year of unprecedented challenges, the Canadian Journalism Foundation’s (CJF) next J-Talks Live virtual event will explore what it will take for journalism to survive in this new reality. The free webcast takes place on Thursday, October 29 at 1 p.m. EDT.

Leading Resilience: A Guide for Editors and News Managers on Working with Freelancers Exposed to Trauma (Resource)

Dart Center: A collaboration between ACOS Alliance and Dart Centre Asia Pacific, this guide is designed to help editors and managers understand and support their teams.

Rush to pass ‘fake news’ laws during Covid-19 intensifying global media freedom challenges

IPI: 17 states passed some form of regulation targeting disinformation during pandemic, handing autocrats new censorship tools.  

Time to take action against SLAPPs 

Via ECPMF: Free speech is a cherished right in Europe. But in some countries, certain rich and powerful people use specious lawsuits to censor, harass and ultimately suppress critics. 

Young Journalist finalists.

Thomson Foundation: In a year we will never forget, we announce the 2020 Thomson Foundation.

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: SBS Newsroom