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...

Who cares about local news?

The Media Show | BBC: As job cuts are announced by Reach, the UK’s largest regional newspaper publisher, Amol Rajan looks at initiatives to fund local journalism. Also in the programme, is TikTok the new Huawei?

What we're watching...

Dragomir on Media Capture and Its Contexts

CMDS: CMDS Director Marius Dragomir and Minna Aslama Horowitz, Researcher at the University of Helsinki presented their research project about media capture, aimed at developing a comparative framework for public service media, at the IAMCR Online 2020 conference.

Global Headlines

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

BENIN: Benin regulator orders “unauthorized” media outlets to close

RSF: Benin’s media regulator, the High Authority for Broadcasting and Communication (HAAC), has ordered the immediate closure of all “unauthorized” online media outlets, in what Reporters Without Borders (RSF) fears is a new way of censoring dissident media.

BURUNDI: How Burundi’s independent press lost its freedom

The Conversation: The general and presidential elections of May 2020, followed by the death of President Pierre Nkurunziza, put the international media spotlight on Burundi. The country is now facing one of the darkest times in its history since the 2015 crisis.

GHANA: How parts of the media in Ghana aid – rather than fight – corruption

The Conversation: Corruption is a significant obstacle to development, democratic consolidation and environmental security, particularly in the developing world. 

GHANA: MFWA Welcomes the Suspension of Ministerial Directive to GBC by President Akufo-Addo

MFWA: The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) welcomes the Presidential decision to suspend execution of a Ministerial order to the state-owned Ghana Broadcasting Corporation GBC to surrender three of its six Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) channels, a directive the MFWA had challenged as “illegal and inimical.”

GUINEA BISSAU: Guinea Bissau: attack by gunmen silences opposition radio station in Bissau

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns an attack by gunmen that has silenced a popular opposition radio station in Bissau, the capital of Guinea-Bissau, and calls on the authorities to identify and punish those responsible.

NAMIBIA: NBC employee tests positive for coronavirus

The Namibian: A Namibian Broadcasting Corporation staff member from the newsroom in the broadcaster’s Windhoek headquarters has tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

SIERRA LEONE: Major Boost for Press Freedom as Sierra Leone Scraps Criminal Libel Law after 55 Years

MFWA: The Parliament of Sierra Leone on July 23, 2020 unanimously approved the Independent Media Commission (IMC) Act 2020 and repealed the 1965 Public Order Act (POA) that criminalized libel and sedition in what has been hailed as a historic moment for the media in the country.

SOUTH AFRICA: Communications Committee wants SABC to redo skills audit

SABC News: The Portfolio Committee on Communications says it will invite the SABC to discuss the consultation process it had with staff regarding the planned restructuring at the public broadcaster.

SOUTH AFRICA: Fight over SABC jobs goes to parliament

Times Live: Labour unions representing thousands of SABC workers and an internal staff formation representing news managers and senior journalists on Wednesday night took the fight for their jobs to parliament.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC Editorial Forum Worries Planned Retrenchments Will Affect News Services

Broadcasting and Media: The South Africa Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) Forum has said to the country’s Parliamentary Committee for Communications that it is deeply concerned that the planned retrenchment exercise within the corporation might harm SABC’s news service delivery mandate.

SOUTH AFRICA: Unions say SABC must test online streaming market before deciding on job cuts

News 24: Unions at the South African Broadcasting Corporation have told Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Communications that the public service broadcaster failed to consult employees about its turnaround and retrenchment plans.

SUDAN: Army threatens journalists and activists with lawsuits

IFJ: The Sudanese army has threatened activists and journalists with lawsuits for “insulting the military” on 18 July. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) had condemned the blanket threat and called on military forces to stop intimidating the press and respect freedom of expression.

ZIMBABWE: Former ZBC boss gets bail

The Herald: Former ZBC acting chief executive Wisdom Hombarume who was arrested last Friday on fraud, criminal abuse of office and smuggling involving over US$6 700, appeared in court over the weekend and was granted $5 000 bail.

ZIMBABWE: How Zimbabwe is clamping down on press freedom

The Independent: Hopewell Chin’ono is facing charges carrying up to 10 years in prison, writes Kim Sengupta

UGANDA: 2021 polls: Parties call for balanced media coverage

The Daily Monitor: The Inter-Party Organisation for Dialogue (IPOD) has appealed to media owners to give balanced coverage to all candidates vying for various political positions in the forthcoming national elections irrespective of their parties.

REGIONAL: African broadcasters increasing online presence – Covid-19 accelerates the process

Balancing Act: Recent changes in the African broadcast industry have had one common thread: the word online always comes up now almost every time you talk about them. Before Covid-19, some broadcasters were much more reticent about the idea. Russell Southwood sticks his finger in the broadcasting online pool to see how deep it is.

REGIONAL: Innovation and Opportunity: Covering The COVID-19 Pandemic in Africa

Radio Days Africa: Week 3 of Radio Days Africa 2020 hit the ground running today, with host Refiloe Mpakanyane talking to Ehizojie Okharedia (BBC News Editor in Nigeria) and Oluwatoyosi Ogunseye (Head of Language Services at BBC World Service in Nigeria) about how the BBC has responded to and covered the onset of the coronavirus on the African continent. Reaching audiences in the millions across a multitude of platforms in various languages, their news teams have had to adapt to the changing circumstances while continuing to do what they can to report on the lived, day-to-day realities of the African people. 

BANGLADESH: Bangladeshi journalists face physical attacks, legal cases, and detention amid COVID-19 pandemic

CPJ: Between March 10, 2020, and May 21, 2020, authorities detained at least six journalists in Bangladesh and opened investigations into at least nine more under the country’s Digital Security Act, according to news reports and CPJ interviews with journalists. At least seven other journalists were assaulted by both the authorities and political figures, according to news reports.

HONG KONG: Hong Kong press body ‘extremely concerned’ after police fine journalists covering protest

HKFP: The Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) has expressed “extreme concern” over the fining of reporters covering a shopping mall protest.

INDIA: “There Is No Decision To Stop Local Content Being Produced In Silchar, It Will Continue”: Prasar Bharati CEO Shashi S. Vempati

Barak Bulletin: Yesterday afternoon, Doordarshan Kendra Silchar stopped transmitting local content in the timeslot reserved for respective Programme Generating Facility. The head of programme, DDK Silchar said that she has received official communication from the Guwahati Kendra to “Stop transmitting local programmes and start telecasting the state channels.”

INDONESIA: Indonesian task force to tackle virus spread among journalists

Straits Times: The Indonesian Television Journalists Association (IJTI) has established a special task force to help curb the spread of Covid-19 among media workers after at least 96 journalists and electronic media workers contracted the disease.

MALAYSIA: Does Perikatan aim to tighten media freedom? (Opinion)

The Malaysian Insight: Media freedom and the right of the rakyat to exercise their freedom of expression that came alive during the 22-month reign of Pakatan Harapan (PH) is, unfortunately, going down the drain now. Recent drastic actions against by the authorities on the media seem to have taken several strides backwards.

MALAYSIA: Restrictive film licensing will curtail media freedom, kill creativity, warn MPs

Free Malaysia Today: Former communications and multimedia minister Gobind Singh Deo today said the Perikatan Nasional government’s “regressive stance” on film and social media could significantly curtail media freedom. 

MALDIVES: MMC expresses concern over police obstructing journalists covering opposition rally

Raajje: The council received reports of obstruction, during an opposition rally on Monday night.

NEPAL: NTA’s Bylaw jeopardizes FoE, information and privacy

Freedom Forum: Freedom Forum has been seriously concerned over the recently passed Bylaw of Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA). The provision on Rule 12 (L) of the Bylaw warrants serious attention.

PAKISTAN: Accountability court summons Jang/Geo Chief Editor for Aug 5

The News International: An Accountability court on Tuesday summoned Jang and Geo Media Group Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman and former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for Aug 5 in a reference pertaining to the purchase of a private land more than 30 years ago.

PAKISTAN: Journalist’s abduction raises concerns about media freedom in Pakistan

Global Voices: “Enforced disappearances are used […] to silence dissenters”

PAKISTAN: Matiullah Jan: Imran Khan’s government comes under scrutiny over journalist’s ‘abduction’

Deutsche Welle: Activists have raised concern over a systematic harassment of independent journalists amid a shrinking space for the freedom of expression. Pakistan’s powerful military has once again been accused of silencing dissent.

PAKISTAN: PTI govt proactively stifles freedom of press, says PPP’s Nayyar Bukhari

GEO News: PPP leader and General Secretary Nayyar Bukhari lambasted the PTI government on Saturday, saying that the party, which “came into existence thanks to the media”, is now proactively stifling the freedom of the press in the country.

PAKISTAN: PTV’s role (Opinion)

Dawn: The government has deferred a decision to increase the licence fee of PTV from Rs35 to Rs100 per month. While this is a sensible move for now, possibly under pressure from the public outcry, the decision to do so could be taken in the near future.

PHILIPPINES: A message to Filipinos: Keep journalism alive (Opinion)

Rappler: ‘Indeed, it is difficult to be a journalist at present, but that, in and of itself, is a reason to pursue the discipline of journalism even more’

PHILIPPINES: Manila court upholds Ressa cyber libel conviction, cites new 15-year period

Asia Pacific Report: Manila Judge Rainelda Estacio-Montesa has denied the motion for partial reconsideration filed by Rappler journalists, and upheld the cyber libel conviction of Rappler CEO and executive editor Maria Ressa and former researcher-writer Reynaldo Santos Jr.

PHILIPPINES: Media workers file petitions to reject Anti-Terror Law

IFJ: The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), journalists from Rappler, ABS-CBN, artists and cultural workers filed a petition for certiorari and prohibition of the controversial Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) supports its affiliate NUJP urging the court to overturn the law.

SOUTH KOREA: Role of public broadcaster (Editorial)

The Korean Times: The issue of raising the subscription fee for KBS, the national public broadcaster, has emerged as a hot potato after the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) chief agreed on the need to raise the fee that has been frozen at 2,500 won ($2.08) for 40 years.

TAIWAN: 3 top PTS officials resign over English program platform dispute

Focus Taiwan: Three top executives at Taiwan’s independent Public Television Service (PTS) resigned after the station’s board approved a plan Monday to prepare for the setting up of a controversial international programming platform in English. 

THAILAND: 5 new members of Thai PBS Board of Governors elected

Thai PBS World: A former senator, a social activist, a journalist, a flood management expert and an economist have been chosen as the five new members of the board of governors of the Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS).

TIMOR LESTE: Criminal defamation law continues despite opposition

IFJ: Timor-Leste’s Ministry of Justice claimed it removed a controversial article of the proposed defamation law after hearing public criticisms but has in fact retained the article which will deliver penalties and up to one year in prison for those found guilty. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate the Timor-Leste Press Union (TLPU) continue to condemn the proposed law as fundamentally flawed and urge authorities to immediately withdraw the law from consideration.

AUSTRALIA: ABC International reaches audiences close to 11 million each month on television, radio and online

ABC: For 80 years Australia has been broadcasting to audiences overseas. Each month, ABC International reaches a unique overseas audience of 10,967,000, through broadcast television, radio and ABC websites and apps.

AUSTRALIA: Australia’s ‘outdated’ defamation laws are changing – but there’s no ‘revolution’ yet

The Conversation: Australia’s defamation laws, so long criticised to so little avail, are finally changing. New South Wales Attorney-General Mark Speakman made an announcement following July’s meeting of the Council of Attorneys-General, where all Australian jurisdictions approved amendments to the Model Defamation Provisions.

AUSTRALIA: Former SBS newsreader Lee Lin Chin says she left broadcaster due to ‘mistreatment of staff

The Guardian: Decision to publicly rebuke SBS management follows revelations by other former staffers that they suffered racism in the workplace

AUSTRALIA: Scholarship for regional Australians with disability

ABC: The Morrison Government has partnered with the ABC to showcase the incredible work of up-and-coming content makers with disability and increase employment opportunities.

FIJI: FBC offers $117K free advertising package to 26 businesses

FBC News: Twenty-six businesses which felt the effects of COVID-19 will get three months free advertising with the Fijian Broadcasting Corporation. These businesses were stringently selected from hundreds of applications and will get be able to advertise with either radio, TV or web media to help bring in revenue. 

NEW ZEALAND: Journalist held for 6 years gains New Zealand refugee status

AP: A journalist who fled Iran and then exposed Australia’s degrading treatment of asylum-seekers while being held against his will for six years has been granted refugee status in New Zealand. 

NEW ZEALAND: Many and varied stories of Aotearoa commissioned in latest NZ On Air funding round

NZ On Air: Contemporary history, music, culture, architecture, and cancer are just some of the many subjects to be explored in 18 new and eight returning informative documentaries green lit in NZ On Air’s funding round this week.

NEW ZEALAND: Mosque attack coverage contributed to support for gun control in New Zealand

Stuff: Public support for gun control in the wake of the Christchurch mosque shootings was influenced by media coverage of the atrocity, according to a new study.

GENERAL: A time of reckoning: Racism and representation in media (Opinion)

The Spinoff: Mainstream news has a history of not always being the safest or most representative space for Black and indigenous people and other people of colour (BIPOC). Many have created their own spaces to address the imbalance, but some Māori media professionals say it’s time for everyone to get on the bi-cultural waka. 

ALBANIA: Albanian Media Struggles With Social Inclusiveness, Ownership Concentration, and Plurality

Exit: Albania has been categorised as a medium risk country in terms of the plurality of its media. This is according to the latest report from the Centre for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom.

FRANCE: A common digital platform for all public and private radio stations (French) 

Le Monde: The antennas of Lagardère News, Radio France and Les Indés Radios, among others, are coming together to offer a unique platform for listening to their programs.

FRANCE: “Atypical” radio audiences during confinement (French) 

Le Monde: Last stop before summer, everyone goes down! Revealed Thursday July 23 at 8 am by Médiamétrie, the last audience wave of the season is not a pretty sight. At the beginning of July, moreover, the radio operators were still hesitating: should they publish listening data collected in a period as extraordinary as that of confinement?

FRANCE: Delphine Ernotte secures second term as France Télévisions chief

Digital TV Europe: French media regulator the CSA has given Delphine Ernotte-Cunci a new five-year term as director-general of France Télévisions, the first time an incumbent has had their mandate extended in this way.

FRANCE: FranceTV Publicité deals with Orange, Bouygues set stage for targeted advertising

Digital TV Europe: France Télévisions’ advertising arm FranceTV Publicité has struck separate targeted advertising partnerships with service providers Orange and Bouygues Telecom within a few days of each other.

GERMANY: The future of the broadcasting institute remains open (German)

Horizont: The future of the Institute for Broadcasting Technology (IRT) of the public service broadcaster is still unclear. At a shareholders’ meeting on Thursday there was still no final decision. The research center in Munich announced later in the evening after the meeting: “In a short period of time, work will continue to be carried out intensively on the possibility of a continuation. The outcome is open.”

GERMANY: The ZDF yearbook 2019 (German)

ZDF: The ZDF yearbook 2019, which can be accessed at jahrbuch.zdf.de, is an annual report of the ZDF that is freely accessible to all interested parties. In five main chapters, ZDF provides extensive transparency and offers a detailed overview of a wide range of activities, key data and figures relevant to the reporting year.

GEORGIA: Georgia’s Communications Law Poses Serious Threat To Media Freedom

PEN America: Newly-passed bill places special managers in telecom companies, threatening news broadcasters in the country.

HUNGARY: Hungary’s Index journalists walk out over sacking

BBC News: More than 70 journalists and staff at Hungary’s top news site Index have resigned, accusing the government of launching a bid to destroy or tame their website.

HUNGARY: Index Sacking Worsens Pressure On Hungary’s Free Media

Balkan Insight: The sudden firing of Index’s editor, Szabolcs Dull, raises fears that press independence faces yet further limits in Hungary.

LUXEMBOURG: Radio ARA criticises new Media Support Bill

RTL: The independent Luxembourg radio station Radio ARA has released a statement criticising the government’s new Media Support Bill.

MALTA: Report: Political ownership of media puts pluralism at ‘high risk’ in Malta

The Shift News: A report by the Centre for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom looks at the chilling effect felt by local media following Daphne Caruana Galizia’s murder.

MOLDOVA: Moldovan Journalists Accuse Russian Peacemakers in Transnistria of Assault 

Balkan Insight: Two Moldovan journalists have filed a complaint with local police, claiming that Russian peacekeepers assaulted and intimidated them while they were shooting a video on the border with the breakaway Transnistria region.

MONTENEGRO: Adopted Laws Trigger New Fears for Media Freedom in Montenegro (Paywall)

Balkan Insight: Montenegro’s government wants to make it harder for journalists to protect their sources and step up political influence over the public broadcaster, media groups warn.

NETHERLANDS: NOS starts Olympic podcast (Dutch)

NOS: Premiere on Thursday, July 23: the NOS Olympic podcast. A podcast in which Dutch elite athletes tell everything about their route to the Tokyo Games in 2021. Henry Schut and Jeroen Stekelenburg visit elite athletes and talk to them about ambitions, dreams and opportunities for Tokyo 2021.

POLAND: Kurski to head TVP again

Broadband TV News: Jacek Kurski is effectively back in charge at the Polish public broadcaster TVP.

POLAND: Polish opposition seeks re-run of presidential election

Euractiv: “The opposition believes the government broke rules by too much campaign participation from the state administration and public broadcaster TVP”. 

PORTUGAL: Portugal pushes back DTT migration

Digital TV Europe: Portugal has pushed back the migration of digital-terrestrial TV services to clear the 700MHz spectrum for 5G by nine days because of delays to essential work caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

SLOVENIA: Slovenia Seen Emulating Hungary, Poland with Media Reforms

Balkan Insight: International media watchdogs have reacted with alarm to recently-unveiled plans by Slovenia’s government to amend public service media legislation, seeing the proposed changes as a brazen attempt to rein in state media that Prime Minister Janez Jansa has repeatedly accused of left-wing bias.

SLOVENIA: Slovenia’s government targets public media in midst of pandemic

IPI: New bill plans massive funding cuts that would jeopardize public service mission

SPAIN: Journalists operate in increasingly suffocating atmosphere in Spain

IPI: Polarization and attempts by far-right party to smear fact-checkers and journalists corner press freedom in the country. 

SPAIN:  The Government of Aragon denounces the “misrepresentation” of TVE and asks the management for responsibilities and explanations to Pedro Sánchez (Spanish)

20 minutos: Specifically, the Government of Aragon has approached the president of RTVE, Rosa María Mateo, demanding responsibilities, the opening of the corresponding investigation and, where appropriate, the removal of the Director of Information , Enric Hernández. In addition, it has transferred this discomfort to the Government of Spain.

SPAIN: Two years of Rosa María Mateo that deepened the crisis of RTVE (Spanish)

infoLibre: Provisionality, an emergency solution in the absence of political agreement, has become a dead end in which questions are asked until the public contest, which was established by the law three years ago. The latest layoffs and resignations bring new uncertainties for workers, while management makes medium and long-term decisions incompatible with its provisional nature.

UK: AudioUK releases COVID-19 production guidelines 

Radio Today: Trade body AudioUK has released a new set of publicly-available guidelines for producers to safely work on productions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

UK: BBC News reaching highest ever global audience

BBC News: BBC News is now reaching its largest ever audience outside the UK, according to new figures. A total of 438 million people from around the world came to BBC News on average every week in the year to March.

UK: First radio show broadcast from new BBC Wales HQ

Radio Today: The first radio programme to be broadcast from the new BBC Wales headquarters in Cardiff city centre took place over the weekend. BBC Radio Cymru 2 went live from Central Square at 7am on Saturday and at 11am BBC Radio Cymru broadcast its first programme from the new building.

UK: Free TV licences: over‑75s launch ‘guerrilla warfare’ on BBC to escape fee (Paywall)

The Times: The BBC has been accused of a “distinctly amateurish” start to charging over-75s for television licences as it emerged that pensioners will not receive a letter outlining the change until after it takes effect.

UK: ITVS, BBCS outline intention to expand BritBox into 25 countries

TBI Vision: BBC Studios (BBCS) and ITV Studios (ITVS) have said they intend to expand the presence of their joint venture streaming service BritBox around the world.

REGIONAL: MPM2020: Media in Europe face multiple threats, new Media Pluralism Monitor shows

ECPMF: The 2020 Media Pluralism Monitor confirms mounting harassment against journalists, media outlets face increasing economic uncertainty, as online media sphere fails to reinforce pluralism.


Barbados Advocate: It is time for media houses in this island to provide continuous training and a higher level of salary for journalists. President of the Barbados Association of Journalists and Media Workers (BARJAM), Emmanuel Joseph, made this clear on Sunday night’s The People’s Business program.

BRAZIL: Brazil’s Bolsonaro asks top court to unblock supporters’ profiles amid fake news probe

Reuters: Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has challenged a Supreme Court order that blocked several of his supporters’ profiles on social networks amid an ongoing fake news investigation, the right-wing president said using his own social media accounts on Saturday evening. 

BRAZIL: Piauí Journalists Union expresses concern about the imprisonment of journalist Arimatéia Azevedo (Portuguese)

FENAJ: The Union of Professional Journalists of the State of Piauí understands that a judicial decision is to be respected, but cannot accept without expressing concern and indignation the decision made on this date, July 22, 2020, by the State Court of Justice, through the 2nd Chamber Specialized Criminal, to imprison journalist Arimatéia Azevedo in a prison unit.

COLOMBIA: Colombian journalist Karoll Pineda discusses reporting during COVID-19

IJNET: The Global Health Crisis Reporting Forum from ICFJ and IJNet is a place for reporters around the world to connect on how COVID-19 is impacting both their country and their work. This is the second in a series of features through which we take a deeper look at the individual stories and work of journalists in the Forum.

COLOMBIA: With espionage of journalists, Colombia worsens in press freedom index (Spanish)

Semana: The exercise of the free press is increasingly difficult for Colombian journalists.

ECUADOR: 83% of Public Media employees were dismissed (Spanish)

El Norte: The manager of the Public Media, Édison Toro, announced on 24 July the separation of some 500 people. 

NICARAGUA: The press is still under attack in Nicaragua (Spanish)

La Hora

PARAGUAY: Paraguayan soldiers assault, detain journalist Roberto Esquivel

CPJ: On July 18, Paraguayan soldiers detained journalist Roberto Esquivel, a local freelance journalist, in the city of Bella Vista Norte, near the Brazilian border, while he was reporting on the country’s shutdown amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to media reports and a statement by the Paraguayan Journalists Union, a local trade group.

VENEZUELA: Venezuelan authorities charge 2 journalists, imprison 1, under ‘anti-hate’ law

CPJ: On July 13, at about 2 p.m., police and counterintelligence agents raided Evans’ Caracas home in his absence, and confiscated a mobile phone and other equipment, according to tweets by Venezuelan press freedom organization Espacio Público

VENEZUELA: VOA visa decision could hobble Venezuela coverage

The Hill: The decision not to renew visas for foreign journalists at the U.S. Agency for Global Media (USAGM) could endanger a key part of the administration’s Venezuela policy, as a news show specialized on the country is at risk of losing its top talent.  

IRAN: Prison sentences for relatives of Iranian journalists

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the Iranian government’s harassment and persecution of the relatives of journalists, after the mother of an imprisoned journalist and the brother of a journalist living in self-imposed exile were given jail sentences within the space of two days last week

SAUDI ARABIA & YEMEN: Saudi Arabia: Yemeni Blogger Convicted for Supporting LGBT Rights

HRW: A Saudi court sentenced a Yemeni blogger to jail and then deportation to Yemen for a social media post supporting equal rights for all in Saudi Arabia, Human Rights Watch said today. 

QATAR: Journalist rejects $250,000 cash award from Qatar Anti-Corruption Centre

ICIR: KHADIJA Ismail, Azerbaijani investigative journalist has rejected a cash award of $250,000 from Qatar’s Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption Centre. According to JAM news, Khadija declined the award after looking into the activities of the centre and discovering the fund was created by the Emir of Qatar, who had closed the Center for Investigative Journalism in Qatar. 

SYRIA: Women journalists in northwest Syria brave daily dangers

Al-Monitor: Syrian female journalists are confronted with several problems and abuses, based on the sole fact that they are working women.

TURKEY: Turkish social media bill presages ‘new dark era’ of censorship, say critics

Arab News: A proposed law that Turkey says will make social media companies more accountable to local regulations will rather increase censorship and accelerate a trend of authorities silencing dissent, critics including a UN body said this week.

REGIONAL: Middle Eastern journalists targeted by misogynistic smear campaigns

IPI: Female journalists faced double threat due to their profession and gender.

REGIONAL: On the sidelines of the United Nations Human Rights Council’s 44th session, MENA Network for Countering Hate Speech call for united efforts to combat hate speech against MENA human rights defenders and journalists

MADA Center 

CANADA: A message from Barbara Williams

CBC/Radio-Canada: Message from CBC’s Executive Vice-President English Services, Barbara Williams regarding the organisation’s recently launched Being Black in Canada website. 

CANADA: Black journalist who witnessed N-word used in Fifth Estate meeting calls for broader change at CBC

CBC/Radio-Canada: Former associate producer Dexter Brown says he wasn’t satisfied with how complaint last year was handled. 

CANADA: CBC Launches Expanded Website Being Black In Canada, Featuring The Stories And Experiences Of Black Canadians

CBC: CBC has launched an expanded BEING BLACK IN CANADA website featuring the stories and experiences of Black Canadians, highlighting narratives that matter to Black communities including relevant news pieces, individual successes, and historical content. 

CANADA: ‘I must speak, I have no choice but to speak’: CBC’s Adrian Harewood talks about his decades-long fight against systemic racism in the media (Paywall) 

The Hill Times: ‘At the end of the day, we need more representation by a diverse group of people in positions of power, in decision-making positions,’ says Adrian Harewood.

US: Beyond the statement: How journalism funders can act in solidarity with marginalized communities

The EJ Lab: “We stand in solidarity with Black communities. Black Lives Matter.” Organizations, businesses, and groups across the United States sent this statement to millions of people via social media feeds and e-mail lists in early June 2020, in the wake of widespread protests for racial justice. 

US: Crosscut union pushes for workforce diversity provisions in contract with Cascade Public Media (Paywall)


US: Local journalism is on its knees – endangering democracy. Who will save it?

The Guardian: Long struggling industry faces an ‘extinction event’ amid Covid-19, robbing large swathes of the US of news coverage

US: Here’s how CUNY’s new Black Media Initiative aims to elevate and serve Black publications

Nieman Lab: “Black press has always been hyperlocal. But for whatever reason, the Black press has never gotten some of those [buzzword] labels…That plays into the perception of these places within the larger sphere.”

US: New Hampshire Public Radio lanches climate change project “By Degrees” (Paywall)


US: Opinion: Trump administration puts the U.S., world’s journalism and reporters at risk (Opinion)

Houston Chronicle: The decision to freeze and review all visas for Voice of America journalists follows the dismissal of senior staff and independent boards at the five media outlets under the USAGM and the Open Technology Fund by the newly-appointed CEO Michael Pack. 

US: Public Television Receives Three Daytime Emmy® Awards

PBS: …PBS KIDS’s ODD SQUAD won Outstanding Sound Editing for a Live Action Program. Fellow public media nominee APT (American Public Television) received two awards, including Outstanding Directing for Multiple Camera Daytime Program for MILK STREET, and Outstanding Sound Mixing for ARTICULATE WITH JIM COTTER.

US: Race and the newsroom: What seven research studies say

Nieman Lab: Differing notions of objectivity in Black and mainstream white newspapers, how white reporters see their ethical obligations in covering race, the ways that reporters’ race affects their coverage of political candidates, and more.

US: The New York Times’ special section on disability is available in Braille and audio and has its own style guide

Nieman Lab: “We are really trying to make strides as an organization toward accessibility but it was clear that if ever there were a reason to make a concerted effort to push the operation forward, it would be for this package.”

US: United Nations calls on US police to halt use of force against journalists covering protests

The Independent: The plea comes amid a rise in attacks on members of the press by American authorities – as well as more arrests.

US: US federal law officers attack journalists covering protests in Portland

CPJ: U.S. federal law enforcement agencies must ensure that journalists can cover protests freely, and must refrain from attacking members of the press, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. 

US: Will changes to print outlast the pandemic?

CJR: As part of the Journalism Crisis Project, the Tow Center continues to tabulate an increasingly grim number of cutbacks in the field; reduced, suspended, or aborted print runs make up a notable portion of the list. 

Audience Trends: Television 2020 (Report)

EBU: Discover the latest trends in TV audiences with this European Broadcasting Union annual TV audience report. The report presents the latest figures for both viewing and listening times, reach, and PSM market share across Europe. 

COVID-19 has increased gender inequalities in the media, IFJ survey finds

IFJ: More than half of women journalists have experienced increased gender inequalities due to COVID-19, according to a new survey conducted by International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) among more than 500 women journalists in 52 countries, published on 23 July.

Digital Radio Has Expanded Community Messaging (Commentary)

Radio World: Broadcasters are serving their listeners by enhancing PSAs with text and visuals.

EBU joins WBU call for commitment to media freedom and independence in times of crisis (Press release)

EBU: The World Broadcasting Unions (WBU) urgently calls for guaranteed commitments on protecting media independence and safeguarding freedom of expression during global crises.

How Free Is the Press in the World’s Richest Countries

24/7 WallSt.: Across the world, freedom of the press is entering a critical era. Several crises, from the coronavirus pandemic to a polarized public — have serious consequences for journalism and global press freedom.

Jailed Journalists Face New Threat: COVID-19

VOA: The deaths from COVID-19 of two imprisoned journalists this month have raised alarm among press freedom advocates, who are calling for all journalists to be released during the pandemic.

Journalists at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic: Is the pandemic an alibi for “silent censorship

Safe Journalists: As the coronavirus pandemic is declared, journalists face numerous limitations in their work. Access to information is made more difficult. Sessions of the legislative and executive authorities are monitored online, and in most cases it is not possible to go to the field to cover the event or the media that can be present at the meeting are chosen beforehand.

My mental health journey: How PTSD gave me the strength to share my story (Opinion)

Poynter: Covering traumatic stories and facing distressing circumstances take a toll on journalists. Newsrooms must address it, but taboos are in the way.

Podcasting to Break Billion-Dollar Barrier in 2021

Radio World: There’s good news on the horizon for podcast revenue growth, and presumably for radio organizations that are active in that space.

The hidden impact of reporting on covid-19 from the frontline

Journalism.co.uk: From fragile mental health to separated families, eight international journalists open up about their work and life while reporting on the deadly pandemic

What Happens When Academia and Media Work Together

BIRD: When journalists team up with university researchers, only good things can come of it. With scale and structure, this type of collaboration can solve many, if not all, of the woes both journalism and academia are faced with.

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Header image: Media interview stock photo. Credit: microgen/iStock