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: “DRC transition won’t be historic if journalists continue to be attacked”

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and its partner organization, Journalist in Danger (JED), call on the Democratic Republic of Congo’s new president, Félix Tshisekedi, to protect journalists and to end impunity for crimes of violence against the media in what is sub-Saharan Africa’s worst press freedom violator.

EGYPT: After spring came winter: The fall of the Egyptian media

Aljazeera: Eight years since the revolution, the squeeze on Egypt’s embattled media is tighter than ever before.

EGYPT: Sisification of the Media – a Hostile Takeover

RSF: Under strongman President al-Sisi, the situation is deteriorating faster and faster as the whole media landscape is being restructured through systematic transfers of property, including an involvement of the security and intelligence apparatus. As a result it is now left almost fully aligned with the current regime.

LIBERIA: Pres. Weah Reaffirms Support to Free Speech, Media Freedom

Via All Africa: President George Weah has promised his government’s continued commitment to the sustenance of peace, free speech and media freedom, an Executive Mansion release has said.

NAMIBIA: ‘Grow thicker skins’, NMT tells politicians

NMT: Freedom of speech must be protected at all costs as a fundamental right which is entrenched in our constitutional bill of rights.

NIGERIA:  Amnesty International Raises Alarm Over Increasing Attacks On Journalists

The Guardian (Nigeria): Amnesty International (AIN) has said clampdown on the press, raids on media organisations and arbitrary arrests and detention of journalists, is preventing people from freely expressing themselves.

SUDAN: More than 100 press freedom violations in Sudan since start of protests

RSF: The crackdown is reaching alarming levels, with RSF tallying more than 100 press freedom violations in the past month. They include 66 arrests of journalists, six cases of accreditation being withdrawn from the correspondents of foreign media (including Al Jazeera and the Turkish news agency Anadolu), and 34 seizures of newspaper issues.

SOUTH AFRICA: Netflix’s Effect On South African Content

Broadcast Media Africa: Due to Netflix’s rapid growth in South Africa, MyBroadband recently had discussions with various experts about whether the global streaming giant could overtake DStv in terms of popularity in South Africa.

SUDAN: Sudan: The clampdown on journalists must stop immediately

IFJ: Several journalists have been targeted by the Sudanese authorities amid the massive public protests. Several media staff have had their media accreditation revoked this week.

TUNISIA: Bloggers Held for Criticizing Officials

HRW: Arrests, Charges Lead to Self-Censorship.

GENERAL: Undemocratic regimes in sub-Saharan Africa undermine anti-corruption efforts

Transparency International: This year’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) presents a largely gloomy picture for Africa – only eight of 49 countries score more than 43 out of 100 on the index.

CAMBODIA: Gov’t Warns Media of Repercussions for Journalists Who Write About the ‘Hun Sen Regime’

VOA: Interior Minister Sar Kheng said journalists using these terms “do not respect the will of the Cambodian people, who turned out to vote”.

CHINA: Over half of foreign correspondents say reporting conditions in China deteriorated in 2018 – report

HKFP: Over half of foreign correspondents say reporting conditions in China deteriorated last year, according to the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China’s (FCCC) annual report on the country’s press freedom.

CHINA: China: Three jailed as Government crackdown on freedom of expression continues

IFJ: In ` 2018, three journalists – Sun Lin, Zhen Jianghua, Ding Lingjie – were each convicted and sentenced for ‘inciting subversion’ and ‘insulting a state leader’.

INDIA: Prasar Bharati fills up 4 vacant MPEG-2 slots on DD FreeDish

Indian Television: Aajtak Tej, Republic Bharat, Surya Samachar and Kushboo Bangla are the recipients

JAPAN: ‘Fear’ and ‘favour’ chill newsroom at storied Japanese paper

Reuters: Early in December, dozens of journalists and editors from the Japan Times gathered for an emergency meeting in a glass-walled conference room in their brand-new 14th floor office.

MALDIVES: ACC investigating 14 cases regarding state media PSM

Raajje: Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has stated that it is investigating 14 cases regarding Public Service Media (PSM).

MALDIVES: Maldives falls in Corruption Perception Index

The Maldives Independent: The Maldives has fallen on Transparency International’s annual Corruption Perception Index for the third consecutive year, ranking 124 out of 180 countries.

PAKISTAN: Cabinet approves merger of all media regulatory bodies

Dawn: The federal cabinet on Thursday approved formation of the Pakistan Media Regulatory Authority (PMRA) that envisages merger of all bodies regulating media, including the print and electronic media.

PAKISTAN: Pakistan Media Regulatory Authority to have disastrous impact: APNS

The News International: The All Pakistan Newspapers Society has strongly deplored the decision of the federal cabinet on the formation of Pakistan Media Regulatory Authority, which is unacceptable to the media and the civil society of Pakistan.

THAILAND: Thailand’s military junta cracks down on social media ahead of election

The Guardian: Restrictions on political parties’ campaigning raises questions of how free and fair will much-postponed poll be.

AUSTRALIA: Australian TV in the Pacific not what is needed – lobby group

RNZ: An Australian media lobbying group says plans to broadcast Australian television content into the Pacific isn’t what the region needs.

FIJI: Critics see Fiji’s Online Safety Act as ‘Trojan horse’ for online censors

Asia Pacific Report: Fiji’s Online Safety Act took effect this month amid concerns that it will be used to censor the internet.

TONGA: Outage forces Tongan govt to restrict internet

RNZ: When Tonga lost all cell phone and internet connection to the outside world on Sunday evening, Paula Piveni Piukala, the country’s cable director happened to be attending a regional Telecommunications conference in Hawai’i.

CROATIA: Croatian Lawmakers Scrutinise Public Broadcaster’s Media Lawsuits

Safe Journalists: Lawmakers in Croatia will discuss on Wednesday a spate of lawsuits filed by the country’s public broadcaster against journalists, media outlets and journalism associations, a practice critics say amounts to an attack on media freedom.

ESTONIA: ERR election broadcasting regulations overview

ERR: Public broadcaster ERR is on its general elections regime between now and polling day on 3 March, and its coverage will be in line with these regulations, explains ERR ombudsman Tarmu Tammerk.

FRANCE: France: Senate approves proposed law creating neighboring rights for publishers and remuneration for journalists (French)

IFJ: Presented by the members of the Socialist Republican Group of the Senate, it submits to the authorization of the agencies and the press publishers the reproduction and the communication of their productions to the public and provides their retribution during the on-line re-use of these productions.

FRANCE: France Télévisions ups digital docs to strengthen online portal

Digital TV Europe: French public broadcaster France Télévisions is to devote 5% of its documentaries budget to content for its digital platforms over the next three years as it seeks to bolster its online portal, according to local reports.

FRANCE: Overseas territories: franceinfo will replace France 24 on TNT (French)

Puremédias: Forced by the economy, France 24 gives up its broadcasting on DTT in the DOM-TOM.

IRELAND: Cash-strapped RTE may face ‘difficult choices’ – BAI chief

Independent.ie: RTE will have ‘difficult choices’ to make in relation to the range of services it can provide if the Government does not agree to increase its funding, according to Michael O’Keeffe, chief executive of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI).

IRELAND: Communications Minister to raise concerns over salary levels with RTÉ

RTÉ: The Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton has pledged to raise the issue of high salaries with RTÉ.

LITHUANIA: Journalist association protests public broadcaster selection process, regulator hits back

LSM: The Latvian Journalists Association (LŽA) has issued a statement calling for the termination of a current recruitment effort to find a head for the national broadcaster Latvian Television (LTV, of which LSM forms a part).

MOLDOVA: Moldovan Journalists Under Unprecedented Fire Before Election

Balkan Insight: Journalists in Moldova have exposed corruption, fraud and embezzlement by politicians, and they are increasingly coming under attack because of it.

SERBIA: Serbia Leader Announces Arrest of Mayor Over Attack on Journalist

VOA: Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic announced the arrest of the mayor of a Belgrade suburb on Friday in connection with an attack on a journalist that has become a cause for protesters during nearly two months of anti-government demonstrations.

SPAIN: Spain to challenge TV duopoly abuse

Broadband TV News: The Spanish regulator CNMC will shortly directly address the market dominance enjoyed by Atresmedia and Mediaset, the country’s two leading commercial broadcasters.

SPAIN: The contest to choose the president of RTVE stalls again (Catalan)

ara.cat: More than twenty aspirants have filed appeals against the decision of the committee of experts.

UK: BBC Global News ends 2018 on a high

BBC: BBC Global News enjoyed a hugely successful year in 2018 with ambitious new product launches, award wins and ever-increasing audiences coming to its impartial coverage

UK: Brexit boost for BBC Parliament as channel briefly outrates MTV

The Guardian: Brexit boost for BBC Parliament as channel briefly outrates MTV

UK: CBeebies launches Go Explore app

Advanced Television: CBeebies has launched the Go Explore, offering a range of games linked to the curriculum, featuring Go Jetters, Hey Duggee and The Furchester Hotel, helping youngsters to develop life skills and prepare them for primary school and beyond.

UK: How the BBC is tackling the ‘growing’ problem of fake news in Asia and Africa

The Drum: The BBC World Service is demonstrating fake news’ impact beyond the English-speaking world and pressuring tech companies to take action to surface respectable news outlets more effectively.

UK: Microsoft Education joins BBC Learning, Angelina Jolie and BBC World Service in developing current affairs programme for children

BBC: Plans include launch of media literacy and journalism initiative in classrooms around the world.

UKRAINE: 86 incidents of aggression against journalists recorded in 2018

IFJ: The National Union of Journalists of Ukraine (NUJU), an IFJ affiliate, has recorded 86 attacks against media workers in 2018.

UKRAINE: Models of financing of Public broadcaster in Ukraine

COE: 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 was held in Strasbourg on 24 January 2019.

GENERAL: EBU members highlight challenges faced by PSM at the Parliamentary Assembly of Council of Europe

EBU: The discussion, chaired by former EBU Vice President Boris Bergant, focused on the role of PSM in providing high quality, verified content which addresses all sections of society, including minorities.

GENERAL: Google is threatening to kill Google News in Europe if the EU goes ahead with its “snippet tax”

NiemanLab: This is a battle that’s been fought in Europe before, most notably in Spain in 2014. But for a variety of reasons — shifts in publisher business models and the move to mobile highest among them — the power dynamics are a little different this time around.

REGIONAL: Complex relationship between the media and politics

Nordicom: In a new study, researchers examine how close, or far apart, media and political power are from each other in four different countries. The complex relationship between media and politics has consequences with regard to shaping the public image of politics and individual politicians.

REGIONAL: Media capture Central European style

Green European Journal: The region is a prime example of how vested interests can create a quasi-monopoly on media and information, increasingly cementing control and influence over opinions.

ARGENTINA: Hard statement from TV Pública staff: there are almost no in house programmes produced (Spanish)

Diario Registrado: Delegates of the channel denounce that the official policies on public media advance leaving them in paralysis: “only 28% corresponds to programs produced by TV Pública staff”, they say.

BRAZIL: Attacks against journalists in Brazil increase over last year, according to Fenaj

Knight Center: The cases of aggression against journalists in Brazil grew 36.7 percent between 2017 and 2018, according to a recent report from the National Federation of Journalists (Fenaj). There were 135 incidents of violence with 227 victims, according to the organization.

BRAZIL: Why Brazil failed to create its own BBC

The Brazilian Report

COLOMBIA: Colombian startup goes beyond reporting, launches public conversation around current issues

IJNET: In an era of experimentation and transformation in journalism, new publishing models have been pushing back against traditional media. That’s the case of Mutante, a Spanish-language online project based in Colombia that produces investigative reporting for social change.

COLOMBIA: Manager of Colombian public media system presents his resignation after complaints of censorship

Knight Center: After a little more than 24 hours of controversy created in Colombia after the publication of an audio recording in which the manager of the country’s Public Media System (RCTV) is heard looking for options to remove a program whose presenter criticized a government bill, Juan Pablo Bieri presented his resignation to the Colombian president.

MEXICO: Public media, a challenge (Spanish – Opinion)

El Economista 30: “I am left with concerns because one thing is public media policy and another is a social communication policy or programme. They are not the same and cannot be put in the same basket.”

NICARAGUA: Police guard facilities of Channel 12 in Nicaragua and inspect staff

Knight Center: On the morning of Jan. 24, Nicaraguan Channel 12 was surrounded by riot police and more than thirty red beret police officers, reported Artículo 66.

VENEZUELA: CPJ Safety Advisory: Covering the political crisis in Venezuela

CPJ: CPJ has put out the following advice for local and foreign journalists working in Venezuela, or planning to travel there.

VENEZUELA: Raids, media shutdowns and internet disruptions amid Venezuela crisis

CPJ: Venezuelan authorities on January 23 raided at least three newsrooms in southern Venezuela, took at least one television outlet off air, detained two reporters, confiscated reporting equipment, and forced members of the press to delete their material, according to local journalists and local press freedom organizations. Access to the internet was also disrupted.

VENEZUELA: Venezuela’s war on the press

CJR: Venezuela’s journalists—and its citizens—are paying a very great price for their attempts to get at the truth.

IRAN: Amnesty criticizes Iran’s mass arrests as US frees reporter

ABC News (US): Iran arrested more than 7,000 people last year, including dozens of journalists, in what Amnesty International on Thursday called a “shameless campaign of repression” as the U.S. released an American anchorwoman for Iranian state television held for days as a material witness.

IRAN: Iran’s president says media censorship has backfired on regime

Euronews: Iranian president Hasan Rouhani has declared his country’s efforts to censor the internet a failure.

IRAQ: Iraq: 7 journalists attacked by Kurdish security forces

IFJ: Seven journalists and media staff working for local television NRT were attacked and detained for several hours on Saturday, January 26, while covering protests against a Turkish military base in the town of Shaladze, located in Iraq’s Kurdish region.

TURKEY: Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week beginning January 20, 2019


GENERAL: Editor’s Pick: Best Investigative Journalism in Arabic 2018

GIJN: In the Middle East and North Africa, resources for producing independent journalism are shrinking while laws restricting the freedom of press — including electronic crimes laws in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon — are swelling alongside the numbers of journalists languishing in prison in countries such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

CANADA: Call for applications: CJF-CBC Indigenous Journalism Fellowships

CISION: To raise the profile of Indigenous voices and issues in the media, The Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF), together with CBC News, is now accepting applications to its CJF-CBC Indigenous Journalism Fellowships program.

CANADA: How Canadian reporter Daniel Dale fact-checks Trump (Listen)

CBC News: Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale tries to fact check everything U.S President Donald Trump says. It keeps him working at all hours and his reporting has drawn attention all over the world.

CANADA: Netflix: competition, not regulation, is the way to stimulate Canadian content

CTV News: Netflix says it shouldn’t be forced to pay into funds that are designed to support the creation of Canadian content, arguing that the country is better served by market competition than by regulating foreign online services.

US: A brutal week for American journalism


US: How independent journalists are covering more than just ‘the amount of rust’ in America’s overlooked regions


US: PBS has asked the FCC to give public broadcasters additional financial assistance for repacking channels without “burdensome” added paperwork. (Paywall)

Current: PBS has asked the FCC to give public broadcasters additional financial assistance for repacking channels without “burdensome” added paperwork.

US: The Conversation: PBS President Paula Kerger on replacing Charlie Rose, keeping Ken Burns and streaming

The LA Times: Paula Kerger has visited 49 states since she took over as president and chief executive of PBS in 2006. And after all those miles and new studio ribbon cuttings, it’s the words of a farmer who drove five hours to see her during a visit in Lincoln, Neb., that stands out most in her mind.

#MeToo #SolutionsToo grants enable journalists to report on sexual offences

Journalism.co.uk: Three freelance journalists explain how grants of up to $1,500 from Solutions Journalism Network have helped them report on solutions to sexual offences across the world

Berlin-based publication by refugees, for refugees

IJNet: Nearly one million Syrians, Iraqis and Afghans took refuge in Germany since 2012. The social integration of these newcomers is one of the main challenges the German society is currently facing. On the frontline of refugee integration efforts is Amal, an online publication that reports on German local news in Arabic and Persian.

Electronic Devices Outnumber Humans & Trigger a Surge in E-Waste

IPS: The widespread innovations in modern digital technology have a devastating downside to it: the accumulation of over 50 million tonnes of electronics waste (e-waste) globally every year.

Facebook to create ‘war room’ to fight fake news, Nick Clegg says

The Guardian: Dublin operations centre to target political misinformation ahead of EU elections in May

Future of digital journalism in question as BuzzFeed and HuffPost lay off 1,000

The Guardian: Job losses follow sales or cuts at Mic, Refinery29 and elsewhere, but publishing as a whole had already shrunk sharply

How Innovative Newsrooms Are Using Artificial Intelligence

GIJN: “If instead of fearing it, journalists embrace AI, it could become the savior of the trade — making it possible for them to better cover the increasingly complex, globalized and information-rich world we live in.”

How the media can contribute to conflict transformation

DW: Observer, activist, target: the media can play various roles in conflicts. Can they also help to bring peace?

Meet the eight European news organizations with (funded) plans for engaged journalism

NiemanLab: The Engaged Journalism Accelerator, funded by the News Integrity Initiative and Civil, shared the eight newsrooms chosen for its second round of boosting journalism that involves audiences at a deeper level.

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: TV-Studio. Credits: freie-kreation/istock.