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...

My small town – about how the local big city is covered by the media (Swedish)

Sveriges Radio: Last week, the latest #srfrukosten was broadcast live, which was about how the media handles reporting of the big cities’ surrounding areas. Are important local issues at risk of disappearing in the noise from national news of national interest? Now it is available to listen to also via the Swedish Radio blog.

What we're watching...

Yet another attack on press freedom in France? Paris reels from stabbing 

France 24: We take a look at online reactions to the stabbing in Paris that left two journalists badly injured. The attack in Paris’s 11th district seems symbolic to many, taking place as it did outside Charlie Hebdo’s former offices, and as alleged accomplices in the 2015 terrorist attack stand trial.

Global Headlines

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

ALGERIA: Algeria: Press Freedom Group Condemns Censorship As Algeria Bans French TV Channel 

AllAfrica: In a move denounced as censorship by Reporters Without Borders, the Algerian Ministry of Communications says it will “no longer authorise” the private French television channel M6 to operate in Algeria. This follows the broadcast by M6 of a “distorted” documentary on the anti-government protest movement Hirak.

CAMEROON: Cameroon: Repression of protests and attacks against the media must be investigated

Article 19: ARTICLE 19 urges the Cameroonian authorities to investigate the excessive use of force during peaceful protests in Yaounde and other cities in Cameroon on 22 September 2020. They must immediately release all protesters who were arrested solely for expressing their opinion and investigate attacks against journalists ill-treated and arrested for collecting information on the protest.

GHANA: Unilever partners GBC to promote Ghanaian culture

GBC: The Director General of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation, Prof. Amin Alhassan says the decision to maintain some Television Channels of the Corporation is to promote Ghana’s culture.

MOROCCO: Morocco: RSF appeals urgently to UN to condemn use of trumped-up sex charges against journalists

RSF: After the appearance of Moroccan journalist Omar Radi in court on rape charges, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urges the United Nations to take a stand publicly against the misuse of sex charges against journalists by the Moroccan authorities in an attempt to silence them.

NAMIBIA: Govt urged to pass information bill

The Namibian: Namibia’s Action Coalition is calling on the government to pass and implement the access to information bill as a matter of urgency.

NIGERIA: Nigeria: Regulator Supports Local Company’s Launch Of Pay-Per-View TV Model

Broadcast Media Africa: Nigeria’s National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has renewed its support for a local satellite TV company’s bid to roll-out a pay-per-view TV model in Nigeria.

SOUTH AFRICA: Experts applaud SABC for role in informing and educating the public

SABC News: The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of the media and in particular the public broadcaster in informing and educating the public.

SOUTH AFRICA: How DSTV Can Help The SABC Fix Its TV Licence Problem

Media Monitoring Africa: MyBroadband spoke to William Bird from Media Monitoring Africa and independent media analyst Nozi Dikgale about the relevance of TV licences in South Africa. Bird said there were numerous reasons why South Africans were not paying their TV licences.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABA Joins BMA On Programme To Preserve Africa’s Audio-Visual Media Assets

Broadcast Media Africa: Broadcast content preservation practitioners and professionals from across the world are set to have a collaborative platform to enable best working practices, standards and solutions that will help professionals safeguard and preserve legacy audio-visual content in Africa.

UGANDA: Broadcasters oppose guidelines for Uganda’s 2021 general elections

Kampala Dispatch: Broadcasters are protesting the proposed guidelines issued by Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) ahead of the 2021 polls. The broadcasters describe the guidelines as unfair, saying they were never consulted by the regulator.

UGANDA: Uganda: CSOs Ask Govt to Disclose More Information On Coronavirus

Via AllAfrica: As the country joins the rest of the world to celebrate the International Day of Access to Information, Civil Society Organisations (CSO) have asked ministries, departments and agencies to disclose public information on Covid-19 as a way to enforce the law.

ZIMBABWE: Zimbabwe Parliament Applauded For Robust Debate On ZMC Bill

MISA: MISA Zimbabwe is encouraged by the robust and non-partisan debate in Parliament on 24 September 2020 on the Zimbabwe Media Commission Bill. This is a positive and progressive step towards promoting democratic governance in Zimbabwe.

REGIONAL: Africa: Journalists Targeted Across the Continent

AllAfrica: Decades after many governments across the continent loosened control over broadcasters and publishers, the media industry is under threat.

BANGLADESH: TIB demands review of Digital Security Act 

The Daily Star: Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) yesterday demanded that the Digital Security Act 2018 be reviewed with its “repressive” provisions dropped to ensure the free flow of information and press freedom.

HONG KONG: Hong Kong online media alliance urges police to amend new definition for journalists 

Hong Kong Free Press: A local online media organisation alliance has urged the Hong Kong police to amend new guidelines that only recognise the credentials of journalists registered with the government or part of “internationally-recognised” outlets.

HONG KONG: Hong Kong police tighten control on media with new accreditation rules

The Guardian: Hong Kong authorities have moved to further constrain the city’s free press with an announcement by police that they would no longer recognise certain types of media accreditation. 

HONG KONG: RTHK union demands answers over Nabela Qoser probe (Watch)

RTHK News: The RTHK Programme Staff Union has described the decision to extend the probationary period for journalist Nabela Qoser as “political persecution”, and warned that there would be repercussions if questions over the decision are not properly addressed.

INDIA: Prasar Bharati’s Threat to PTI on ‘Anti-National Reporting’ Did Not Have Board Clearance

The Wire: RTI queries reveal the issue never came up before the public broadcaster’s board and that the department head had no authority to send an ultimatum to PTI. What remains unclear is on whose instructions the official acted.

JAPAN: A media adversary’s long battle with Japan’s new Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide

Global Voices: Reporter Mochizuki Isoko is a champion of press freedom

KASHMIR: Kashmir cyber-police threaten, slap reporter who questioned their methods

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the threats and violence, including being slapped in the face, to which Kashmiri journalist Auqib Javeed was subjected during a five-hour interrogation by cyber-police in Srinagar, the capital of Indian-administered Kashmir, after writing about their intimidation of Twitter users. Such behaviour is unacceptable in a democracy, RSF says.

MYANMAR: HRC45: Repression of free speech ahead of elections in Myanmar (Statement)

Article 19: ARTICLE 19 welcomes the new Special Rapporteur, and share his concerns regarding the continuing threats to human rights as Myanmar approaches general elections. 

PAKISTAN: A free press is the ‘backbone of democracy’: Justice Qazi Faez Isa

Dawn: Supreme Court judge Justice Qazi Faez Isa, while stressing the importance of media freedom in a society, on Monday said that a “free and robust press is the backbone of a democracy”. 

PAKISTAN: Arrest of MSR condemned: PFUJ concerned over denial of freedom of speech, press freedom

The News International: The Federal Executive Council (FEC) of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) Sunday expressed serious concern over complete denial of press freedom and freedom of speech and expression in the country since the formation of the PTI government led by Prime Minister Imran Khan.

PAKISTAN: Protest against illegal arrest of Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman continues

The News International: Jang, Geo and The News workers continued their protest Sunday against the illegal arrest of Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman outside the Jang Offices and demanded the government to immediately release him.

PHILIPPINES: ABS-CBN Regional’s retrenched staff lead “Pantawid ng Pag-ibig” activities in Visayas

ABS-CBN: They may have spent their last day at work on August 31, but the mission to serve the Filipino continues for the retrenched employees of ABS-CBN Regional.

PHILIPPINES: Philippines accuses Facebook of censoring pro-government content

Dev Discourse: The Philippines accused Facebook on Tuesday of censoring pro-government content which it said was tantamount to curtailing freedom of speech and called for new measures to regulate the social media giant to “level the playing field”. In the Southeast Asian country, President Rodrigo Duterte has been bolstered by establishing a powerful support base on social media platforms like Facebook, a factor that was instrumental in his election victory in 2016.

SINGAPORE: Why is Singapore falling behind in press freedom?

DW: Police in Singapore are investigating the New Naratif media outlet, founded by academic and athlete PJ Thum, for publishing unauthorized paid advertisements on Facebook during the July 2020 election campaign.

TAIWAN: Central News Agency to create online platform promoting Taiwan

Taiwan News: Service aimed at introducing Taiwan’s many facets from official point of view.

THAILAND: Govt taking legal action against major social media providers

The Bangkok Post: Protest posts on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube targetted

REGIONAL: Asia Leads in Press Freedom Breaches Tied to Pandemic Reporting

VOA News: Asian governments are doing more to harass and arrest journalists reporting on the coronavirus pandemic and to keep accurate news of the crisis from reaching their populations than those in any other region, press advocates say. 

AUSTRALIA: ABC flies the flag for Australia at International Emmy Awards

ABC: The ABC has scored Australia’s only nominations for the 2020 International Emmy Awards, which celebrate the world’s best screen content and storytellers.

AUSTRALIA: ABC producers mentor emerging filmmakers to create Lockdown Stories about the impact of COVID-19 on young Australians

ABC News: In Lockdown Stories, young filmmakers document their experience of coronavirus restrictions.

AUSTRALIA: Judge orders clarity in cases against media for Pell contempt trial

Sydney Morning Herald: Prosecutors pursuing media companies for contempt of court over the reporting of George Pell’s conviction on sexual abuse charges have been told by a judge to clearly specify their cases against each of the 30 news outlets and journalists.

AUSTRALIA: Melbourne flocks to 3AW, ABC during COVID-19 lockdown

Sydney Morning Herald: Melbourne’s radio listeners have flocked to news, current affairs and talkback during the city’s unprecedented lockdown.

AUSTRALIA & CHINA: Australian journalists forced to flee China warn political situation in country is worst since 1970s

The Guardian: Increasing CPP control in China and a more hawkish approach from Canberra suggests the strained relationship is here to stay.

NEW ZEALAND: How misinformation endangers us

Newsroom: Six months after New Zealand first went into lockdown and a spate of arson attacks on cell towers began, we now have a better idea than ever before of how misinformation works and how it threatens us, Marc Daalder reports.

NEW ZEALAND: NZ On Air announces funding support for local producers working with emerging artists (Press Release)

NZ On Air: NZ On Air is pleased to announce a new funding initiative to support the development of new songs from emerging artists in collaboration with Aotearoa’s music producers. 

NEW ZEALAND: World News Day: Why Stuff measures success by trust not clicks (Opinion)

Stuff: There is no more valuable currency for journalism than public trust. And yet, trust in the media has never before been under such direct, targeted and sustained attack. Today, as we here at Stuff celebrate World News Day, our attention is directed at building public trust and recognition of the important role journalism plays in a democratic society.

REGIONAL: Pacific television training initiative boosts region’s broadcasters

Asia Pacific Report: Television New Zealand and Pacific Cooperation Broadcasting Limited (PCBL) have launched a new training programme to help broadcasters across the region deliver a premium news product to their audiences.

AZERBAIJAN: Nagorno-Karabakh: Information war and competing media narratives

Al Jazeera: While international media focuses on the fighting, it is a conflict largely seen and read through official tweets, Facebook posts and emails.

BELARUS: Belarus: Joint Statement by Media Freedom Coalition on the detention of journalists (Statement)

Gov.uk: The Media Freedom Coalition’s Executive Group have issued a statement on the Belarus elections.

BELARUS: EFJ demands release of 15 detained journalists in Belarus

EFJ: On Saturday and Sunday in Belarus, 15 journalists were arrested for covering protests against the presidential inauguration, electoral fraud and violence. Most of these journalists have been released, but 15 journalists are still in prison. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) demands their release.

BELGIUM: Why does Radio 2 have regional editorial offices? (Dutch)

VRT NWS: Radio 2 is the only radio station in Flanders that has five regional editorial offices. The radio network literally zooms in on local events and activities from the front row. For example, Radio 2 knows better than anyone else what is going on among the Flemish and the radio station can fulfill its role as a loyal partner.

BULGARIA: Police violence and press restrictions raise red flags in Bulgaria (Statement)

IFEX: Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) partners wrote to Bulgarian leaders to condemn the recent police violence and intimidation against journalists reporting on anti-government protests.

DENMARK: Cases of harassment in the media industry spark #MeToo movement in Denmark


ESTONIA: Olukorrast riigis: Reitelmann unclear on ERR role

ERR News: Conservative People’s Party MP Urmas Reitelmann who is going after public broadcaster ERR fails to understand that a public law media channel upholds the primary role of media to be independent as opposed to functioning as a department of a state institution, host Andrus Karnau said on the “Olukorrast riigis” radio show.

FINLAND: The new Yle Kielikoulu – Yle Språkskolan service helps you learn Finnish and Swedish (Press release)

Yle: The Yle Kielikoulu – Yle Språkskolan service enables you to study a language by following genuine media content. The service produces translations in dictionary format for Yle’s subtitled programmes. Yle Kielikoulu – Yle Språkskolan is aimed at immigrants and other language learners who know at least a little Finnish or Swedish.

FRANCE: As police investigate fresh attack amid Charlie Hebdo trial, French media unify around free expression

CPJ: The knifings of two employees of a French TV production company outside the former Charlie Hebdo office on Friday, which occurred as a high-profile trial on the 2015 attacks on the newspaper was underway, was a stark reminder that threats to journalists have not disappeared in the five years since the deadly assault.

FRANCE: Yet another attack on press freedom in France? Paris reels from stabbing (Watch)

France24: We take a look at online reactions to the stabbing in Paris that left two journalists badly injured. The attack in Paris’s 11th district seems symbolic to many, taking place as it did outside Charlie Hebdo’s former offices, and as alleged accomplices in the 2015 terrorist attack stand trial.

GEORGIA: New director general elected for Georgian Public Broadcaster

Agenda: An eight-member board of governors has elected Tinatin Berdzenishvili the new director general of the Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB), the country’s state-funded television network.

HUNGARY: Down But Not Out: Hungary’s Journalists React to Shrinking Freedoms 

VOA News: Significant changes to Hungary’s media sector over the summer could have a lasting impact on the country’s media freedom and work to strengthen Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s tight grip on the independent press. 

HUNGARY: In Hungary a government rattled by the pandemic finds new ways to suppress independent media

IPI: Dark clouds form after Index closure and blocked license renewal of Klubrádió.

MALTA: The spinning machine at PBS (Opinion)

Times of Malta: Malta’s national station has become a travesty of bias

NETHERLANDS: Public pitch NPO and MAX: 3,530 ideas (Press Release – Dutch)

NPO: The audience pitch ‘Your idea on TV’ by NPO and Omroep MAX yielded a total of 3,530 ideas. The submission deadline closed last Sunday.

SPAIN: Rosa María Mateo demands stable funding for RTVE and the renewal of the Framework Mandate in the Senate (Press Release – Spanish)

RTVE: The sole provisional administrator of RTVE, Rosa María Mateo, has demanded stable financing for the Corporation this Friday in the Senate  that guarantees its independence “because a public company that does not have the minimum necessary budget and that is always subject to fluctuations, hardly will be able to make a project for the future.”

SWEDEN: An algorithm for empowering public service news (Blog)

LSE: How can we produce more relevant news stories and at the same time promote the values of outstanding public service journalism? This is the key question facing Swedish Radio (SR) in constructing its new editorial algorithm. In this article, Olle Zachrison, Head of Digital News Development, explains how the system is empowering local editors across the country. 

SWEDEN: Competence is always crucial when Sveriges Radio recruits (Press Release – Swedish)

Sveriges Radio: It is competence that is crucial when Sveriges Radio recruits, regardless of the position in question. The best person should always get the job. Cilla Benkö, Björn Löfdahl and Carolina Wikström write this in a debate article to clarify and correct misunderstandings about Sveriges Radio’s recruitment work.

SWEDEN: Journalistic challenges in important journalism about covert violence (Blog – Swedish)

SVT: Reporting abuse is one of the more complicated aspects of journalism. The judiciary is challenged by the difficulties of presenting evidence, journalism struggles with issues related to integrity. Right now we are broadcasting two documentary series that expose structural crime in the form of physical, sexual and psychological abuse. The series are completely different in their character and in their focus, but have in common that they reveal major, hidden societal problems.

SWEDEN: My small town – about how the local big city is covered by the media (Listen – Swedish)

Sveriges Radio: Last week, the latest #srfrukosten was broadcast live, which was about how the media handles reporting of the big cities’ surrounding areas. Are important local issues at risk of disappearing in the noise from national news of national interest? Now it is available to listen to also via the Swedish Radio blog.

UK: A new set of threats to the BBC — internal and external — challenges its role as anchor of U.K. media

Nieman Lab: The BBC functions as a heat sink for polarization — converting potentially dangerous energy into something the system can more easily deal with. A new group of broadcast competitors and its likely new set of bosses see it differently.

UK: Andrew Neil launches 24-hour news channel to rival BBC and Sky

The Guardian: GB News aimed at those who feel ‘underserved and unheard’, says veteran broadcaster

UK: No 10 told Charles Moore appointment could put BBC’s independence at risk

The Guardian: Corporation veterans issue their warnings after reports former Telegraph editor in line to be next chairman.

UKRAINE: Ukrainian journalists threatened with gun, police in Kyiv refuse to intervene 

CPJ: Kyiv police should thoroughly investigate a gun threat against cameraman Yegor Serdiuk and reporter Anastasiya Bereziy and determine why police officers at the scene failed to protect the reporters, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. 

REGIONAL: Governments Continue to Undermine Right to Information Under Cover of COVID-19 

Balkan Insight: The coronavirus pandemic has had a chilling effect on people’s right to information in Central and Southeast Europe, with many countries adopting legal measures which temporarily altered or even suspended obligations regarding the public’s right to information. Thankfully, many of these measures have since lapsed with the end of the states of emergency and lockdowns, though there are other pieces of legislation in the works that could hinder people’s right to information.

REGIONAL: Urgent call to secure financial support for journalism and media literacy in EU budget (Letter)

EFJ: The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) together with 16 press freedom, journalists, media literacy and media development organisations sent a letter to the German presidency of the Council of the European Union in light of the ongoing discussion on the EU budget and the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021-2027. The MMF covers the Creative Europe budget which includes support for independent media and journalism. The coalition likewise wrote to the European Parliament’s Budget Commission and to EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn responsible for Budget and Administration. 

ARGENTINA: FOPEA expresses its repudiation and concern over the arrest of journalist Franco Cervera from San Francisco, Córdoba (Spanish)

FOPEA: The Argentine Journalism Forum (FOPEA) expresses its repudiation and concern over the arrest of journalist Franco Cervera from FM 102.5 Radio Estación, from San Francisco, Córdoba. This Monday, the 21st, he was arrested while doing a journalistic coverage in front of the Border Police Station, Santa Fé, where a group of neighbors requested the release of a person.

BRAZIL: Researcher investigates transparency in Brazilian journalism (Portuguese) 

FENAJ: Do journalists value transparency? Do they strive to appear transparent? These are some of the questions that Professor Rogério Christofoletti wants to answer in a research he is doing about transparency in Brazilian journalism. 

COLOMBIA: Colombian Journalists Face Inquiry for Reporting on Assault Allegations

Havana Times: Colombian authorities should not pursue criminal defamation charges against journalists Catalina Ruiz-Navarro and Matilde de los Milagros Londoño, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. In early September, the Colombian attorney general’s office ordered freelance journalists Ruiz-Navarro and Londoño to appear for questioning on September 14 in response to a criminal defamation complaint against them, according to Ruiz-Navarro, who spoke to CPJ via messaging app.

EL SALVADOR: El Salvador’s Hipster President Is Attacking the Media

VICE: The environment for investigative outlets in the Central American nation is dire. Journalists who’ve written critically about the president face criminal investigations and threats from government officials.

EL SALVADOR: El Salvador: Journalists demand that hostilities to the press stop (Spanish)

IFJ: The International Federation of Journalists (FIP) supports the statement that its affiliate the National Association of Journalists of El Salvador (APES) published last Saturday to demand an end to the attacks against journalists in the country.

GUATEMALA: Indigenous journalist Anastasia Mejía arrested in central Guatemala

CPJ: Guatemalan authorities should immediately release radio journalist Anastasia Mejía, drop the charges against her, and guarantee that journalists can report freely without persecution, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. 

GUYANA: State media (Opinion)

Stabroek News: Minister Kwame McCoy who holds responsibility for Public Affairs within the Office of the Prime Minister told Stabroek News in an interview that the government could see no immediate reason for disbanding any section of the state media.  As it is the 2020 Budget has allocated more than half a billion dollars to boost state media capacities.

HAITI: Haiti / Justice: Journalists attacked at the Court of Auditors, Guy Delva of SOS journalist offended (French)

Haiti Press Network: The journalist SOS association, headed by Joseph Guyler C. Delva, condemns the attacks on Wednesday against several journalists who were covering the visit of the Minister of Public Works to the Superior Court of Accounts and Administrative Disputes. Several journalists suffered physical and verbal assaults, they were forced to erase the memory of their cameras and “sequestered” in one of the offices of the administrative court, reports Guy Delva.

HAITI: SOS-Journalists: Hope after the arrest of one of the alleged killers of Vladjimir Legagneur (French)

ICI Haiti: SOS Journalists welcomes with hope and optimism the announcement of the arrest of one of the alleged murderers of photojournalist Vladjimir Legagneur, torn from the affection of his relatives and his colleagues.

HONDURAS: Police attack and prevent the work of journalists in La Ceiba (Spanish) 

C-Libre: While exercising their informative work, members of the National Police obstructed their work and attacked journalists Wilmer Montoya (Channel 6) and Fernando Lanza (CHTV), this Sunday, September, inside the police station in the municipality of La Ceiba, department of Atlántida.

MEXICO: Federal government will compete with commercial TV networks (Spanish) 

El Sol de México: The plan, at the end of the six-year term, is for public television to reach 90 percent of the national territory

NICARAGUA: Dictatorship presents a bill that seeks to criminalise publications on social networks and the media  (Spanish) 

La Prensa: The Ortega group of the National Assembly proposed a Special Cybercrime Law with which it intends to criminalise publications on social networks and the media as crimes against “state security”, with penalties ranging from one to eight years in jail. 

NICARAGUA: Nicaraguan ruling party legislators propose law requiring some media outlets, journalists to register as “foreign agents” 

CPJ: The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on the Nicaraguan congress to reject a proposed law that would force media outlets and journalists to register as “foreign agents” if they receive funding or payments from abroad.

PERU: Investigative journalist Paola Ugaz faces criminal defamation suit in Peru

CPJ: The Committee to Protect Journalists is calling for Peruvian authorities to stop the campaign of legal harassment against journalist Paola Ugaz and take steps to reform the country’s criminal defamation laws. 

TRINIDAD: Changing fortunes of media in TT

Trinidad and Tobago Newsday: OVER the past ten to 15 years, several newspapers with large readerships across the globe have closed due to low advertising and sales. TT too has been affected, with all three daily newspapers laying off workers in the last five years.

IRAN: Iranian bill aims to reinforce “digital wall” and online censorship

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on the Iranian authorities to withdraw a draconian bill that would place social media under military control. Iran must respect its international obligations, RSF says.

IRAQ: Iraq’s Kurdish region is not a model for free speech (Opinion) 

Al Jazeera: The continuing crackdown on press freedom in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq is threatening its democratic future.

IRAQ: Journalist arrested in Sulaimani after complaint filed by Iraqi President’s office

Kurdistan 24: In response to a defamation complaint issued by the office of Iraqi President Barham Salih, police in the Kurdistan Region’s city of Sulaimani arrested writer and journalist Bahroz Jaafer on Tuesday. 

PALESTINE: Palestinian journalist feared kidnapped in Turkey 

Jerusalem Post: The Palestinian Journalists Syndicate called on the Turkish authorities to reveal the fate of the journalist Ahmad Al-Astal, who reportedly disappeared six days ago. 

SYRIA: RSF briefs Human Rights Council about violations of journalists’ rights in Syria

RSF: During a UN Human Rights Council debate yesterday in the presence of the Commission of Inquiry on Syria, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemned the many violations of Syrian journalists’ rights and the government’s tight control on news and information, and called for the protection of Syrian journalists and for combatting impunity.

TURKEY: HRC45: Repression of free speech in Turkey amid UPR adoption (Statement)

Article 19: While we therefore welcome Turkey’s acceptance of a number of recommendations on safeguarding freedom of expression, Turkey’s response to its UPR, as well as its continued efforts to suppress free expression since its review, reinforces our serious doubts over its commitment to fulfilling its human rights obligations.

TURKEY: Pro-opposition TV channel suspended for 5 days: report 

SCF: Halk TV, one of the few television stations in Turkey that is critical of the government, has been slapped with a five-day broadcasting ban over an anchor’s criticism of Turkish foreign policy, Turkish Minute reported on Monday. 

TURKEY: Turkey prepares second indictment of six Khashoggi murder suspects – media

Reuters: Turkish prosecutors have prepared a second indictment in connection with the 2018 murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul, naming six new Saudi nationals as suspects, broadcaster CNN Turk and other media said on Monday.

REGIONAL: Women in the Middle East: Lina Attalah, Waad el Kateab ‘keep fighting’ 

DW: Syrian filmmaker Waad al-Kateab and Egyptian journalist Lina Attalah have been dubbed two of the world’s most influential people. In a region that actively opposes their work, they have fought to set the record straight.

CANADA: As journalism goes, so goes democracy (Opinion) 

MENAFN: When The Canadian Journalism Foundation launched WorldNewsDay.org three years ago, it was clear that amid full-scale assaults on the integrity of journalism, there were two important groups of voices who best tell the story of journalism – the journalists, and more importantly, our audiences.

CANADA: CBC/Radio-Canada partners with the Canadian Journalism Foundation to launch new journalism scholarship program for black people (French)

CBC/Radio-Canada: CBC / Radio-Canada and the Canadian Journalism Foundation (FJC) today announced two new journalism scholarships for black people.

CANADA: In Conversation With Catherine Tait And Barbara Williams (Watch)

Content Canada: Canada’s public broadcaster is playing a pivotal role serving audiences and working with creators and producers in new ways during the COVID-19 pandemic. In this exclusive conversation, Catherine Tait and Barbara Williams open up about CBC/Radio-Canada’s response to the pandemic and other issues facing the Canadian industry, and how they are charting a path forward.

CANADA: Why reporters need to build relationships with the communities we serve (Opinion) 

Toronto.com: It’s about trust. Our relationship with our readers is built on transparency, honesty and integrity. As such, we have launched a trust initiative to tell you who we are and how and why we do what we do. This article is part of that project.

CANADA: World News Day: My career as a journalist is helping reconnect my family — and my community too (Opinion) 

The Star: Being a journalist reporting on Indigenous stories in Canada is difficult to do, but being Indigenous and reporting on your own community is even more difficult – and also extremely rare.

US: Facebook critics, including Ressa, start rival ‘oversight board’ 

Inquirer: A group of prominent Facebook critics, including one of the social network’s early investors and journalist Maria Ressa who is facing jail time in the Philippines, are launching their version of an “oversight board” to rival the company’s own. The group says Facebook is taking too long to set up its oversight panel, which they argue is too limited in its scope and autonomy.

US: How the media handled Wednesday’s Breonna Taylor ruling

Poynter Institute: News leaders sifted through the legal talk and got straight to the point — and the outrage. The banner on CNN immediately following the Breonna Taylor grand jury decision: “No Officers Charged Directly With Breonna Taylor’s Death.” Over on Fox News, it was similar: “No Officers Charged in Death of Breonna Taylor.” And that was the exact same banner on MSNBC.The networks couldn’t hide their anger — not that they should have.

US: In Praise of PBS, a True Democratic Institution (Opinion)

The New York Times: Next month will mark 50 years of television that aims to educate and unite.

US: Journalist April Ehrlich facing criminal charges over reporting on homelessness in Oregon

CPJ: On the morning of September 22, Medford police arrested April Ehrlich, a reporter for National Public Radio affiliate station JPR, while she was reporting on evictions of people who had been living in the city’s downtown park, according to a report by her employer and JPR Executive Director Paul Westhelle, who spoke to CPJ in a phone interview.

US: Lawmakers Criticize Trump Administration Changes at US-funded Media Networks 

VOA News: U.S. lawmakers from both parties said Thursday that they feared the Voice of America and other U.S.-funded broadcasters were at risk of losing credibility with foreign audiences because of actions by new CEO Michael Pack.

US: PBS Programs Earn Three Imagen Awards

PBS: On Thursday, September 24, 2020, the 35th Annual Imagen awards were announced during a virtual ceremony. PBS programs received three awards. The Imagen Awards recognize programs and individuals that advance the positive portrayal and number of Latinos on screen.

US: PBS Selects New Members for Its Board of Directors

PBS: After completing the first FY 2021 meeting of the PBS Board of Directors, PBS President and Chief Executive Officer Paula Kerger announced the results of the recent Board elections.

US: Pennsylvania PBS pilots datacasting’s capabilities for at-home learning (Paywall)

Current: Pennsylvania’s governor recently announced an $8 million grant to Pennsylvania PBS to build datacasting capabilities for the seven-station public TV network to support distance learning in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

US: Press freedom advocates are slamming Trump for glorifying violence against reporters 

Business Insider: Press organizations have urged reporters to keep holding President Donald Trump accountable after he applauded physical aggression toward journalists covering his campaign.

US: Radio Milwaukee lanches podcast about its city’s systemic racism (Paywall)

Current: A new podcast from 88Nine Radio Milwaukee addresses how the racial wealth gap has fed systemic racism and affected every aspect of life in the black community. 

US: The fight over racism, sexism, and other misconduct in public radio isn’t going away

Nieman Lab: Reports of racism, sexism, and further misconduct in public radio have not slowed in the past two weeks. Still, some actions signal that more changes may be around the corner.

US: The second round of the Fact-Checking Innovation Initiative awards five new projects

Poynter Institute: Five projects focused on how technology can improve fact-checking will receive up to $100,000 in grants as part of the second round of the Fact-Checking Innovation Initiative. The winners were chosen from a list of 64 proposals and will split a total of $450,000, made possible by a partnership between the International Fact-Checking Network and Facebook.

COVID-19 Report: Public Service Media: Supporting Society Through Coronavirus (Report)

EBU: In this report, [the European Broadcasting Corporation] captured just some of [its] Members’ many initiatives to provide inspiration to others and highlight exactly why independent, well-funded public service media is as essential now as it has ever been in its nearly 100-year history.

DRM Advanced Radio for All (Watch)

Radio World: Recent virtual event came with a crop of new developments — signaling significant progress.

How has covid-19 affected press freedom around the world?

Journalism.co.uk: There have been 426 press freedom violations worldwide in connection to coronavirus coverage. Journalists in Asia, southern Africa and the Middle East talk about the biggest challenges and what can be done. 

How social media platforms and financial instability are threatening press freedom 

WAN-IFRA: While authoritarian control, persecution, and physical violence continue to pose a massive danger to journalists and their work, social media giants and news organisations’ struggle to achieve financial sustainability also play a significant role in threatening press freedom and the news media ecosystem as a whole.

In an age of fake news, press freedom must be promoted and protected (Opinion)

SCMP: Truth, it is said, is the first casualty of war. The global struggle against Covid-19 is not a conflict of that kind. But it has caused almost a million deaths, devastated economies and dramatically changed our lives. The world cannot afford truth to be a casualty of this crisis. Access to reliable information is critical to understanding the danger, limiting the risk and finding solutions. The role of journalists in seeking truth in this age of fake news and misinformation is critical.

Journalists and fact-checkers must play key role as disinformation is professionalized

IPI: Disinformation is corroding our democracies. There’s an important role for journalism to bring clarity without giving oxygen to bad actors.

Tackling gender inequality through access to information

Article 19: Access to information is fundamental for women’s empowerment. States and other stakeholders should ensure women have full rights and facilities to access information as a mechanism to overcome gender inequality.

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