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

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BURUNDI: Burundi clamps down on international NGOs and rejects human rights criticisms

Global Voices Online: Burundi’s government has repeatedly tried to focus international attention on 2020 elections and draw a line under the fallout from 2015’s election crisis, which led to insecurity and regionally-mediated dialogue with opponents in exile.

ETHIOPIA: Newspapers for rent, but who’s buying in Ethiopia?

DW: In Ethiopia, reliable information can be hard to come by. Confidence in the media is faltering and many people can’t afford to buy a newspaper even if they wanted to.

GHANA: Oppong Nkrumah hints of restructuring at GBC

Ghana Web: Information Minister-designate, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has hinted of a possible change at Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) to make it more competitive.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC may retrench close to 1‚000 staff

Sowetan Live: The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) is to proceed with a Section 189 process and says it may retrench close to 1‚000 employees as part of the restructuring‚ which it estimates should result in a cost saving of about R400m per annum.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC to approach court over irregular appointments, promotions

Eyewitness News: The SABC says it’s committed to enforcing sound governance procedures aimed at re-establishing a culture of accountability in the public broadcaster.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC warns of would-be robbers posing as TV licence agents

SABC News: The SABC says it has not appointed any inspectors or officials to conduct physical inspections of television sets in households.

SOUTH AFRICA: Unions slam SABC over proposed mass retrenchments

Eyewitness News: Unions have criticised the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC)’ s intention to retrench a large section of its workforce as part of the broadcaster’s restructuring strategy.

ZIMBABWE: Zimbabwe battles for media freedom after milestone election

IPI: Journalists in Zimbabwe continue to push for the reform of oppressive media laws and a freer media environment following the violent aftermath of the first general election in the country since Robert Mugabe’s 37-year-long regime ended last year.

REGIONAL: 60 Journalists Across West Africa Resolve to Promote Cross-Border Collaboration on Investigative Journalism

MFWA: Sixty influential journalists across West Africa have adopted a seven-point resolution to promote cross-border collaboration on investigative journalism to tackle issues of good governance, accountability and socioeconomic development in the region.

ARMENIA: OSCE media freedom representative encourages Armenian authorities to bolster media freedom

Public Radio of Armenia: Concluding a two-day visit to Yerevan [24 Oct], the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Harlem Désir, welcomed the commitment of the Acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to strengthen freedom of the media, and encouraged the authorities to undertake additional initiatives.

BANGLADESH: In Bangladesh, TV talk shows are the latest scene of the ruling Awami League’s war on dissent

Scroll: Bangladesh’s television talk shows have become the newest means for the ruling Awami League to catch its critics off-guard. In recent weeks, two prominent critics have landed in hot water for what they “said on talk shows”.

HONG KONG: The erosion of Hong Kong’s free press

CJR: Media veterans in Hong Kong note that press freedoms have been slowly deteriorating since the city’s handover to China in 1997

INDIA:India Listed Yet Again Among World’s Worst for Unsolved Journalist Murders

The Wire: With 18 unsolved cases, India has landed at the 14th position, alongside Somalia, Syria, Iraq, Pakistan and Bangladesh. India also, as it has in the past, refused to participate in UNESCO’s impunity accountability mechanism.

INDIA: #MeToo wave sweeps Indian media, but sanctions are slow in coming

RSF: Immediate concrete responses are now needed to the cases of harassment that have been exposed, both responses from the courts and responses within news organizations.

INDONESIA: Ahead of 2019 Election, Indonesia, Media Battle Fake News

VoA: As the third largest democracy in the world with a young, mobile-first population and low levels of digital literacy, Indonesia is highly susceptible to the spread of fake news and hoaxes.

JAPAN: Most people in Japan get news from commercial TV broadcasts, poll finds

The Japan Times: Commercial television broadcasts are used by 91.8 percent of people in Japan as a news source, a survey by the Japan Press Research Institute, a public interest organization, has found.

MACAU: Macau | TDM signs co-operation agreement with Portuguese public broadcaster RTP

Macau News Agency: Local public broadcaster TDM has signed an updated cooperation agreement with Portuguese public broadcaster Radio and Television of Portugal with a focus on new media

MYANMAR: Myanmar court frees journalists on bail in incitement case

REUTERS: A Myanmar judge on Friday freed on bail three journalists from the country’s largest private newspaper detained on incitement charges after publishing an article that raised questions over government spending.

PAKISTAN: SC reinstates ban on airing of Indian content on TV channels

Dawn: The Supreme Court (SC) on Saturday reinstated a ban on the transmission of Indian content on local television channels, setting aside an earlier verdict by the Lahore High Court (LHC).

SRI LANKA: Concerns for media safety in Sri Lanka amid political crisis

IFJ: Newsrooms of the state-owned media in Sri Lanka were targeted and editorial staff harassed following the controversial appointment of former president Mahinda Rajapaksha as the new Prime Minister by President Maithripala Sirisena on October 26, 2018.

SOUTH KOREA: Should South Korea Be Worried About Media Freedom?

The Diplomat: Despite gains under Moon Jae-in, some more ominous recent signs have advocates worried.

SOUTH KOREA: Public Broadcasters Gather in Seoul for PBI Conference

KBS World Radio: Executives of key public broadcasters from all over the world have gathered in Seoul this week to discuss ways to spearhead challenges the media industry is facing, including the spread of fake news.

GENERAL: Asia-Pacific in October: #MeTooIndia, Mother Mushroom, the disappeared Interpol chief and more

Ifex: #Metoo inspires Indian journalists to speak out against abuse; Vietnamese blogger ‘Mother Mushroom’ is free and sent into exile; Hong Kong’s freedoms under threat; journalists released from detention while media killings continue in the region

AUSTRALIA: ABC tops AACTA Award nominations as new report shows it leads the way in backing Australian drama

ABC Media Room: The ABC has scored an unrivalled 57 AACTA Award nominations across 23 categories, more than any other broadcaster, with Mystery Road and Riot both in line to win 11 of Australia’s top screen prizes.

AUSTRALIA: A massive Facebook group — made up almost entirely of women — is helping to solve a case gripping Australia

NiemanLab: “We couldn’t get the plans, but through the audience we managed to do it. I feel like screaming, hurray, how awesome.”

AUSTRALIA: Digital news readership jumps 4pc in Australia

The Sydney Morning Herald: Digital readership of online news has risen 4 per cent in the last 12 months, with 13.6 million people accessing their content online compared to 12.1 million reading print publications.

AUSTRALIA: JERAA launches new collaborative public interest journalism platform

Pacific Media Network: A new platform for storytelling and public interest journalism, showcasing the best work produced by Australian university journalism programmes, has been launched today.

NEW ZEALAND: Could regional TV be on the comeback? (Audio)

RNZ: A group of broadcasters, headed by Mainland TV in Nelson hope so and have formed a trust to take a proposal to the Government to make some of its reserved Freeview digital TV spectrum available to community TV broadcasters.

NEW ZEALAND: NZME gives up on merger plan (Audio)

RNZ: Media company NZME says it will not appeal the Court of Appeal decision knocking back its bid to merge with rival Stuff.

NEW ZEALAND: RNZ and TVNZ look set to stay ‘just good friends’

Stuff: Wedding bells don’t appear to be in the air for RNZ and Television New Zealand after RNZ’s chief executive Paul Thompson said they “would not be a good fit”.

GENERAL: Hackathon sets its sights on climate change solutions in Asia and the Pacific

WebWire: On the backdrop of the IPCC’s warning for the consequences of a global increase in temperatures of more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, a group of 130 open source activists and students bunkered down to develop mobile apps around UNESCO’s soon to-be-published climate handbook for journalists in Asia and the Pacific.

BULGARIA: Bulgarian media transparency moves a step closer

Broadband TV News: The basis of the draft law is an obligation for media service providers to declare by June 30 each year the funding they received in the previous calendar year. This includes amounts, justification and who it was provided by.

CROATIA: Why Does Croatian Media Give Revisionists a Platform?

Balkan Insight: Amid a growing trend towards historical revisionism in the country, Croatian television and newspapers offer airtime and space to right-wingers who downplay the crimes committed by the World War II fascist Ustasa regime.

DENMARK: Denmark’s DR revamps streaming service

Digital TV Europe: Danish public service broadcaster DR has partnered with video UX specialist Massive to revamp its DRTV streaming service.

DENMARK: Shift in media use points to Danes’ acceptance of new media and adaptability to new ways to access media content

EPRA: The Summary and Discourse Report for 2018 provides an overview of the trends in media consumption in Denmark in 2017 as well as the main findings of special reports and surveys about globalisation of the Danish media industry, social media, streaming and Danish consumers’ media-related spending.

FINLAND: Media companies in campaign for responsible journalism

Yle: Finland’s media watchdog is aiming at making it easier for audiences to identify good professional practice.

ITALY: Google, Sky, RAI and others join the HbbTV Association

Flatpanelshd: Seven companies, including heavyweight Google, have joined the HbbTV Association who is creating a hybrid system for delivery of broadcast and streaming video through Smart TVs and set-top boxes.

ITALY: Rai, Usigrai gives the CDA a copy of the service contract: “There’s been enough stillness”

FNSI: “With today, Rai has been motionless for three months. We went to the board of directors to say: ‘Put this company back in motion following the values ​​of the public broadcasting contract'”. This is the sense of the initiative of the delegation of Rai journalists, “not only from the trade union but also editorial”, who went this morning to viale Mazzini to deliver to the members of the Board a small backpack with a copy of the contract, pen and block notes.

MONTENEGRO: New Media in Montenegro: Berane Municipality set to open a television

Safe Journalists: The intention of the local municipality in Berane to open local television is recently formalized by the Proposal of the decision on the establishment of a local public broadcaster Radio Television of Berane. The Proposal is set to be on a daily agenda of local parliament session already on Monday, November 6th.

SLOVAKIA: RTVS will no longer broadcast a trailer featuring the controversial President Tiso

The Slovak Spectator: The broadcaster was saddened by the criticism from several personalities and journalists.

SPAIN: Facebook activates a new tool in Spain to help users detect ‘fake news’ (Spanish)

infoLibre: It is the so-called ‘context button’ and offers people in the social network more information about the editors and the articles they see on their feed

SPAIN: Spanish viewers’ dissatisfaction with RTVE content grows

Digital TV Europe: A significant tranche of Spanish viewers are not satisfied with the output of public broadcaster RTVE, according to a study by markets regulator the CNMC.

UK: BBC faces existential crisis as young people turn to rivals – Ofcom

The Guardian: Media regulator says BBC is losing viewers and listeners to commercial rivals and online-only offerings

UK: BBC has ‘failed’ on equal pay, MPs on culture select committee say

BBC: The BBC has “failed” in its duty to give staff equal pay and opportunities, and needs “a more transparent” pay structure, a group of MPs has said.

UK: BBC must be more transparent and take more risks

Digital TV Europe: UK public broadcaster the BBC needs to go further in acting transparently, particularly in relation to the potential competitive impact of its activities, according to regulator Ofcom.

UK: Listening to BBC radio digitally has reached its highest proportion to date

BBC: Listening to BBC radio digitally has reached its highest proportion to date, as our digital stations BBC Radio 6 Music and Radio 5 live sports extra continue to grow and BBC podcast downloads reach a record high.

REGIONAL: Western Europeans Under 30 View News Media Less Positively, Rely More on Digital Platforms Than Older Adults

Pew Research Center: Across eight Western European countries, adults ages 18 to 29 are about twice as likely to get news online than from TV. They also tend to be more critical of the news media’s performance and coverage of key issues than older adults.

GENERAL: European licence fees ‘have never been better value’

TVB Europe: A new report from the European Broadcasting Union says on average, the annual licence fee across Europe is 35-euro cents per day – far cheaper than most European pay-TV subscriptions.

GENERAL: Innovation and social purpose: public and philanthropic support for European journalism

EJC: Notes from the Journalism Funders Forum’s Expert Circle in Brussels.

GENERAL: New report sets guidelines for EU effort to tackle disinformation

EFJ: According to the organisations, the main flaw of the EU proposed solutions to the issue lie on the simplistic idea that creating a European fact-checking network could efficiently fight online disinformation.

BRAZIL: Brazil: Journalists Face Intimidation in Campaign

RSF: Scores of reporters have been harassed, threatened, and in some cases physically attacked.

BRAZIL: Brazilian verification initiatives call for electoral court’s collaboration to fight disinformation during elections

Knight Center: Seven Brazilian verification initiatives presented a letter with suggestions of concrete measures that the Superior Electoral Court (TSE, for its initials in Portuguese) can take to help them fight general disinformation related to the country’s elections, whose second round happens on Oct. 28.

BRAZIL: Jair Bolsonaro and the future of Brazil’s media

Aljazeera: A look at ‘fake news’, social media and how a Bolsonaro victory could spell trouble for Brazil’s mainstream media.

BRAZIL: What to know about WhatsApp in Brazil ahead of Sunday’s [27 Oct] election

NiemanLab: “I don’t know where they found my phone number.”

COLOMBIA: Almost 9 million Colombians live in zones of silence, according to new report from FLIP

Knight Center: In Colombia, 585 of 994 municipalities mapped by FLIP are “in silence.” Further, according to Bock, media are concentrated in capital cities.

ECUADOR: 19 journalists from Ecuador and Colombia publish special report on the three murdered Ecuadorian journalists from El Comercio

Knight Center: The Ecuadorian journalists formed the collective after the deaths of the abducted journalists, feeling very unprotected by the State and the traditional media in carrying out their work.

ECUADOR: ‘This border is out of control’: journalists’ murders shock Ecuador

The Guardian: The killings show the dangers of reporting on this isolated part of Latin America on the Colombia-Ecuador frontier

MEXICO: CPJ Safety Advisory: Covering the migrant caravan in Mexico

CPJ: Thousands of migrants that are part of a caravan that departed San Pedro Sula in Honduras for the U.S. on October 13, 2018, are currently in southern Mexico. As the caravan attempts to cross Mexico, the risk increases for any journalists accompanying it.

PARAGUAY: Paraguay: SPP denounces censorship of journalists (Spanish)

IFJ: According to the Union of Journalists of Paraguay (SPP), a group of journalists was censured by municipal officials during the coverage of a demonstration on October 21.

REGIONAL: Mexico, Colombia and Brazil among countries with highest rates of impunity for journalists murders

Knight Center: Mexico, Colombia and Brazil are among the top 14 countries in the world where the murderers of journalists are not punished in court.

SAUDI ARABIA: How Khashoggi’s murder impacts Saudi journalists

CJR: Reporters say that it’s always been challenging to write from inside—or even about—the kingdom, but Khashoggi’s death has globalized awareness of the risk, as reporters living outside Saudi Arabia are now saying they’re more apprehensive than ever about doing their jobs.

SYRIA: Aesthetic journalism: Overcoming censorship and documenting Syrian conflict with a sketchbook

Journalism.co.uk: Award-winning artist and writer Molly Crabapple explains how investigative journalism and visual art complement one another at the Conspiracy Logan Symposium

TURKEY: Germany warns citizens to be careful on social media when in Turkey

DW: Travelers to Turkey might get arrested if they criticize the Erdogan regime on social media, Germany’s foreign ministry said in its official guidelines. Even “liking” an anti-government post could cause serious trouble.

YEMEN: ‘The greatest data project you’ve never heard of’: inside the Yemen Data Project

Journalism.co.uk: The open-source initiative gathers unofficial data on air strikes, pushing for transparency on the Yemen conflict.

CANADA: Minister Rodriguez Shares with the President and Chief Executive Officer of CBC/Radio-Canada the Government’s Vision and Priorities for the National Public Broadcaster (Letter)

Government of Canada

CANADA: Radio-Canada Estrie’s graphic novel documentary in Paris’ subway

CBC/Radio-Canada: Radio-Canada Estrie’s documentary graphic novel, Raif Badawi: Dreaming of Freedom, will soon be getting a big boost in the French capital.

US: A referendum on media experiments? Here’s what news organizations are toying with in the 2018 election cycle

NiemanLab: People from 433 out of 435 congressional districts have signed up for ProPublica’s User Guide to Democracy, reporters from the Philadelphia Inquirer and the New York Times want you to text them, and more.

US: Biased News Media or Biased Readers? An Experiment on Trust

The New York Times: Those who are most distrustful of the news media, and those with more extreme political views, tend to be the most biased readers, research shows.

US: Donald Trump attacks media ‘hostility’ after attempted pipe bombings

The Guardian: US president says reporters have responsibility to set civil tone in speech after political opponents were targeted

US: No mics: CNN reports from cellphones as explosive device forces evacuation

Poynter: CNN’s Poppy Harrow and Jim Sciutto, evacuated from the New York bureau while a bomb squad worked inside, spoke live from their cellphones at times in describing the attempted series of attacks on Democratic leaders and funders and their own shop.

US: What does pubmedia need from its leaders? [Opinion – Paywall]

Current: In recent months, Current has been compelled to report on serious workplace climate crises, including complaints of verbal abuse, negligent management and other professional misconduct. It’s disturbing to learn that so many people — usually those starting careers in public media — have been treated with such disrespect and disregard.

As misinformation crisis deepens, ‘fake news’ becomes less accurate

IJNet: Journalists and media experts have argued that not only has the term been used so broadly as to lose meaning, it can also have negative effects on democratic institutions and the public’s trust of media.

Dumbing down a mistake for public service broadcasters – Roger Mosey [Listen – Opinion]

ABC Radio National

Late to the party on slow journalism(Audio)

RNZ: One of the UK’s top news execs is launching a new news service  – Tortoise – which promises to slow down the frenetic pace of digital-age modern news.  But Delayed Gratification – proudly proclaiming to be “last with the news” – has a head start on “slow journalism”.

Media literacy: what are the challenges and how can we move towards a solution?

LSE Media Policy: LSE Professor Sonia Livingstone, chair of the LSE Commission on Truth, Trust and Technology, stresses the complexity of the challenges involved in improving media literacy, and the first steps that policy makers should take.

News Impact Summit Cardiff Highlights The Engagement Potential Of Local News

EJO: “Local news organisations remain uniquely situated to identify effective ways to engage with their communities.”

“News you don’t believe”: Audience perspectives on fake news

RISJ: In this RISJ Factsheet by Rasmus Kleis Nielsen and Lucas Graves, we analyse data from 8 focus groups and a survey of online news users to understand audience perspectives on fake news.

Pivot to poverty?

RNZ: The news media made a “pivot to video” partly because social media users couldn’t get enough of it. But Facebook eventually admitted its figures were flaky and now it is being sued by advertisers in the US. Have media companies made a mistake going visual?​

Putting machine learning to work to measure media quality

CIMA: Quality, fact-based news—and trust between citizens and journalists—is essential to helping people make informed decisions about important issues.  But traditional methods to evaluate media content are resource-intensive and time-consuming.

Smart speakers and public service broadcasters

IBC 365: If 2017 was the year that smart speaker hype reached its peak, 2018 may well prove to be the year they will have moved into the mainstream, writes EBU Project Manager Ben Poor.

The Ethics Of 360° Journalism

EJO: Instead of good journalism, most videos rely on excessive emotional involvement, the dramatisation of events, and on top of that, forget about some of the classic rules of what makes good journalism.

The Rise of Digital Authoritarianism: Fake news, data collection and the challenge to democracy

Freedom House: Governments around the world are tightening control over citizens’ data and using claims of “fake news” to suppress dissent, eroding trust in the internet as well as the foundations of democracy.

Visual storytelling on mobile phones

Reuters Institute: Emma-Leena Ovaskainen presents her research – into how news organisations are developing visual storytelling for mobile phones – via a website she developed to explain her research, demonstrate best practice, and provide a wide range of examples, in the most accessible and visual way.

Younger generations are actually better at telling news from opinion than those over age 50

NiemanLab: The kids, it turns out, are alright.

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