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

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ETHIOPIA: Tackling Hate Speech in Ethiopia

HRW: Hate and dangerous speech is a serious and growing problem in Ethiopia, both online and offline. It has contributed to the growing ethnic tensions and conflicts across the country that have created more than 1.4 million new internally displaced people in the first half of 2018 alone.

GHANA: GJA at forefront of fight for right to information law

IFJ: The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has joined a nationwide coalition aimed at securing support for the Right to Information (RTI) Bill in the country’s Parliament.

NIGERIA: CrossCheck launches in Nigeria, with 16 newsrooms working together to fight misinformation

NiemanLab: CrossCheck Nigeria builds on what First Draft and its partners learned about misinformation on WhatsApp from the Comprova project in Brazil.

NIGERIA: Nigeria is the next battleground for election misinformation

Poynter: With elections over in the United States and Brazil, eyes are turning toward misinformation in Nigeria.

SOUTH AFRICA: RSF decries South African politician’s invective against reporters

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) deplores South African opposition politician Julius Malema’s use of threats and insults against journalists and media outlets covering his party’s alleged involvement in an embezzlement scandal, and calls on the authorities to condemn his attempts to intimidate the press.

SOUTH AFRICA:  SABC Board Members Throw in the Towel in Fresh Battle With Govt

Via All Africa: At least two board members of the embattled South African Broadcasting Corporation are understood to have resigned amid allegations of political pressure being brought to bear on the board.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC confirms GCEO has not resigned

SABC News: In a statement released on Tuesday the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) said that it  has noted media reports speculating that three members of the public broadcaster’s board have resigned. The SABC further said that the Presidency is the authority to comment on all board issues.

ZIMBABWE: ZBC live broadcast throttled during commission of inquiry hearings

MISA: Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation’s live television broadcast went offline on two separate occasions while MDC Alliance leaders gave their respective testimonies to the Commission of Inquiry into the 1 August 2018 killings.

GENERAL: Stakeholders Call for a Coordination Mechanism on Safety of Journalists in Africa

AFEX: Representatives from Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in Africa, including the African Freedom of Expression Exchange (AFEX), and government institutions have agreed to establish a coordination mechanism at the continental, regional and national level to promote safety of journalists across Africa.

GENERAL: Study sheds light on scourge of “fake” news in Africa

The Conversation: Concerns about “fake news” have dominated discussions about the relationship between the media and politics in the developed world in recent years.

HONG KONG: Hong Kong broadcaster RTHK in the spotlight as gov’t audit report cites shrinking audience

HKFP: Hong Kong’s public broadcaster Radio Television Hong Kong (RTHK) has come under under scrutiny after a critical report was released by the Audit Commission on Wednesday.

INDIA: Prasar starts manpower audit to ‘trim’ broadcaster

The Times of India: The “comprehensive manpower audit” of Doordarshan and All India Radio is being conducted in line with the recommendations of the Sam Pitroda-led expert committee on Prasar Bharati which gave its recommendations to the government in January 2014.

MALAYSIA: Mahathir’s free speech promise prompts media to spread its wings

Nikkei Asian Review: As critical coverage builds, will former ‘enemy’ of journalists set a positive example?

MALAYSIA: UN rights review must accelerate progress on human rights reforms

Article 19: On 8 November, as part of its third cycle review under the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) – a mechanism of the UN Human Rights Council (UN HRC) – 111 UN Member States made statements and provided 268 recommendations to the Malaysian government concerning the human rights situation in the country.

MYANMAR: Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo win Journalist of the Year at Foreign Press Association Media Awards


JAPAN: NHK, other TV stations begin broadcasting 4K, 8K ultra-high-definition programs

The Japan Times: 4K contents were offered on 17 channels, with NHK initially being the only broadcaster to run 8K programs.

PAKISTAN: Media facing extreme suffocation: CPNE

Dawn: The Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) has expressed deep concern over the condition of freedom of the press in the country, saying the media is undergoing a phase of extreme suffocation and unnecessary restrictions.

PAKISTAN: Pakistan seeks Facebook’s cooperation to counter hate speech, boost e-commerce

Geo: Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry on Monday sought Facebook cooperation to counter hate speech and boost e-commerce in Pakistan.

PHILIPPINES: Maria Ressa, Rappler formally indicted by the Philippines on tax evasion charges

CNN: Philippines news website Rappler and its chief executive have been indicted on tax evasion charges, the latest in a case that free speech and civil liberties advocates have warned is part of a wider crackdown on dissent by President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration.

PHILIPPINES: Philippines journalist Maria Ressa vows to challenge tax fraud charges after arrest

The Guardian: Editor of independent news website Rappler has been released on bail over charges she says are being used to intimidate her

THAILAND: Thai election fight turns to YouTube, Facebook after campaign ban

The Straits Times: The battle to win over millions of first-time and undecided Thai voters is now increasingly being fought online as the military-run government bans campaigning ahead of a general election expected next year.

AUSTRALIA: ABC chief financial officer Louise Higgins resigns

ABC News: Ms Higgins will leave her post in February next year.

AUSTRALIA: ABC inquiry told Michelle Guthrie stayed silent on political interference until 11th hour

The Guardian: ABC board members say they didn’t hear Guthrie complain of political interference by Justin Milne until eve of her dismissal.

AUSTRALIA: Proposed encryption bill threat to journalism in Australia

IFJ: The draft bill proposes three fundamental things: create obligations for what organizations must do to assist law enforcement; create warrants to allow law enforcement to seize information directly from a device; and allow law enforcement to access more data through current warrants.

AUSTRALIA: Sacked ABC boss Michelle Guthrie was seen as arrogant by colleagues, inquiry told

The Guardian: In a submission to a Senate hearing into political interference, ex-chair Justin Milne says survey showed she had to be removed

FIJI: Fiji MP calls on media to be more professional

RNZ: A new Opposition MP in Fiji has spoken passionately about the need for local media outlets to be professional.

NEW ZEALAND: Billboard advertiser proposes merger with MediaWorks

RNZ: An Australasian outdoor media company is proposing to merge its New Zealand business with MediaWorks and take a major share in the company.

NEW ZEALAND: Koro Vaka’uta appointed as RNZ Pacific’s News Editor

RNZ: He’s RNZ Pacific’s fourth news editor, since the station started as RNZ International in 1990, and is the first Pacific person to be appointed in the role.

GENERAL: Media freedom in Pacific a growing challenge, says journalism academic

Asia Pacific Report: Pacific media freedom and ignorance of Pacific issues by mainstream media in New Zealand are growing challenges for the region, says a journalism academic

GENERAL: A call for media to boost capacity building in climate reporting

Relief Web: Regional journalists have been reminded that they play vital roles in keeping the public well informed with accurate, timely and appropriate weather information as the Pacific island countries cross the threshold of what is frequently known as the cyclone season.

BELGIUM: Free-to-air terrestrial TV ends in Flanders

a516digital: Flemish broadcaster becomes first public broadcaster in Europe to ditch its own terrestrial TV service.

FRANCE: Journalists harassed and assaulted at Yellow Vest protests across France

CJR: From interfering with live broadcasts, spitting on reporters, and calling them offensive names to at least one case of serious violence, these incidents have brought to light what Reporters Without Borders called, in a statement, “a worrisome increase in mistrust of the media.

HUNGARY: Hungary: new pro-government media conglomerate threatens pluralism

IFJ: The owners of a majority of Hungary’s pro-government media outlets said Wednesday they are donating their companies to a foundation, the “Central European Press and Media Foundation”.

HUNGARY: Media freedom in Hungary is no more

ECPMF: In an unprecedented concerted action pro-Orbán media owners ‘donated’ their news channels, internet news portals, tabloids and sports newspapers, several radio stations, numerous magazines and all of Hungary’s county newspapers, to a newly formed media conglomerate equipped with immense resources.

ISLE OF MAN: PSB has to be ‘more than Government media arm’

Manx Radio: PMA wants public views to be considered.

ITALY: Increasing attacks against status of journalists


MALTA: One year after arrests of murder suspects, international NGOs condemn continued lack of justice for Daphne Caruana Galizia

RSF: Nine international freedom of expression, press freedom, and professional journalists’ organisations condemn the lack of justice for the assassination of investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia a full year after three arrests were made in connection with the case.

MONTENEGRO: EP on Montenegro: A leader in integration with a worrying state in media

SafeJournalists.net: European Parliament rapporteur for Montenegro Charles Tanok said that the biggest challenge for Montenegro is exactly in the area of media freedom and stated that the European Commission’s reports have not been showing progress in this area for 3 years.

NETHERLANDS: How Dutch Public Broadcaster Cleaned Up Ad Sales: Ster’s Volmer

Beet.TV: With the changes, smaller advertisers now have a self-serve online ad platform where they can buy linear TV and radio ads in the Netherlands. The group has lost some of the bigger brands, but gained on the small end.

POLAND: US ambassador scolds Polish officials over claims journalists staged neo-Nazi event

The Guardian: Georgette Mosbacher sparks row after accusing officials of attempting to intimidate journalists from US-owned broadcaster.

SPAIN: HbbTV-based “Netflix rival” debuts in Spain

Broadband TV News: Spain’s three leading broadcasters RTVE, Atresmedia and Mediasat have joined forces to launch a rival to Netflix and other pay services.

UK: 35 prototypes, one year, and lots learned: The BBC puts its mobile storytelling plan in action

NiemanLab: In the BBC’s final two experimental rounds, the R&D team focused on 1) tweaking the stories based on each reader’s information needs and 2) breaking down the news into more digestible bits.

UK: Facebook will try not requiring media outlets to register as political advertisers (at least in the UK)

NiemanLab: “Hi there, @facebook. This is not political content. This is journalistic content that deals with policy. There’s a difference.”

UK: Ofcom: UK PSBs should pool content on a single digital platform

Digital TV Europe: Ofcom chief executive Sharon White has called on the UK public service broadcasters (PSBs) to launch a single digital platform, urging the BBC to take a lead on forming the required partnerships.

GENERAL: Council of Europe debates “quality journalism” and safety of journalists

EFJ: Meeting in Strasbourg on 27-30 November, the Council of Europe Steering Committee on Media and Information Society (CDMSI) went through the details of a draft “Declaration on the financial sustainability of quality journalism in the digital age”.

BRAZIL: Almost a third of Brazilian cities are in danger of becoming news deserts, according to new survey

Knight Center: At least 30 percent of Brazilian municipalities run the risk of becoming “news deserts,” areas without local news coverage. These locations, mapped by the Atlas da Notícia (News Atlas) survey, have only one or two journalistic outlets and are home to 34 million people.

BRAZIL: Brazilian findings: more children read online news

Global Kids Online: The new survey explores for the first time children’s civic participation discovering that over 1 in 10 children use the internet to discuss politics and problems in their city or country.

BRAZIL: Brazilian crowdfunding platform Catarse creates fund for journalistic projects and wants to foster community of support

Knight Center: A crowdfunding platform that has become one of the most successful in Brazil with projects ranging from comics and board games to films, music albums and theater shows is creating a project dedicated solely to independent journalism.

BRAZIL: What WhatsApp “API Access” Meant for Comprova

First Draft via Medium: The collaborative journalism project was the first to have special access to one of Brazil’s most popular apps

NICARAGUA: Government harassment against independent journalists grows in Nicaragua

Knight Center: In recent days, at least seven independent journalists in Nicaragua reported suffering death threats, persecution and harassment from paramilitaries, invasions of their property and arbitrary arrests and detentions.

IRAN: SPECIAL REPORT-How Iran spreads disinformation around the world

Reuters Africa

TURKEY: Turkish court upheld prison sentences for 5 journalists


TURKEY: Turkish media search for sustainable business models

IPI: Top Turkish journalists discuss future of independent media at IPI Berlin conference

CANADA: Canada’s new subsidies for news will warp the market and hurt innovation — unless they’re done right (Opinion)

NiemanLab: “Necessity breeds innovation, and the government’s intervention removes that necessity for Canadian journalism.”

CANADA: CBC/Radio-Canada isn’t undercutting journalism in Canada, it’s helping to ensure it survives, for Canadians

CBC/Radio-Canada: Last week, while Postmedia’s CEO was advising that, “everyone in journalism should be doing a victory lap around their building right now,” National Post reporter Tristin Hopper was responding to the Government’s support for media organizations by blaming CBC.

CANADA: Supreme Court decision on Vice Media a major ‘setback’ for investigative reporting in Canada: experts

Global News: The Supreme Court of Canada’s decision to compel a Vice Media reporter to hand over material about an accused terrorist will have a damaging effect on investigative reporting across the country and weaken Canadian democracy, say experts and press freedom advocates.

US: America prefers to watch its news on TV

Poynter: Why is that? Convenience? It’s not hard to turn on a TV and let it roll. Familiarity? There are only a handful of channels to remember. Habit?

US: New Ready To Learn grants will center on ‘community collaboratives’

Current: Fourteen public television stations will each get $175,000 Ready To Learn grants from the U.S. Department of Education to work with local organizations on early-childhood learning.

US: TV stations are getting more data, bigger audiences with end of Nielsen’s paper diaries (Paywall)

Current: After six decades, Nielsen has finally waved goodbye to paper diaries, a move that public TV analysts say will grow stations’ measurable audiences.

US: Voice Of America Vows Independence, As Trump Calls For ‘Worldwide Network’

NPR: President Trump, who has frequently railed against the U.S. news media and reporters, tweeted last week there should be, as he put it, a “Worldwide Network to show the World the way we really are, GREAT!”

2018 has been a dangerous and deadly year for journalists

The Washington Post: By its tally, more professional journalists were killed in connection with their work in the first nine months of 2018 than in all of 2017.

Environmental journalists face threats, violence

IJNet: In both wealthy and developing countries, journalists covering these issues find themselves in the cross-hairs. Most survive, but many undergo severe trauma, with profound effects on their careers.

From covering conflict to founding a nonprofit

IJNet: Journalists are trained to be observers, reporting on events and conflicts but never getting involved. However, reporter Amie Ferris-Rotman and photojournalist Will Wintercross were so impacted by what they saw in the field that they decided to get involved in a new way: starting their own nonprofits.  

Journalism has a focus problem: How to combat Shiny Things Syndrome

NiemanLab: “This is a permanent process of change, but I feel a great desire for resting.”

The Guardian view on Zuckerberg’s Facebook: regulate it as a media firm (Opinion)

The Guardian: As long as social media – unregulated – is allowed to spread prejudice and falsehood, and build a dominant position in advertising, it is a threat to democracy

The Role of Print in the Digital News World (Report)

RISJ: Jayant Sriram argues that while the media must go digital, the printed word will survive. But it must change.  

Why the demise of specialist reporters is a loss for any democracy

The Conversation

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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.

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