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Week 38: What does CENSORSHIP look like?

Press freedom is not absolute. Deutsche Welle notes that “censorship is the suppression of free speech, public communication or other information which may be considered harmful, sensitive, or politically incorrect as determined by governments or other groups or institutions.” But increasingly, censorship is being used as a tool to crush independent journalism and silence dissenting voices. This can be in the form of more direct manoeuvres: the suspension of media houses in Tanzania; programme changes, removals, and cancellations at RTHK; and overly restrictive in-house policies which identify “taboo” or off-limit topics, such as in Brazil. But censorship can also be more indirect, such as legal action in the form of SLAPPs; online harassment against journalists; “fake news” and “foreign interference” laws, such as those in Singapore; the creation of state-controlled regulatory authorities, like that being considered in Pakistan; and economic threats against public media from governments, like in Slovenia. Together, direct and indirect censorship create an atmosphere of fear and uncertainty for journalists to work in. They drive self-censorship, limit editorial independence and holding power to account. Ultimately, censorship reshapes the information that reaches citizens – all worrying threats to the very notion of informed democracy.

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What we're watching...

Pandora Papers: Journalists examine offshore wealth

Deutsche Welle: DW speaks to Julia Wallace, deputy editor-in-chief of the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, a network of investigative journalists involved in the Pandora Papers research.

What we're listening to...

Today in Short: Media Capture in the EU

IPI Press Freedom Podcast: We often talk about populism and the danger it represents to our freedoms and, in particular, to media freedom. Today in Short we look at the phenomenon of media capture inside the EU… 

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Global Headlines

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ALGERIA: Increasing attacks on press freedom

Article 19: ARTICLE 19 expresses concern about the continuing attacks on journalists and the media in Algeria by various executive, legislative and judicial authorities. Violations have been perpetrated against several journalists since the beginning of the year.

CAMEROON: Media Freedom Coalition Diplomatic Network in Cameroon (Press release)

Gov.uk: The UK and Canada co-hosted the first meeting of the Media Freedom Coalition Diplomatic Network (MFCDN) in Cameroon. The Media Freedom Coalition was formed in July 2019 at the Global Conference for Media Freedom and is a partnership of countries working together to advocate for media freedom and safety of journalists and hold to account those who harm journalists for doing their job.

GHANA: Digital Migration Has Been Beset With Missed Deadlines – Reports

Broadcast Media Africa: The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) member nations signed an agreement in Geneva in 2006 to convert television broadcasting from analogue to digital. The changeover date was set for June 17, 2015, nine years after the agreement was signed. Ghana was one of the agreement’s signatories.

LIBERIA: Liberia Institute of Media Excellence Trains Over 60 Aspiring Journalists, Public Relations Officers

FrontPage Africa: Over 60 aspiring journalists, public relations officers and public speakers have benefited from the Liberia Institute of Media Excellence (LIME) intensive training programs.

NAMIBIA: NBC, Napwu Recognition Agreement Ends

Via All Africa: The Namibian Broadcasting Corporation has ended its recognition agreement with the Namibia Public Workers Union (Napwu), after the union lost its majority support among employees of the public broadcaster.

NIGERIA: Buhari attacks Nigerian media, accuses journalists of ‘reporting irresponsible remarks’ 

Premium Times: President Muhammadu Buhari, whose government has been accused of clamping down on free speech, has accused the Nigerian media of “just reporting irresponsible remarks.”


SABC: The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC)’s Education Genre celebrates 25 years this year. Since its formation in 1996, SABC Education has been instrumental in educating the nation through its programming.

TUNISIA: Tunisia’s new prime minister asked to prioritise safeguards for press freedom

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on Tunisia’s newly appointed prime minister, Najla Bouden, to implement Tunisia’s undertakings as regard journalistic freedom, independence and pluralism, on the basis of Chapter 2 of Tunisia’s constitution and the country’s international obligations.

ZIMBABWE: Access to information key in the fight against Covid-19 pandemic

MISA: This year’s International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI) comes at a time when Zimbabwe, and the world at large, is battling to combat the deadly COVID-19 pandemic which has killed thousands and wrecked the socio-economic wellbeing of nations and their citizens.

REGIONAL: AFEX calls on African Governments to ensure Effective implementation of ATI Laws (media release) 

AFEX: On the occasion of the 2021 International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI), the African Freedom of Expression Exchange (AFEX) commends countries on the continent that have passed Access to Information (ATI) Laws while urging those that have not to do so as a matter of urgency.

AFGHANISTAN: Afghanistan: Taliban Severely Restrict Media

Human Rights Watch: Taliban authorities in Afghanistan have imposed wide-ranging restrictions on media and free speech that are already stifling criticism and dissent, Human Rights Watch said today.

AFGHANISTAN: Culture Ministry Denies Restrictions on Afghan Media

Tolo News: The Ministry of Information and Culture on Saturday denied claims it was imposing restrictions on the media in Afghanistan, saying that all media outlets can continue their activities. “There are small cases that happen in some areas,” said Mawlavi Noor Mohammad Motawakil, a member of the cultural commission of the ministry.

BANGLADESH: Bangladesh authorities order banks to disclose information on 12 journalists’ accounts

CPJ: Bangladesh authorities must immediately drop their investigations into the bank accounts of 12 members of the press and commit to allowing the media to operate freely and independently, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

HONG KONG: Ex-Apple Daily executives face possible sentences after trial moves to High Court

SCMP: Six former Apple Daily executives could be jailed for life if found guilty of breaking the national security law in Hong Kong after prosecutors applied to move the trial to the High Court.

HONG KONG: Hong Kong Journalists Association’s Future in Question

VOA News: For over 50 years, the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) has worked to protect media rights. But now the organization says it is under intense pressure from city officials.

HONG KONG: Hong Kong media outlets barred from media sector’s National Day celebration

HKFP: Chief Executive Carrie Lam attacked unnamed news outlets at the event claiming they “distorted and vilified government messages, undertaking biased reporting, or even fabricating fake news.”

HONG KONG: In full: New guidelines say RTHK must ‘uphold’ constitution, warns staff against contact with foreign gov’ts

HKFP: RTHK has told its staff to avoid contact with foreign governments or political organisations under new editorial guidelines, as the public broadcaster pledges to prevent acts that endanger national security.

INDIA: Press Council of India to Probe Harassment, Intimidation of Journalists in Kashmir

The Wire: The top statutory press body’s decision comes after former chief minister Mehabooba Mufti flagged the issue of repression faced by journalists in Kashmir.

INDIA: Woman-led newsroom in India ‘reframes the conversation’ in new documentary

ICIJ: In India’s male-dominated media scene, where caste still matters and women are afforded few opportunities, an online photo story about a female-led newsroom staffed by lower-caste reporters was all it took to capture the attention of two moviemakers and spark an ambitious five-year film project.

INDONESIA: Radio’s vital role during the pandemic in Indonesia

Asia Radio Today: According to a report by ANTARA news agency, Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication and Informatics (Kominfo) has highlighted the importance of radio’s vital role in providing information on the COVID-19 pandemic to people in addition to being an accurate information distribution medium to tackle hoaxes.

INDONESIA: Ministerial Regulation 5 will exacerbate freedom of expression restrictions

Article 19: Ministerial Regulation 5 is the latest addition to the legal arsenal used by the Indonesian government to crack down on freedom of expression. Rather than addressing restrictions on freedom of expression and access to information online, Ministerial Regulation 5 will exacerbate existing freedom of expression challenges and introduce more severe restrictions on internet freedom. 

KAZAKHSTAN: Kazakhstan considers new legislation to hinder social media

Global Voices: Kazakhstan’s parliament has passed a bill, “to protect children’s rights,” that will restrict the activity of social media companies, the latest of a number of moves to restrict and control social media activity in the country.

MALAYSIA: Journalist could face arrest for defamation

Article 19: Fourteen organisations call on INTERPOL to clarify its involvement in the arrest warrant issued against British journalist Clare Rewcastle Brown amid fears she may be arrested in Spain following threats by the Malaysian government.

MALDIVES: Maldives legislature considers bill that could force journalists to reveal sources

CPJ: Maldives legislators must reject a provision of the proposed Evidence Bill that would allow courts to compel journalists and media outlets to reveal their sources, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

MYANMAR: Call for bids in Myanmar: Magna Carta Fund 2021 to 2022 (Opportunity)

Gov.uk: The Magna Carta Fund for Human Rights and Democracy (MCFHRD) is the FCDO’s dedicated strategic fund supporting our global human rights and democracy work.

PAKISTAN: Pakistan’s government wants to impose centralised censorship office

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is appalled by the Pakistani government’s new draft media law which, if passed unchanged, would impose a media tribunal able to issue arbitrary decisions with no possibility of appeal by journalists or public.

SINGAPORE: Singapore passes ‘most powerful’ foreign interference law amid fears of ever-shrinking space for dissent

The Washington Post: Singapore’s parliament has passed a law aimed at countering foreign interference that is potentially so powerful rights groups and legal experts worry it could crush public debate in a city-state where authorities are already frequently accused of curbing civil liberties.

SOUTH KOREA: S.Korea’s ruling party retreats on ‘fake news’ law after backlash

Swissinfo: South Korea’s ruling party has backed down on a controversial bill to impose tougher penalties for the publication of false information, after critics at home and abroad labelled it a move to stifle a free press and critical coverage.

THAILAND: Thai PBS delivers the Thai PBS Learning Shelf to the Department of Corrections Inspiring prisons across the country (Press release – Thai)

Thai PBS: Thai PBS launches educational kits for prisons

REGIONAL: Media experts call for promotion of independent media (PMA Event)

The Himalayan Times: Media experts have shared their observations and insights on countering hate speech, and promoting media ethics and safety of journalists during a workshop of South Asian media professionals.

REGIONAL: Will independent media survive in Southeast Asia? (Event)

Rappler: Award-winning documentary “A Thousand Cuts” will be screened for the first time in Southeast Asian countries (Indonesia and Malaysia) outside of the Philippines. […] s part of the joint screening, a regional forum, “Press in Distress: Will independent media survive in Southeast Asia?,” will also take place on October 8, 4 pm Manila time.

AUSTRALIA: Campaigner against anti-semitism and racial violence appointed to SBS board

The Sydney Morning Herald: Long-time campaigner against racial violence Vic Alhadeff is the newest member of the SBS board, with the federal government making the appointment on Monday.

AUSTRALIA: CNN disables Facebook page in Australia after high court defamation decision

The Guardian: CNN has become the first major news organisation to disable its Facebook page in Australia, citing a high court decision which said publishers are legally responsible for comments posted below their stories. 

AUSTRALIA: More public figures expected to turn off Facebook comments after Australian defamation ruling

The Guardian: The Tasmanian premier Peter Gutwein’s decision not to allow comments on some Facebook posts is likely just the beginning of the broader ramifications of a high court decision on liability for third-party comments on social media, according to one defamation law expert.

AUSTRALIA: ICAC [Independent Commission Against Corruption] is not a curse, and probity in government matters. The Australian media would do well to remember that (Opinion) 

The Conversation: Journalists are adept at creating and reflecting public sentiment. It is a reciprocating process: journalistic portrayal creates the sentiment, then the sentiment feeds back into journalistic portrayal. This phenomenon can be seen clearly in the way the resignation of New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian has been reported and commented on.

AUSTRALIA: News Corp Australia tweaks climate targets amid scrutiny of editorial line

Reuters: The Australian arm of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp (NWSA.O) has set new environmental targets, an internal email showed, shoring up employee engagement with climate issues as it prepares an editorial campaign calling for curbs on carbon emissions. 

FIJI: Behind the News: The truth never dies (Opinion)

The Fiji Times: A Government minister recently took a swipe at this newspaper for doing its job. In doing so, she joined a long list of government ministers from this government, and many more ministers from past governments in blaming the press for reporting uncomfortable truths.

FIJI: Fiji Media must be accountable for comments on their social media pages

PINA: Fiji’s Attorney General and Minister for Communications, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum says media organisations should be held responsible for third-party comments on their social media accounts. Speaking in parliament today, Sayed-Khaiyum highlighted an Australian High Court ruling that the media are accountable for their social media platforms.

NEW ZEALAND: Huge journalism jobs boost from public purse

RNZ: The Public Interest Journalism Fund has bankrolled 110 new journalism jobs – the biggest investment yet from this recent government initiative. News media companies welcomed this boost – but critics claim giving the fund $55 million of public money undermines editorial and financial independence. 

NEW ZEALAND: We regulate big oil and big tobacco, it’s time to do the same for big tech (Opinion)

The Spinoff: Google and Facebook have transformed the world, made our lives better and brought enormous challenges. Yet despite their impact on everything from business to the mental health of teenagers, they are less regulated than your local takeaways. 

ALBANIA: Albania’s new media agency: A blow to the country’s free press

Deutsche Welle: Courting controversy at the outset of his third term, Albanian PM Edi Rama has set up a new state agency for media and information, or MIA. Skeptics decry it as a “propaganda ministry.”

AUSTRIA: Struggle for higher ORF fees: Wrabetz and Weißmann want eight percent more (German)

Der Standard: The programme fee would grow from 17.21 to around 18.60 euros per household per month.

CZECH REPUBLIC & HUNGARY: Babis and Orban blacklist critical international journalists

Euractiv: Czech and foreign journalists who reported critically on Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš and his Hungarian counterpart Viktor Orbán were banned from the joint press conference held by the two leaders on Wednesday in Czechia.

DENMARK: DR presents comprehensive plan for digital development (Danish – Press release)

DR: On Monday, DR will present a comprehensive and comprehensive plan for a significant digital development of the entire DR. The clear digital direction is supported by six initiatives that will be developed over the coming years.

ESTONIA: ERR and Telia reach agreement on TV transmission

ERR: Telecoms firm Telia and public broadcaster Eesti Rahvusringääling (ERR) have reached an agreement which will enable the continuation of TV service provision. The news ends several months of impasse, though agreements with the two other major providers, Elisa and STV, are still to be reached.

FINLAND: Welcome to the data user – Yle’s media archive invites researchers and developers to collaborate (Opportunity – Finnish)

Yle: Are you researching issues related to the media or General? Interested in speech recognition research? Could data from Yle’s content be useful in your studies or research project?

FRANCE: European Sustainable Development Week on Radio France (French – 24 September)

Radio France: As part of the European Sustainable Development Week from September 18 to October 8, 2021, Radio France is committed to raising awareness of climate change.

FRANCE: France Télévisions, TF1 sue Canal+ for unfair competition

Advanced Television: French public service broadcaster France Télévisions and private broadcaster TF1 have taken legal action against Canal+, accusing the pay-TV operator of not observing release windows.

GERMANY: ZDF “heute” family increases acceptance significantly (Press release – German)

ZDF: Thomas Bellut: Counterbalance to filter bubbles in the network.

GERMANY, CZECH REPUBLIC, HUNGARY: ARD protests sharply: TV team in the Czech Republic excluded from press conference (Press release – German)

ARD: ARD correspondent Danko Handrick and his camera team were excluded from the press conference of the Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš and his Hungarian counterpart Viktor Orbán in Usti nad Labem together with several other international media.

GERMANY & RUSSIA: YouTube bans RT’s German channels — lawmakers and activists react

Deutsche Welle: RT’s German YouTube channels have been blocked over alleged COVID-19 misinformation. What does the German government make of the move? And what do other observers think?

ITALY: Italy’s Rai becomes first free-to-air broadcaster to watermark content

IBC 365: Radio Televisione Italiana (RAI), the Italian national public broadcaster, is utilising Nagra’s NexGuard forensic watermarking and Anti-Piracy Services platform to protect its streaming content and related advertising revenues.

MALTA: PBS classified as state-controlled media in new study

The Shift News: A new assessment tool finds that four fifths of the world’s state media lack editorial independence.

NORWAY: Podcast and family show in interaction on NRK (Swedish)

Nordvision: NRK’s entertainment investment will be multimedia with the launch of a podcast that discusses upcoming episodes. This is something new in the Nordic public service media that we have noticed this week.

POLAND: Police Confiscate Journalist’s Computer Equipment

VOA: Police confiscated the computer equipment of a journalist working for a leading newspaper in Poland which has carried out investigations of the country’s right-wing government.

PORTUGAL: RTP’s Nicolau Santos to give opening keynote at Radiodays Europe (Event)

Radioinfo: Nicolau Santos, President of the Portuguese Public Media Service RTP, is the keynote speaker in the opening session at Radiodays Europe (RDE) 2021, which will take place in Lisbon from October 9 to 11.

RUSSIA: Rights groups, media outlet registered as ‘foreign agents’

Deutsche Welle: The Kremlin has placed an independent media agency along with two rights organizations on a register of “foreign agents.”

SLOVENIA: Director of Slovenian Press Agency resigns after year-long fight with authorities

Politico: The director of the Slovenian Press Agency (STA), Bojan Veselinovič, resigned on Thursday morning after rejecting a draft public service agreement by the Slovenian government he described as damaging for the agency.

SLOVENIA: Thank you to everyone who took care of the safety of RTV Slovenia (Statement – Slovenian)

RTV Slovenija: In the public institution RTV Slovenia, we condemn threats to journalists. We announce that we will not allow ourselves to be intimidated and that we will continue to defend the independence of the public media and the freedom of the media.

SLOVENIA: The new President of the Supervisory Board of RTV Slovenia is Janez Čadež (Slovenian)

RTV Slovenija: In the continuation of the 31st session of the Supervisory Board of RTV Slovenia, the majority of members elected Janez Čadež President of the Supervisory Board. The term of office of the Supervisory Board expires in January next year.

SPAIN: Canary TV makes history with the La Palma volcano: a record coverage that highlights its public service (Spanish)

verTele!: Two weeks after the eruption of the Cumbre Vieja volcano in La Palma began, Canary TV continues at the foot of the canyon as the main informative reference on the island. [Its] coverage in all these days has earned him the applause of the public and audience records.

SPAIN: María Escario: “We have to open the windows and explain to people what we do. I’m not the one in internal affairs” (Spanish – Paywall)

El País: The veteran journalist assumes the position of RTVE Hearing Defender.

SWEDEN: Diamant Salihu nominated for Journalist of the Year in Europe 2021 (Swedish)

SVT: Diamant Salihu, reporter for SVT Nyheter, has been nominated for the prestigious European Journalist of the Year 2021 award.

SWEDEN: Sveriges Radio Finska releases new podcast about LGBTQI experiences (Press release – Swedish)

Sveriges Radio: Ihan homo juttu is the Finnish podcast that deals with current LGBTQI issues. Hosts Maiju Ristkari and Laura Hagström share their own experiences and invite guests for conversations about acceptance, identity, the power of the word, LGBTQI terms and the importance of the school world. The four episodes of the podcast series will be published on September 30 in the app Sveriges Radio Play.

UK: Analyst: C4 sale threatens UK production sector

Advanced Television: The UK government has reaffirmed its intention to review the ownership model and remit of Channel 4 (C4), but the proposed privatisation of the publicly-owned broadcaster would significantly impact the UK’s independent production sector, suggests Ampere Analysis’s Neil Anderson.

UK: ​​BBC’s five-year review of the World Service evidences record global reach, increased audience trust and significant value for the UK (press release) 

BBC: The review, set out in the 2016 Agreement with the Secretary of State for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), examines how the BBC World Service has performed in three key areas: growing global reach, achieving quality and impact, and delivering value for the UK audience.

UK: BBC unveils coverage plans for COP26 climate change conference (press release)

BBC: The BBC has today announced extensive coverage plans for the UN’s upcoming climate change conference in Glasgow, bringing audiences to the heart of November’s summit with special programming, news and digital coverage.

UK: Diversity in top media jobs is ‘woeful’, says Ofcom

The Guardian: Recruitment of people of colour and disabled staff into junior roles yet to be replicated at senior level.

UK: The BBC needs to get much better at defending itself (Opinion)

The Guardian: Fearful about impartiality and the future of the TV licence, the corporation’s dramas have become markedly uncontentious.

UK: The BBC’s radical new data plan takes aim at Netflix

Wired: The BBC’s R&D team has built experimental systems that pull in data from Netflix and Spotify. The goal? More personalisation.

UKRAINE: Why journalism in Ukraine is a very risky job (Opinion)

Eu Observer: Nearly 30 years after the fall of communism, Ukraine is struggling to build a free press, due to corrupt oligarchs and Russia.

GENERAL: Call for proposals – Covid fund for journalists’ unions & associations (Opportunity)

EFJ: This call for proposals is launched in the context of an EU-funded Project “TRADE UNIONS FOR A FAIR RECOVERY: Strengthening the role of trade unions in mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 crisis”.

ARGENTINA: In a pandemic we did what we could, now we are going to do what we want (Interview – Spanish)

La Voz: The president of RTA was in Mendoza for the ceremony in which the National Radio affiliate was baptized “Quino”. Regarding the embezzlement of funds in Public TV, [she] said that “there is a judicial investigation into the people involved.”

ARGENTINA: The Government made the representatives of the opposition official in the RTA board (Spanish)

Infobae: Cristian Larsen and Carlos Monte had been nominated for Radio y Televisión Argentina Sociedad del Estado by the Bicameral Commission of Congress. The positions were vacant since the beginning of the management of Alberto Fernández.

BRAZIL: Automated profiles account for 20% of attacks on journalists on Twitter in Brazil, study says

LatAm Journalism Review

BRAZIL: Deputy Sâmia Bomfim sends “plenty of evidence” of the EBC’s failure to cover the pandemic to Covid’s CPI (Portuguese)

Brasil 247: Federal Deputy Sâmia Bomfim (PSOL-SP) sent to the rapporteur of the CPI on Genocide, senator Renan Calheiros (MDB-AL), this Friday (1), a set of materials that prove the omission and negligence of Empresa Brasil (EBC) in coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. 

COLOMBIA: The Colombian animated series nominated for the Emmy Kids Awards (Spanish)

Infobae: After knowing the nominees, it is worth highlighting that the only national production on the list is “Petite”, a co-production with Chile that is broadcast by Signal Colombia.

CUBA: Opinion: The subtle brutality of Cuba’s war on press freedom

The Washington Post

GUATEMALA: IAPA rejects daily Guatemalan investigation that denounced corruption (Spanish)

Swissinfo: The Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) rejected this Thursday the order of the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ) of Guatemala to investigate the newspaper elPeriódico for publishing a document on alleged acts of corruption in the office of the Guatemalan attorney general, Consuelo Porras.

NICARAGUA: Nicaraguan Journalists Describe ‘Atmosphere of Fear’

VOA: For journalist Wilih Narvaez, the uncertainty from the risk of arrest or attack is what makes his job difficult in Nicaragua. On the day that he spoke with VOA, authorities had prevented Mauricio Madrigal, one of Narvaez’s colleagues at independent broadcaster Canal 10, from leaving the country. 

PERU: In Peru, ruling party opposes the signing of Chapultepec and Salta declarations for press freedom

LatAm Journalism Review: “[The ruling party] Peru Libre issued a statement on Sunday [Sept. 26] opposing that President Pedro Castillo sign the declarations of Chapultepec and Salta, which guarantee freedom of expression and of the press. On Sept. 9, it was reported that the Peruvian Press Council (CPP) invited the president to sign both commitments.

PERU: Ultra-conservative and anti-vaccine groups threaten journalists in Peru

LatAm Journalism Review: Peruvian journalists from two media outlets are harassed and threatened online by supporters of radical ultra-right and anti-vaccine groups.

URUGUAY: Uruguay to host 2022 World Press Freedom Day Conference

UNESCO: Uruguay will be the next host of the World Press Freedom Day global conference.

REGIONAL: New President Of The CBU Encourages Support For Caribbean Media As COVID-19 Front Line Workers

CBU: The new President of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union, Mrs. Kayleaser Deveaux-Isaacs continues to encourage her colleague media managers in their ongoing support to their personnel as they offer vital service to national efforts to beat back the COVID-19 pandemic in the region.

LEBANON: New Lebanese information minister floats fresh media freedom restrictions 

Arab News: New Lebanese Information Minister George Kordahi reiterated on Monday his desire to restrict press freedoms, saying the media cannot “assault the dignity of politicians.”

PALESTINE: Hateful Network: How online hate speech amongst Palestinians is impacting their digital rights

Via IFEX: Nine out of ten Palestinians were subjected to hate speech on social media platforms on political or gender-based grounds, says a new report by the Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media (7amleh).

SAUDI ARABIA: Still no justice for Khashoggi, three years after his murder

IPI: October 2 marks the third anniversary of the 2018 murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, a heinous act for which justice is still denied. The IPI global network strongly condemns the continued impunity in the case and calls on the international community to hold Saudi Arabia accountable for the murder. 

TURKEY: Media Groups Voice Concern about Turkey’s Planned Social Media Law

VOA News: Social media regulations are expected to be on the agenda for Turkey’s national assembly when it reconvenes in October. Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development (AKP) party is preparing a draft law covering false news and disinformation online.

TURKEY: Violation of women journalists’ rights continues in Turkey

SCF: The violation of women journalists’ rights in Turkey continued in September, according to a monthly report released by the Coalition For Women In Journalism (CFWIJ).

CANADA: Canadian media needs to put a face to climate crisis, Sean Holman says

The National Observer: Climate change is the largest and most impactful story on the globe, yet Canadian media in particular has done an inadequate job in covering the issue, one expert says.

CANADA: Canadian government’s proposed online harms legislation threatens our human rights (Opinion)

CBC News: The Canadian government is considering new rules to regulate how social media platforms moderate potentially harmful user-generated content. Already, the proposed legislation has been criticized by internet scholars — across the political spectrum — as some of the worst in the world.

CANADA: Peter Mansbridge says news media’s biggest threat is a lack of public trust

CBC Radio: With the journalism industry in Canada facing a host of challenges  — declining revenues, disappearing jobs, a lack of newsroom diversity — former CBC chief correspondent Peter Mansbridge says its biggest threat today is a lack of trust. 

CANADA: Radio-Canada marks the first National Truth and Reconciliation Day (Press release – French)

Radio-Canada: Radio-Canada marks the very first National Day of Truth and Reconciliation , this new federal holiday aimed at promoting increased awareness of the tragic reality of residential schools for Indigenous people, by broadcasting special multi-platform programming on Thursday, September 30, 2021.

US: CPB and PBS Partner With 10 Public Media Stations to Support Early Literacy Learning and Critical Thinking Skills

CPB: Stations Each Receive Ready To Learn Initiative Funding to Develop “Learning Neighborhoods” in Local Communities.

US: Federal Funding Update: Congress Passes a CR

Protect My Public Media: Congress approved a Continuing Resolution (CR), a short-term funding measure that keeps the government and its programs, including support for public media, funded at roughly last year’s spending levels through December 3, 2021. The President is expected to sign the CR into law.

US: How NPR can leverage stations’ reporting to help save local journalism (Paywall)

Current: “Enterprising local reports from newsrooms across the country are simply not reflected enough in the NPR’s signature news magazines,” writes former CPB Board member Howard Husock.

US: Local news and media capture: a Q&A with Phil Napoli

CJR: For many years, the term “media capture” was used primarily by economists and political scientists who wanted to understand societies that were Democratic on paper but—in reality—had a captive media under soft control. Political scientist Alina Mungiu-Pippidi described “media capture” as an environment in which news media are controlled “either directly by governments or by vested interests networked with politics.”

US: New ‘NewsHour’ initiative deepens reporting on diverse communities (Paywall)

Current: “The misery from a local perspective continues even after some of the national media has left. But the unique thing with The Communities Initiative is we’re still here. We’re still recording.”

US: Nonprofit outlets dedicated to covering local news and communities of color are on the rise, report finds

Poynter: From 2018 to 2020, 33 new local outlets launched, including 11 in the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the Institute for Nonprofit News.

US: PBS Leads With 14 News & Documentary Emmy® Awards (Press release)

PBS: PBS programs were honored with 14 2021 News & Documentary Emmy® Awardsthe most of any organizationproving that PBS continues to be America’s home for documentaries and one of the most trusted sources for news and public affairs programming.

US: Public Radio Experiments With ‘Urban Alternative’ Format to Reach Younger Listeners

Billboard: The latest round of grants from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting went to stations building a new format that mixes new and classic hip-hop/R&B tracks.

US: SAG-AFTRA and NPR Reach Agreement on Successor Contract Covering 521 Staff Members (Press release)

NPR: National Public Radio and SAG-AFTRA have agreed on a new nationwide contract that includes 2.5% pay raises each year through 2025, provides 20 weeks of paid parental leave, and includes a number of important diversity, equity, and inclusion commitments.

About the Pandora Papers

ICIJ: The inside story on how more than 600 journalists spread across 117 countries and territories, encompassing 150 media organisations, worked together to investigate 2.94 terabytes of leaked documents and financial records, and reveal the “financial secrets of politicians, billionaires and the global elite”. 

#IPIWoCo recap: The future of public service media

IPI: Departing head of Austrian broadcaster ORF shares three keys to protecting public media independence.

Broadcasters and international organizations call for press safety (Dutch)

VRT: The public broadcasters VRT, RTBF and CBC/Radio-Canada signed the Brussels Declaration together with a wide range of international organizations including the BBC, EBU and France Télévisions.

I am a public service journalist: what can AI do for me?

Journalism.co.uk: In this special series that focuses on journalism rather than algorithms, we look at how 10 European public service broadcasters overcome language barriers to share stories across the continent.

Interpreting Data: Tips to Make Sure You Know How to Read the Numbers

GIJN: When using data for investigative stories, it is important to learn how to obtain and clean the information. But it is also vital that you interpret your findings correctly and extract the right conclusions from the numbers, filters, and spreadsheets. If you do the math correctly but fail to read the answers properly, you may end up misleading your audience.

‘It is becoming unbearable:’ Journalists say they have become ‘scapegoats’ at anti-vaccine protests

CPJ: Journalists covering demonstrations against COVID-19 countermeasures have been called “terrorists,” “pedophiles,” “murderers,” and “scumbags.” Protesters have harassed and assaulted members of the press, and told them that “the nooses are ready.”

Journalism is ‘main vaccine against disinformation’ – Why independence of the media matters

News24: This independence of the media to report news unhindered from pressure and interest groups, also from politicians and public officials failing to fulfill their duty to act on behalf of the population, has been part and parcel of the woes of News24 and many other local media’s journalists, harassed and threatened on a wide variety of topics, lately by conspiracy theorists and anti-vaccination cults. 

Journalists Threatened By Surveillance And Spyware Are Focus Of Monthly List Of ‘10 Most Urgent’ Press Freedom Cases

Forbes: In light of growing reporting revealing the breadth and extent of the use of spyware to surveil journalists and governments weaponizing technology, the One Free Press Coalition chooses to focus its monthly “10 Most Urgent” list for October on cases of journalists who have been victims of surveillance or targeted by spyware, posing a threat to press freedom.

Journalists, whose feedback are you getting? And are you listening?

Trusting News: Here’s a question we love to ask journalists: How do you know what your community thinks of your work?

Network mapping: Learn a 30-minute strategy to find the right audience for your next project (and have fun doing it!)

OpenNews: This exercise can help you focus a project and include more voices in your reporting.

Now open! Free online course on environmental reporting (Opportunity)

IFJ: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has collaborated with the Thomson Foundation on this free online course to help journalists look into local environmental stories and their link to climate change.

This is how dangerous the “Papers” research can be (German – Listen)

Deutschlandfunk: The “Pandora Papers” continue the history of the “Panama Papers”. Journalists around the world researched and evaluated these revelations about tax havens. For some, this also means that they put themselves in great personal danger in their home countries.

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