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

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ETHIOPIA: ‘Ethiopia needs to open up civic space’: UN rights chief

Deutsche Welle: UN human rights chief tells DW that despite Ethiopia’s tremendous economic and sociocultural advances, the government there should allow the opposition, free media and rights council to thrive.

GAMBIA: Gambian government gives strong commitment to media freedom

RSF: By reiterating the new government’s commitment to media freedom, the minister of information and communication, Demba Ali Jawo, has made it clear that a new page is in the process of being turned in Gambia.

LIBERIA: The Tragedy of Liberian Media (Opinion)

GNN Liberia: Opinion piece exploring the role, history and future of journalism in Liberia’s democracy.

KENYA: Politicians and police biggest ‘threats to media freedom’

Daily Nation: Politicians and security agents have been named as some of biggest threats to media freedom in Kenya, even as the entire world celebrated World Press Freedom Day.

KENYA: Time to save ailing public broadcaster (Opinion)

Daily Nation: It has been decades since anybody offered any critical thinking on the state of the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC)…

NAMIBIA: Corruption, media laws threaten press freedom

The Namibian

NAMIBIA: Presidency reacts to media freedom plunge

New Era: Press secretary in the presidency, Albertus Aochamub, has hit back at claims that government was to blame for Namibia’s slump in global press freedom rankings, after the country dropped from 17th in the world to 24th.

NIGERIA: Bold female voices: broadcasting under the shadow of Boko Haram

BBC Media Action: At the height of the Boko Haram insurgency local radio stations stayed on air. Three years on from the Chibok schoolgirls’ kidnapping, Rachael Borlase profiles the female broadcasters in Northern Nigeria proudly telling their own stories.

NIGERIA: Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria (BON) Will Host Key Global Industry Leaders

Broadcast Media Africa: BON has announced that it will hold its 3rd Annual International Summit on Digital Broadcasting In Nigeria (and 68th General Assembly) on the 22nd – 23rd August 2017 in Lagos, Nigeria.

NIGERIA: Senate Restricts Cameramen From Covering Proceedings

Via All Africa: The Senate has announced the further reduction of television cameramen covering the proceedings of the upper legislative chamber from 13 to 6, a decision which led to the boycott of Thursday proceedings by all press corps television cameramen.

SOUTH AFRICA: South Africa May Miss New Digital Migration Deadline Of June 2018

Broadcast Media Africa: A South African parliamentary committee have raised fresh concern about the ability of the country to meet its new digital migration deadline of June 2018, which was set by the former Communications minister.

SOUTHERN AFRICA: A year of persistent attacks on media threaten press freedom

Amnesty International: Persistent attacks against journalists and media owners are threatening press freedom and the growth of independent media across Southern Africa, Amnesty International said today to mark World Press Freedom Day.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA: Pay TV Market In Sub-Saharan Africa Could Be Worth 7 Billion Dollars (US) By 2020

Broadcast Media Africa

SUDAN: Sudan’s silent conflicts: State censorship in the war zones

IFEX: Acquiring official access to Sudan’s conflict zones is challenging for foreign journalists, and reporting conditions for local Sudanese journalists – especially those from Darfur – are worse.

TANZANIA: Govt, Media Owners Called Upon to Protect Journalists

The Citizen: Media stakeholders have urged the government and owners of media houses to protect journalists as Tanzania joins the rest of the world to mark World Press Freedom Day.

TANZANIA: Media shouldn’t ‘gag’ the government, Mwakyembe warns on leaders ‘blacklist’

Daily News (Tanzania): The big news in Tanzania now is that some media houses are taking to ‘blacklisting’ some government leaders from reaching their audiences.

BANGLADESH: Bangladesh media faces more restrictions now than ever before

Dhaka Tribune: The government has stifled freedom of expression & its various attempts to silence critical coverage has resulted in more restrictions on the media in recent years, Amnesty International claims in new report.

CENTRAL ASIA: Central Asia’s Freedom of Speech Stalemate

Institute for War & Peace Reporting: Space for critical debate shrinks further amid economic crises and fears over extremism.

CHINA: China’s latest internet controls to stifle free expression

CPJ: The Committee to Protect Journalists strongly condemns China’s move on Tuesday to impose yet more stringent controls on the media and free expression by requiring strict licensing requirements for virtually all forms of news distribution.

INDIA: AIR-India set for second phase of DRM rollout

ABU: India’s public broadcaster, All India Radio (AIR) has completed phase I of the national DRM digital radio roll-out in India.

INDIA: India plans Ofcom-style regulator

Advanced Television: Plans made despite presence of plenty of media-related regulators.

INDONESIA: Indonesia plays host to world press freedom day as violence against journalists is on the rise

CIMA: Report exploring the mixed situation for journalists in Indonesia, this year’s host of UNESCO’s World Press Freedom Day.

INDONESIA: Rave hospitality, but Indonesia fails West Papua with media freedom hypocrisy

Asia Pacific Report: Indonesian hospitality was given a rave notice last week for hosting World Press Freedom Day 2017, but it was also given a huge black mark for its “gagging” of free discussion over West Papua violations.

MYANMAR: The new TV channels: More choice for viewers, but are they viable?

Frontier Myanmar: The five companies recently awarded free-to-air television licences will double the number of broadcasters fighting for advertising revenue in what is already a highly competitive market.

PAKISTAN: Court issues notice to PEMRA chairman

The Nation (Pakistan):  The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Wednesday issued notice to Chairman Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) in a petition challenging ban on the broadcast of an interview of the arrested terrorist Ehsanullah Ehsan.

PAKISTAN: Pakistan’s Punjab chief says press freedom key to democracy

The Nation (Pakistan):

PAKISTAN: Legal, political and policy environment for Pakistani media deteriorated significantly: Pakistan Press Freedom Report 2017

Pakistan Press Foundation: The legal, political and policy environment for Pakistani media deteriorated significantly and Pakistani media professionals continue to face violence while those who attack journalists enjoy impunity from prosecution.

PAKISTAN: TV channels ‘blatantly exploited’ freedom of speech; Marriyum

Pakistan Observer: Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb on Sunday said that while the government supports freedom of speech, it has been “blatantly exploited” by the media houses recently.

TAIWAN: Taiwan moved up six spots on this year’s World Press Freedom Index. Here’s why that’s troubling.

The Washington Post: Taiwan appeared to make a sudden leap forward in press freedom this year, moving up six places to secure the 45th spot in the 2017 World Press Freedom Index. But what does that say about the rest of the region?

THAILAND: Thai news organizations urge government to scrap media control bill

Reuters: Thirty media bodies in Thailand marked World Press Freedom day on Wednesday by calling on the military government to scrap legislation that seeks to tighten control of news reporting in the Southeast Asian country.

AUSTRALIA: Do we need a publicly-funded national newspaper? (Opinion)

ABC News: Q&A panelists respond to a question asking if “we need a publicly funded national newspaper to go along with our beloved national broadcaster?”.

AUSTRALIA: Australian Government to abolish licence fees as part of revised media reforms

Rapid TV News: The Australian Government has tabled a revised media reforms package that includes the removal of A$130 million in annual licensing fees paid by free-to-air (FTA) broadcasters in favour of new spectrum-based system.

AUSTRALIA: Sweeping media reforms to include crackdown on TV gambling ads

SBS: The Turnbull government is set to restrict gambling advertising on live TV sports coverage as part of new media reforms.

FIJI: Media training on sustainable growth

The Fiji Times: Media representatives have been advised to have a better understanding of the regional dimensions of sustainable and resilient development.

NEW ZEALAND: Media rumours swirl in wake of merger rejection

Stuff: Takeover rumours are swirling in the wake of the competition watchdog’s decision to block Fairfax New Zealand and NZME’s proposed merger.

NEW ZEALAND: NZME, Fairfax merger declined over ‘risk of causing harm’ to NZ democracy

Asia Pacific Report: New Zealand’s Commerce Commission has declined a merger which would have seen two of the country’s largest media outlets merge.

SAMOA: Samoa surges in Pacific press-freedom rankings as other nations falter

ABC News: A global gauge of media openness, released ahead of World Press Freedom Day, shows some positive trends in the Pacific, with several of the region’s nations climbing strongly in the rankings.

TONGA: Concerns raised with Tongan king over media issues

Radio New Zealand: The world’s largest association of public broadcasters has written to the King of Tonga to express its concern over changes to the Tonga Broadcasting Commission.

TONGA: Global media body worried about Tongan democracy

Radio New Zealand: The Tonga government’s actions against the state broadcaster threaten to undermine democracy, according to the Public Media Alliance.

BOSNIA: Financial collapse of Bosnian public broadcaster imminent, MEPs warn

Intellinews: 24 MEPs have sent a letter to the authorities in Bosnia & Herzegovina, calling on them once again to take urgent measures to save the public broadcaster BHRT from imminent closure.

BOSNIA: The media in Bosnia-Herzegovina: fertile ground for political control

Osservatorio Balcani & Caucaso: The lack of transparency of media ownership in Bosnia-Herzegovina contributes to a situation in which political and economic pressure limit the freedom of the media

FINLAND: Pre-publishing: #Sipilägate and the breakup of the political bromance

Nordicom: When the Finnish public broadcaster YLE in November 2016 publishes an online story that infuriates Prime Minister Juha Sipilä, it becomes the starting point of an ongoing change of the entire Finnish media landscape. The relationship between media and politicians can no longer be taken for granted.

GEORGIA: Justice Council faces backlash after attack on media

OC MEDIA: Georgia’s High Council of Justice has come under fire from media rights organisations after accusing the media of ‘violating freedom of expression’ and announcing plans to fund outlets in exchange for positive coverage of the judiciary.

GERMANY: German govt proposes digital obligation for radios

Telecompaper: The bill ensures that when it passes the federal parliament all radio receivers sold in Germany must be able to receive radio services digitally.

HUNGARY: Hungary: Threats To Liberty, Autonomy And Diversity In Education And Media

EJO: Hungary’s ruling Fidesz party has introduced new legislation that could lead to the closure of Budapest’s Central European University. Gabor Polyak, a media law and policy specialist at University of Pecs, Budapest, argues the move is part of an ongoing attack on intellectual freedom in the country.

IRELAND: RTÉ’s Forbes: “Irish public media on precipice”

Advanced Television: Dee Forbes, Director General of Raidió Teilifís Éireann (RTÉ), the national public service broadcaster of the Republic of Ireland, has delivered a strong defence of public service broadcasting, in particular those broadcasters whose roles include safeguarding national tongues and identities.

NORWAY: Norway’s Slow TV: Fascinating viewers for hours or days at a time

CBS News: It’s television’s version of taking a deep breath … a very long, very slow, deep breath.

POLAND: Polish govt prepares law on media de-concentration

Telecompaper: The Polish Government is working on a draft act on de-concentration of media, reports Media2.pl. The draft will be ready by the end of June. It is inspired by legislation in Germany and France. The aim of the regulation is to restrict the share of foreign capital in the media market.

POLAND: Poland march: Thousands protest against ‘curbs on democracy’

BBC News: March against curbs to democracy by ruling PiS party, including their interference in public media.

ROMANIA: Changes ahead for Romania’s public radio

PMA: Deemed ‘incompatible’ and accused of abuse of office, the head of Romania’s public radio and its Board have been dismissed after Parliament rejected the company’s reports.

ROMANIA: Romania: mainstream TV networks and their owners

Osservatorio Balcani & Caucaso: Romanian television channels and the owners behind them: the cases of “Antena 1” and “Realitatea TV”. A report on Romania, media ownership, and freedom of the press.

SCANDINAVIA: Schibsted is creating new editorial formats — from messaging to personalized homepages

Nieman Lab: “This is not a reorganization that is forced upon a publisher. It’s a joint realization that if we join forces we can do more than by operating on our own.”

SPAIN: Only 10% of TVs will be ready for DVB-T2

Advanced Television: In five years 90 per cent of the existing 37.4 million TV sets in Spain will become obsolete with Spaniards being obliged to renew them or buy an adapter due to the implementation of the DVB-T2 standard.

SPAIN: FORTA very hard against the television duopoly: “to live together you have to let live” (Spanish)

PR Noticias: Carmen Amores, President of FORTA and General Director of the the Public Radio and Television of Castilla-La-Mancha, appeared this morning in the Forum of the New Communications making a strong defense of public service media represented by autonomic television.

UK: Facebook Aims to Tackle Fake News Ahead of U.K. Election

The New York Times: The social network published a series of advertisements in newspapers in Britain on Monday, giving advice to its millions of users in the country on how to spot misinformation online.

UK: ITV and C4 seek new chiefs as advertisers shift to online channels

Financial Times: The new leaders at Britain’s top networks will be challenged by internet upstarts.

UK: Netflix co-production among raft of BBC drama commissions

Digital TV Europe: The BBC has announced a raft of new drama series including Duty/Shame, a co-production with Netflix about a Japanese detective who travels to London looking for his missing brother.

UKRAINE: Will Ukrainians Ever Trust the Press?

Atlantic Council: Journalism has changed since the Euromaidan, but most Ukrainians still don’t trust the media.

GENERAL: Council of Europe blasts moves to turn public TV into state broadcasting

Euractiv: Public service broadcasting in Europe is under threat, the Council of Europe said yesterday, ahead of the World Press Freedom Day (3 May), a date which celebrates the fundamental principles of press freedom.

GENERAL: The Battle between the Media and Politics in Europe

Osservatorio Balcani & Caucaso: Increasing tensions between the interest of media and politics pose a serious threat for European democracy. An editorial by Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, President of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ)


EBU: Together, public service media (PSM) are the largest investors in European audiovisual content, spending EUR 18.2 billion per year.

ARGENTINA: TV Pública guild leaders ask Bertone to authorize TV Show (Spanish)

La Licuadora: Directors of unions of the private and state sector, signed a note addressed to Governor Rosana Bertone where they request that the weekly broadcast of the trade information program “Desde Las Bases” (From the Bases) be allowed. The Cooperativa de Trabajo “Ojo al Sur”, which produces it has been working on the space since last November but the Government does not authorize it.

BRAZIL: Ancine: investment in audiovisual for public TV needs to be deepened (Portuguese)

EBC: The decision of the National Film Agency (ANCINE) to invest in the audiovisual sector for public TVs was correct and needs to be deepened, since states and capitals have taken the audiovisual policy as a central element of the cultural management they want to develop.

BRAZIL: Communication Council to discuss use of sectoral funds for telecommunications (Portuguese)

Senado Noticias: The Social Communication Council of the National Congress will discuss on Monday (8), from 2:00 p.m., aspects of the collection and use of sector funds for telecommunications: Fund for the Universalization of Telecommunications Services (Fust) (Fistel) and contributions to the promotion of public broadcasting.

CARIBBEAN: Caribbean media urged to rethink role

Nation News: The Caribbean observed World Press Freedom Day on Wednesday amidst calls for the regional media industry to re-examine its place in the present environment and to invest more heavily in the skills to take it through to the next phases of media development.

ECUADOR: “Governments are obliged to protect journalistic work”: César Ricaurte, executive director of Fundamedios (Spanish)

NTN24: Regarding the situation in Ecuador, César said that “President-elect Lenin Moreno wants to put aside the war that President Rafael Correa began against the press,” which has so far left sanctions against seven media outlets for alleged censorship .

EL SALVADOR: El Salvador chooses Japanese technology for DTT switchover

Rapid TV News: El Salvador and Japan have reached a technology transfer agreement in a bid to speed up the digital TV deployment in the Central American country.

HONDURAS: Commission warns of impunity in 91 percent of violent deaths of media workers in Honduras

Knight Center Journalism in the Americas: From 2001 to the present, 69 media professionals in Honduras have died in violent circumstances, and people have been sentenced in only six of those cases. That is, 91 percent of the deaths remains in impunity, according to a report by the country’s National Commission of Human Rights (CONADEH for its acronym in Spanish).

MEXICO: Mexican president pledges to prioritize journalist safety and combat impunity

CPJ: Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto today pledged to prioritize combating impunity in the murders of journalists for the remainder of his term, which ends next year.

MEXICO: Government funding cripples Mexico’s free press

AlJazeera: Authorities in Mexico are paying vast sums of money for advertising space to media groups, which is having a crippling effect on the country’s independent press.

REGIONAL: UNESCO urges countries to rely on independent regulatory bodies to protect against media concentration

Knight Center Journalism in the Americas: Considering the concentration of media ownership that has historically existed in Latin America – which threatens diversity and pluralism in that sector – UNESCO has recommended that States seek a balance between the rights of broadcasters and the audience.

BAHRAIN: Bahrain denies accreditation to journalists

CPJ: Bahrain has over the past year refused to grant accreditation to several of its own citizens who report for foreign and independent media, including those working for The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse, France 24, and Monte Carlo Doualiya.

ISRAEL: Cabinet approves bill stripping new public broadcaster of news division

The Times of Israel: The cabinet approved on Wednesday legislation that will restructure the new public broadcasting corporation.

ISRAEL: Public broadcast compromise approved in first reading

The Jerusalem Post: Politicians on the opposition say Netanyahu is trying to make a news broadcast that will be more favorable to him.

SAUDI ARABIA: UN accuses Saudi Arabia of using terror laws to suppress free speech

The Guardian: Saudi Arabia has been accused of using anti-terror laws to suppress free expression.

TURKEY: Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of May 7

CPJ: CPJ’s weekly roundup of the ongoing media crackdown in Turkey.

CANADA: Streaming is on the rise, but radio remains king: study

Media in Canada: Nielsen Canada’s new Music 360 report found that radio rules in terms of time spent and overall penetration – but streaming services are on the rise, especially with millennials.

CANADA: CBC North to preserve Indigenous history

CBC Blog: Over the next five years, our colleagues at CBC North will be leading a major archive project to help preserve our Indigenous-language collection, a unique living record of the languages and cultures of many Northern communities.

CANADA: Vice Canada workers ratify collective agreement as digital journalists turn to unions

CBC News: New deal covers about 170 workers at Canadian branch of global media company.

US: Budget Bill Retains Funding for Arts Agencies, Public Broadcasting

Variety: A budget deal reached over the weekend spares funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and even increases money to the National Endowment for the Arts and the Humanities.

US: Democrats save arts funding for NPR and PBS from Donald Trump

The Independent: Mr Trump will likely still propose deep cuts or elimination of federal arts funding but they are safe for this financial year.

US: Maryland congressman aims to defund NPR, ITVS

Current: Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.), who railed against public media content during a House subcommittee meeting in March, tells Current that he wants Congress to defund NPR and the Independent Television Service.

US: Why America’s Public Media Can’t Do Its Job (Opinion)

Huffington Post: When the Trump administration released its proposed budget in March, it suggested eliminating federal funding for the Corporation of Public Broadcasting (CPB).

US: With press freedom under attack worldwide, US is setting wrong example

CPJ: For decades if not longer, repressive leaders around the world have defended restrictions on freedom of the press by citing examples of Western governments failing to live by their own professed standards.

Can Wikitribune combat fake news?

AlJazeera: Wikipedia cofounder Jimmy Wales’ new venture claims that it will ‘fix the news’, but it may also be in need of fixing.

Democratic Leaders Must Defend Press Freedom Abroad

Freedom House: Democracies are no longer immune to the virus of the authoritarian state.

Emails reveal squabble among scientists over how to talk to media about climate change

Columbia Journalism Review

The increasing importance of investigative journalism

Al Jazeera: From the US to Azerbaijan, exposing corruption is vital despite intimidation from criminal networks and governments.

Integrated video solutions key to digital transformation

Advanced Television

Public Service Media in the Age of Hyper Pluralism (Lecture)

CMDS: Monroe Price, Director of the Center for Global Communication Studies at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania and the founder of CMDS gave a public talk on April 24 on the challenges public service media faces in the era of Internet and satellite.

Protecting Journalism Sources In The Digital Age

EJO: Legal frameworks to protect journalism sources are increasingly at risk, according to a new international study of 121 countries.

Revisiting media and information literacy in the fake news age

Deutsche Welle: Everyone agrees on the importance of critically consuming media. On World Press Freedom Day 2017, a DW Akademie panel looked at ways of teaching people to do this amid rampant fake news, hate speech and filter bubbles.

A snapshot of a moment in the evolution of VR

Journalism Research News: A new Reuters Institute report VR for News: The New Reality? by Zillah Watson examines ongoing developments in VR, the major challenges and what the future of VR might look like for news organisations.

What can the UN do if your country cuts the internet?

AlJazeera: The UN considers the internet a human right, but governments are increasingly infringing on the rights of people online.

What makes news humanitarian?

Humanitarian Journalism: The dilemmas of reporting on suffering

Why Good Journalism Lost to Noisy Populists (Opinion)

Media Power Monitor: Open society media camp has lost the information war with the often inarticulate, yet vociferous, populist lot. To gain back the trust of the masses, they have to learn a more popular language.

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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.

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Header image: John Georgiou/Creative Commons