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

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ANGOLA: Angola seeks Chinese help for digital TV

Advanced Television

BURUNDI: Burundian journalism in crisis

New Europe: The challenges facing Burundi’s journalists within a climate of declining press freedom and pluralism.

EGYPT: Egypt passes new law that keeps media in check

PMA: New media law in Egypt paves the way for a new Supreme Council to regulate and control the media, raising further press freedom concerns.

GAMBIA: Gambia orders three radio stations to cease broadcasting

Committee to Protect Journalists: No explanation given as three radio stations cease to broadcast.

SOUTH AFRICA: First draft of SABC inquiry report expected next week

SABC: The first draft report on the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) inquiry is expected to be concluded by the end of next week.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC probe nearly over

Independent Online: The ad hoc committee into the SABC is wrapping up its work with two former board chairpersons to appear before members of parliament next week.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC TV news viewership takes a plunge

Channel24: Viewership of the SABC’s flagship TV news bulletin has plunged, with the public broadcaster’s main English TV news bulletin on SABC3 at 18:30 that has shed more than 222 417 viewers in just one month according to the latest South African TV ratings.

SOUTH SUDAN: Radio Run by the Sun

Internews: South Sudanese engineer brings sunshine to the UK.`

SOUTH SUDAN: South Sudan media in tatters as economic crisis deepens

World Bulletin: Most journalists in war-torn South Sudan, a country where inflation is said to be close to 900 percent, are earning even less than security guards.

SUDAN: Sudan signs Declaration on Media Freedom in the Arab World

International Federation of Journalists: Hundreds of journalists, representatives of state institutions, civil society organisations and human rights activists joined  the signing of the Declaration on Media Freedom in the Arab World at a ceremony in Khartoum.

UGANDA: Are media professionals keeping up with the pace of technology in newsrooms?

New Vision

ZAMBIA: ZNBC Increase TV Licence Fee From K3 To K30

Kitwe Times: The Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) is set to increase the TV licence fee from K3 to K30.

AFGHANISTAN: Afghanistan: an intense year for local radio

BBC Media Action: Security threats against journalists and financial pressure are just two of the challenges facing local radio in Afghanistan. Mukhtar explains how training and information-sharing helped stations survive against the odds in 2016.

CHINA: Independent Journalism in China Struggles to Survive

Via Freedom House: Chinese journalists have long operated in one of the world’s most restrictive media environments, but conditions for investigative journalism and liberal commentary have especially deteriorated since 2013.

HONG KONG: Veteran Hong Kong journalists launch new, non-profit Chinese news site in defence of press freedom

Hong Kong Free Press: A new non-profit Chinese-language news site called Citizen News launched on January 1, 2017 in Hong Kong.

INDONESIA: Indonesia to set up agency to combat fake news

ABS-CBN News: Indonesia is setting up an agency that will tackle fake news after a flood of untrue stories on social media, an official said Thursday, including claims China was waging biological warfare against the country using contaminated chilli seeds.

MYANMAR: Free speech curtailed in Aung San Suu Kyi’s Myanmar as prosecutions soar

The Guardian: Dozens of people have been charged or jailed for allegedly defaming the regime that the Nobel laureate leads, raising fears of continued oppression.

SINGAPORE: Singapore hints at changes in cybersecurity, media laws to keep pace with technology

ZD Net: Government says broadcast act will be updated this year to ensure streaming sites, such as Netflix, meet Singapore “standards” and cybersecurity bill will enable audits to be carried out.

SOUTH KOREA: South Korea deregulates pay-TV

ABU: The South Korean government is planning to deregulate the domestic pay-TV industry to facilitate mergers and acquisitions among cable TV, satellite broadcasting and IPTV service providers.

THAILAND: Rocky road for media industry

Bangkok Post: The landscape of the Thai media industry is changing significantly with traditional media, especially the print segment, struggling to survive after the rise of online media.

REGIONAL: Suppression of online dissent in SE Asia in 2016

BBC Monitoring: BBC Monitoring’s Mark Wilson looks at how various states in South East Asia dealt with outlets and citizens who published material on the internet exposing alleged wrongdoing.

AUSTRALIA: ABC most trusted news source, poll shows, after Turnbull minister accuses it of ‘fake news’

The Age: People trust the ABC more than any other news source and would like to see it given more money and protected from political interference, research shows.

AUSTRALIA: Australian media not adapting fast enough

Mumbrella: Brands and creative agencies need to think outside their inner-city bubbles and embrace Australia’s increasing diversity if they want to remain relevant, argues SBS’ Andrew Cook.

AUSTRALIA: SBS Radio partners with AFTRS to create Australia’s first bilingual radio scholarship

SBS: An Australian first, the initiative aims to expand and enrich AFTRS’ student community by recognising an outstanding radio student, selected on the basis of merit from eligible students across several language groups.

MARSHALL ISLANDS: Marshall Islands’ 10-day internet blackout extended

BBC News: A 10-day internet blackout in the Marshall Islands has been extended with no firm end date because engineers are having trouble repairing an undersea fibre optic cable, it’s reported.

PAPUA NEW GUINEA: PNG media leaders remembered for their commitment to free press in the Pacific

ABC News: There are moving tributes to commemorate the contribution of two media leaders in Papua New Guinea who died within days of each other.

BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA: Media reflect Bosnia’s ethnic split

BBC Monitoring: Bosnia’s deep ethnic divisions are reflected in its media environment.

BULGARIA: Copyright spat forces Bulgaria radio to play old tunes

BBC News: Bulgaria’s public radio broadcaster has been banned from playing millions of contemporary songs because of a row over copyright payments.

FRANCE: France Télévisions’ plans for Netflix rival take shape

Digital TV Europe: France Télévisions has been in touch with about 10 major producers about securing content for its forthcoming SVOD service to rival Netflix in the French market.


EBU: The Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB) is celebrating 60 years of television broadcasting with a variety of events throughout 2017.

IRELAND: Libel damages squeeze Ireland’s press

International Press Institute: Outsize jury awards are turning Irish journalism into a risky business.

ITALY: Rai channels now all HD

Advanced Television: Viewers in Italy using the Tivùsat TV platform that broadcasts from Eutelsat’s HOTBIRD neighbourhood can now watch a full line-up of HD channels from Rai.

NORWAY: Norway first to start switching off FM radio

The Guardian: Switch to digital-only radio is opposed by majority of population and will be watched closely by other countries

POLAND: The ongoing struggle for media freedom in Poland

PMA: It is just over a year since Poland’s Law and Justice Party (PiS) came to power in an election that had severe consequences for free and independent media in the country.

PORTUGAL: Low wages and job insecurity threaten media freedom

Index on Censorship: Excessive “subliminal” pressure leading to deterioration of work and rights in Portugal.

SPAIN: RTVE fined for continued covert advertising during MasterChef

Rapid TV News: Spain’s competition authority has once again fined the country’s public broadcaster RTVE for covert advertising on television.

UK: BBC looking to develop haptic VR and AR experiences

Digital TV Europe: BBC Earth is looking to experiment with ‘haptic’ virtual reality experiences – involving a sense of touch as well as sight and hearing.

UK: Where now for media reform in the UK?

LSE Media Policy Project

GENERAL: DAB Expansion Continues Across Europe

New Bay Media: Updates from the Netherlands, Germany and Latvia

BRAZIL: Brazil prepares for FTA vs. pay-TV battle

Rapid TV News: Analysts are predicting that 2017 will see intense negotiations between pay-TV operators and free-to-air (FTA) networks in Brazil with the gradual analogue TV switch-off.

COLOMBIA: Colombia taxes OTT and mobile services

Rapid TV News: Colombia has sanctioned a new regulation that taxes every over-the-top (OTT) service and establishes a new levy on mobile data packages.

ECUADOR: Attacks on freedom of expression in Ecuador increase due to the application of the communications law, according to report

Knight Center: Journalism in the Americas

JAMAICA: Professor Anthony Clayton Is New Broadcasting Commission Chairman

The Gleaner

VENEZUELA: Lack of press materials worsens, causes Venezuela’s oldest newspaper to stop its print edition

Knight Center: Journalism in the Americas: Due to lack of newsprint and other press materials, 22 Venezuelan print media had to decrease their page counts and suspend the inclusion of inserts and special editions during the last six months of 2016, according to the Press and Society Institute of Venezuela (IPYS Venezuela).

ISRAEL: IBA closure delayed, opposition keeps Knesset up all night

The Jerusalem Post: Officially, the law is meant to allow the government extra time to prepare for the change in public broadcasting, but Kan said it is ready to begin working.

GENERAL: 10 social media lessons from the Middle East in 2016

Your Middle East

CANADA: Digital has not killed the radio frequency in Canada — yet

CBC News: As Norway moves to eliminate FM, 14 radio stations experimenting with HD Radio here.

US: Charney takes lead at NPR One, McNamara leaves PBS and other comings and goings

Current: Tamar Charney, interim managing editor of NPR One for the past three months, has assumed that role permanently.

US: GOP commissioners signal intent to review reporting requirements for public broadcasters

Current: The FCC’s two Republican commissioners have volunteered to overturn new agency regulations requiring public broadcasters to start disclosing personal information about their board members and officers.

US: Transition to Trump: What Obama’s Freedom of Information legacy means for press

Committee to Protect Journalists: As a new presidential administration prepares to take over the U.S., CPJ examines the status of press freedom, including the challenges journalists face from surveillance, harassment, limited transparency, the questioning of libel laws, and other factors.

US: The U.S. Media’s Problems Are Much Bigger than Fake News and Filter Bubbles

Harvard Business Review: The U.S. media has come under intense scrutiny, with analysts, politicians, and even journalists themselves accusing it of bias and sensationalism — of having failed us — in its coverage of the presidential election.

US: WFYI, other public radio stations bulk up news staffs

IBJ: WFYI-FM 90.1 is bolstering its news department from 11 to 15—thanks to grants running through 2018—at a time many commercial print and broadcast news departments are downsizing.

115 journalists killed in 2016 – year begins and ends with mass casualties

INSI: A total of 115 journalists died in 2016 simply for doing their jobs, according to the International News Safety Institute’s (INSI) annual Killing the Messenger report of journalism casualties from around the world.

The best investigative journalism of 2016

IJNET: Now that 2016 has come to a close, it’s time to look back on the in-depth, investigative reporting that galvanized world leaders and citizens into action.

Internet shutdowns – an explainer

DW Akademie: With governments increasingly pulling the plug on Internet and social networks during critical periods such as protests and elections, it’s time to get informed about Internet shutdowns.

Fewer journalists killed in 2016, but conflict deaths remain high

International Press Institute: Sustainable change depends upon aggressive tackling of impunity, IPI warns

Focus more on fighting bad journalism, less on fake news

Columbia Journalism Review: The fake news panic has reached an advanced stage in which the smart take on the situation—published at CJR and elsewhere—is to call for more direct descriptions of the problem: lies, propaganda, deception.

Media Feast, News Famine: Ten Global Advertising Trends that Threaten Independent Journalism

CIMA: Even as citizens feast on an growing buffet of digital media choices, there is an increasing famine of credible, thorough, and independent nationally-focused news reporting.

Nordicom’s top five media trends news in 2016


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