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

Click on the drop-down menus below to reveal the latest regional stories.

GHANA: Ghana won’t have press freedom without accountability

CPJ: Impunity prevails in another recent attack that police committed to investigating.

KENYA: Media Council Of Kenya Orders Researchers To Provide Accurate Data

Broadcast Media Africa: The Media Council of Kenya is putting together measures to promote the availability of credible media data to help in the decision-making process of advertising by corporates and media agencies.

LIBERIA: Repeal of Criminal Libel in Sight as Senate Approves Bill

MFWA: There has been further progress in efforts to decriminalise libel in Liberia with the Senate voting unanimously on February 7, 2019 to approve amendments to the repressive sections of Liberia’s penal code.

SOUTH AFRICA: ANC denies allegations of stalling SABC board vacancies

SABC News: The African National Congress (ANC) in Parliament has denied an allegation that it is trying to delay the process of filling eight vacancies on the South African Broadcasting Cooperation (SABC) board.

SOUTH AFRICA: Govt to ensure independence of the SABC: Ramaphosa

SABC News: President Cyril Ramaphosa says government will ensure the independence of the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC). Ramaphosa however cautioned the public broadcaster on the need for efficient and transparent use of resources.

SOUTH AFRICA: SANEF urges political parties not to interfere with journos doing their job

Eye Witness News: Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams tried to stop an SABC journalist from capturing visuals at an Eastern Cape ANC manifesto rally on Saturday.

SUDAN: Sudan wages a vicious campaign to silence journalists (Opinion)

Financial Times: I grew up watching censors rip apart my father’s newspaper, now they have forced me out of Khartoum.

TANZANIA: Finding the Stories Buried in Data

Internews: Journalists in Tanzania learn the skills to produce stories supported by data and statistics

UGANDA: Several Ugandan journalists arrested while investigating corruption

RSF: The two journalists, BBC producer Mohamed Kassim and Godfrey Badebye, a cameraman with the Ugandan TV channel NBS, were arrested together with their fixer and driver in the capital, Kampala, while investigating the suspected theft of drugs by government employees from public health centres for the purpose of sale to nearby countries such as South Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo.

CAMBODIA: Cambodia media stranglehold continues despite propaganda

IPI: Recent ‘solidarity dinner’ obscures unchanged situation following crackdown

CHINA: China’s multi-billion dollar media campaign ‘a major threat for democracies’ around the world

ABC News: Experts warn China’s media is being wielded as a tool to shape public opinion and serve the ideological aims of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) across the globe.

CHINA: China Makes Its DRM Move

RadioWorld: The nation becomes world’s leading Digital Radio Mondiale shortwave broadcaster in just one year

INDIA: Cabinet approves Rs 1,054 crore scheme for Prasar Bharati

Times of India: In a significant boost to Prasar Bharati, the Union cabinet on Wednesday approved a scheme under which the public broadcaster will be provided over Rs 1,054 core for a three year period till 2020 for strengthening broadcast infrastructure and network development.

INDIA: Govt to make Doordarshan future ready

Times of India: The cabinet committee on economic affairs on Wednesday approved a proposal mooted by the ministry of information and broadcasting to fund public broadcaster Prasar Bharati’s “Broadcasting Infrastructure and Network Development” scheme for three years from 2017-18 to 2019-20.

INDIA: Prasar Bharati’s Shashi Shekhar Vempati on DD India revamp, OTT plan, TRAI tariff regime

Indian Television: Indiantelevision.com caught up with Vempati to talk about the success of DD India after the revamp, tariff order and Doordarshan’s OTT platform plans.

INDIA: The ease of listening FM on Smartphones will be the driving factor for expanding the FM footprint, says Prasar Bharti CEO Shashi Shekhar Vempati

R&M Biz: All India Radio’s (AIR) FM can now modernise as well as expand its footprint in the remotest areas as well as border regions of Jammu and Kashmir and Indo-Nepal border owing to Prasar Bharati’s Broadcasting Infrastructure and Network Development scheme.

INDONESIA: Indonesia artists slam bill banning ‘negative’ foreign influences

Aljazeera: Concerned musicians say draft legislation can be used to curb freedom of speech, a claim the government denies.

INDONESIA: No progress on press freedom, impunity under Jokowi’s watch

Asia Pacific Report

JAPAN: Journalist Kosuke Tsuneoka ordered to surrender passport in Tokyo on way to report on Yemen humanitarian crisis

The Japan Times: On his way to board a flight to Doha at Haneda airport in Tokyo this past Saturday night, Kosuke Tsuneoka’s passage was abruptly halted.

PHILIPPINES: Outcry as Rappler journalists in Philippines hit with new charges

The Guardian: Amnesty and Reporters Without Borders condemn prosecution of news website, editor Maria Ressa and staff

MYANMAR: Journalists are fearful in new Myanmar

UCA News: Aung San Suu Kyi govt asks for patience as the country is still in a period of transition

MYANMAR: ‘Overreacting to failure’: Facebook’s new Myanmar strategy baffles local activists

The Guardian: As Facebook tries to address its role in spreading hate speech, human rights experts criticize fresh ban of ethnic armed groups.

NEPAL: Provincial media bills will curtail press freedom, experts warn

The Kathmandu Post: Provincial assemblies should take into account the importance of fourth estate in democracy and governance, observers say.

PAKISTAN: Pakistani journalist critical of government seized outside home

Reuters: A Pakistani journalist under scrutiny for anti-government social media posts was beaten and seized outside his home on Saturday, his son said, in the latest sign of pressure on media.

SOUTH KOREA: Rights watchdog calls for more gender equality in broadcasting

Yonhap News Agency: South Korea’s human rights watchdog on Thursday asked a media regulation agency to address gender inequality on the boards of broadcasting and communications regulatory bodies and television programs.

TAIWAN: Taiwan Rises Fast as New Production Hub

Variety: The uncertainties that loom over the media in mainland China could soon spark a renaissance of Taiwan’s film and television industries.

THAILAND: Thai commission explores development ‘possibilities’ to spur 5G advancement

The Phnom Penh Post: The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) is exploring the possibility of drawing on its research and development fund to make loans to telecom operators as a new financial option to encourage the operators to bid for new spectrum licences later this year.

THAILAND: Thailand suspends TV channel linked to ex-PM Thaksin ahead of poll

Reuters: Thailand’s telecoms regulator on Tuesday suspended the operating licence of a television channel linked to ousted former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra weeks ahead of a general election, citing national security concerns.

AUSTRALIA: ‘It is understood’: How oblique sourcing is hurting Australian media (Opinion)

The Sydney Morning Herald

AUSTRALIA: Out of Africa? Future of ABC’s Nairobi bureau in doubt

The Guardian: Sources say a lot of heavy equipment has been removed but broadcaster refutes rumours. Plus: the search for a Q&A host.

AUSTRALIA: Regulation needed to save Australian journalism from Facebook and Google, watchdog says

The Guardian: Australian Competition and Consumer Commission says digital behemoths’ market power is weakening the news media

NEW ZEALAND: RNZ launches out-of-home campaign with Big Communications and Together

Stop Press: This week, for the first time in years, RNZ has launched an out-of-home campaign in Auckland with its creative and media partners, Big Communications and Together.

REGIONAL: Pacific media leaders discuss challenges faced by the region (Listen)

RNZ: Heads of regional media organisations and telecommunications companies have gathered in Auckland to discuss the changes occurring in the Pacific and the adaptations needed to meet those changes.

BELGIUM: An investigation into the world of digitising and archiving

PSN Europe: PSNEurope’s Marc Maes looks into the workings of VIAA, the Flemish Institute for Archiving, as well as the French-speaking RTBF and the leading Memnon Archiving services.

BELGIUM: RTBF adopts new strategic plan for media education

RTBF: In accordance with its management contract, RTBF has an active media education policy. An interview with téphane Hoebeke, Legal Officer at the Legal Department and Head of Media Education, on the various actions deployed in this area by the Belgian public broadcaster.

CROATIA: Croatia, a thousand lawsuits against journalists

SEENPM: In terms of freedom of expression and the safety of journalists, 2019 appears to be starting with the worst premises.

ESTONIA: The Estonian public broadcaster ERR’s FTA channels have been made available to viewers nationally in HD.

Broadband TV News: The Estonian public broadcaster ERR’s FTA channels have been made available to viewers nationally in HD.

FINLAND: Finland sets precedent in sentencing journalists’ harassers

IPI: Recent court rulings praised by country’s journalistic community

FRANCE: Consultations on public media: the French want reliable information first (French)

Les Echos: In the online survey launched by Radio France and France Télévisions, the main expectation for the television of the future is “reliable and quality information” for 68% of respondents, well ahead of “a wide range of cultural programs” (43%).

FRANCE: French ‘boys’ club’ of journalists accused of bullying women online

The Guardian: Five suspended over role in group that allegedly harassed other journalists for years

FRANCE: When The Pressure Becomes Too Great – Why So Many French Journalists Are Quitting The Profession

EJO: Being a journalist in France is a tough call these days. Not only do they have to be able to meet the insatiable demands imposed by the 24-hour news cycle, they also frequently face hostile reactions as they try to do their job of reporting on what’s happening in the country.

HUNGARY: Hungarian investigative journalism gets boost from IJ4EU grants

IPI: New fund supports cross-border projects in Europe

IRELAND: RTÉ2 to have catchup channel

Irish Examiner: RTÉ viewers are to be provided with increased catch-up opportunities for their favourite TV programmes.

LATVIA: LSM English: Past, present and possibly future

LSM.LV: Yesterday I climbed into my car on the way to work, clicked on Latvian Radio and heard that in the committee rooms of the Saeima they were discussing shutting down the LSM English language service of which I am the editor. This was a fairly disorienting and unexpected experience.

POLAND: In Poland, media coverage of mayor’s killing underscores polarization

IPI: Public broadcaster under renewed criticism for one-sided attacks on opposition

SWEDEN: Grass Valley, SVT, Net Insight claim benchmark for ski championship

Rapid TV News: Sweden’s media solutions provider Net Insight and the country’s national public broadcaster Sveriges Televison (SVT) have teamed with Grass Valley to undertake what they say is unprecedented remote IP production of the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships.

SWITZERLAND: SRG “No Billag was like a cleansing thunderstorm” (German – Interview)

Persoenlich: For the past year, Bakel Walden has been responsible for development and supply at the SRG. A conversation about the hard test one year after the ‘destiny’ vote, the planned streaming platform and the symbolism of parachutes.

UK: BBC Radio 4’s news not biased against Brexit, says regulator

The Guardian: Ofcom rejects complaint by politicians who claim BBC gives more airtime to remainers

UK: Even More or Less: Designing a Data-Rich Listening Experience

BBC: Today we’re launching a prototype podcast player on BBC Taster. This is an experiment in how we can use data to enhance the listening experience for our radio programmes and podcasts. One potential application of this technology is to tackle “fake news” by showing you the data sources that we use for our audio content.

UK: How the BBC is building content for voice assistants

Techworld: The national broadcaster has set up a standalone team to focus on AI voice assistants

UK: “Journalism partnerships work” says the BBC, a year on from the launch of pioneering project in local news

BBC: A pioneering partnership between the BBC and the local news industry has resulted in more than 50,000 public service stories in its first year and is now attracting international attention from other countries keen to replicate its success.

UK: Ofcom reins in BBC commercial activities

Advanced Television: UK media regulator Ofcom has published two decisions relating to the BBC’s commercial and commissioning activities.

UK: Public funds should be used to rescue local journalism, says report

The Guardian: Cairncross review warns that closure of local newspapers threatens democracy

UKRAINE: PBC board calls on supervisory board to reconsider its decision to sack Alasania (Paywall)

Kyiv Post: The management board of the National Public Television and Radio Company of Ukraine (NPTRCU) [also referenced as Public Broadcasting Company (PBC)] has called on the supervisory board of the PBC to reconsider its decision on early termination of the contract with its board chairman Zurab Alasania.

UKRAINE: Sudden dismissal of Ukrainian Public Broadcaster Chief: political, or apolitical reasons?

Euromaidan Press: The abrupt dismissal of the Ukrainian Public Broadcaster director Zurab Alasania has raised a media fury in Ukraine, with accusations ranging from censorship to state coercion prior to elections.

GENERAL: Report: Urgent action needed to protect press freedom in Europe

EFJ: Press freedom in Europe is more fragile now than at any time since the end of the Cold War. That is the alarming conclusion of a report launched today by the 12 partner organizations of the Council of Europe Platform to promote the protection of Journalism and safety of journalists.

MEXICO: Mexico denies entry to at least 2 journalists covering migrant caravan

CPJ: Officials from Mexico’s National Institute for Migration denied entry to at least two international journalists who tried to enter the country in January 2019 to cover a migrant caravan in Tijuana.

MEXICO: The new face of Canal 22 (Spanish)

El Economista: In addition to programmes from the United States that are broadcast on Channel 22 International, Armando Casas, director of the state media, announced Monday alongside the Secretary of Culture, Alejandra Frausto, that the frequency 22.2 of the cultural public television that he is now directing will be focused on cinema.

NICARAGUA: IACHR Condemns Increasing Attacks on the Press and Ongoing Human Rights Violations in Nicaragua

IACHR: The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) has condemned the escalating attacks on the press, the censorship and closure of media outlets, and the arbitrary detention and prosecution of journalists in Nicaragua.

REGIONAL: Governments in Venezuela and Nicaragua strangle press freedom, while impunity prevails in Bolivia and Mexico

IFEX: Thus far, 2019 is showing little promise. Just 30 days into the New Year, additional aggravating circumstances have added to the already complicated situation that was experienced in Latin America and the Caribbean in 2018.

GENERAL: Increased internet access and insecurity for journalists among media trends in Latin America, according to UNESCO

Knight Center: The inhabitants of Latin America and the Caribbean have seen an increase in access to content on digital platforms in the last six years, according to the report “World trends in freedom of expression and media development: regional overview of Latin America and the Caribbean 2017/2018.” The report analyzes trends in the region and how they affect freedom of expression, pluralism and media independence, as well as the safety of journalists.

IRAN: Mixed messages in Iran over freedom of expression online

France24: We take a look at Iranians’ use of social media and the restrictions placed on them, this as the country marks 40 years since the Islamic Revolution. President Hassan Rouhani has spoken out against censorship and argues for a plurality of voices online. Yet Instagram may soon follow Twitter, Facebook and YouTube in becoming banned.

PALESTINE: Palestinian Journalists’ Club condemns Gaza media closures

MEMO: The Palestinian Journalists’ Club (PJC) has expressed its concern at the closure of media institutions in the Gaza Strip.

TURKEY: Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of February 2, 2019


TURKEY: Turkey’s female journalists doubly targeted in media crackdown

IPI: Women journalists face physical and psychological attacks on a daily basis.

CANADA: CBC marks record-breaking number of Canadian Screen Award nominations for third consecutive year

CBC: CBC has received 236 nominations from the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television for the 2019 Canadian Screen Awards, once again marking a new record for the national public broadcaster by exceeding last year’s previous benchmark of 210.

CANADA: CBC/Radio-Canada announces the appointment of Barbara Williams as Executive Vice-President, CBC

CBC/Radio-Canada: Today, Catherine Tait, President and CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada, announced the appointment of Barbara Williams as Executive Vice-President, CBC.

CANADA: Inuit language producers still hold out hope for TV Nunavut

Nunatsiaq News: “We need TV Nunavut. We need someone who can say “100 per cent Inuktitut”.

US: Alaska Public Media grant will enhance coverage of rural health

Current: Alaska Public Media has received $500,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to expand reporting on health-care issues in rural areas of the state.

US: NAJA launches Indigenous Investigative Collective

NAJA: The Native American Journalists Association will provide resources to support transparency and responsibility through the IIC.

US: Several journalists say US border agents questioned them about migrant coverage

CPJ: The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned by reports that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is harassing journalists or subjecting them to invasive questioning during secondary screening when they cross into the United States.

US: Trump supporter attacks BBC cameraman at El Paso rally

BBC News: A supporter of US President Donald Trump has attacked a BBC cameraman at a campaign rally in El Paso, Texas.

Five tips for breaking into broadcast

Journalism.co.uk: Whether you are a journalism student or a budding broadcaster with no experience, here is how to get that dream job behind the microphone

How NYT Cooking Became the Best Comment Section on the Internet

The Ringer: The subscription-based service offers hundreds of recipes—and even more suggestions, from helpful, well-meaning users. Who knew that such a thing was possible?

In Liverpool, a football podcast has grown into a real media company — based mostly on listener payment, not advertising


Is streaming killing the radio star?

The Guardian: As more young listeners switch off, broadcasters are having to ring the changes

Navigating coverage of climate change and agriculture: CIAT and partners host webinars for journalists this February

CIAT: During a series of webinars on climate change and agriculture, a global team of scientific experts will discuss tools journalists can use to help better convey how climate change and agriculture are intricately linked.

Researchers say fears about ‘fake news’ are exaggerated

CJR: Fears about the spread and influence of fake news have been over-hyped, Nyhan says, and many of the initial conclusions about the scope of the problem and its effect on US politics were exaggerated or just plain wrong.

Show don’t tell: continuing a legacy in journalism

Trust, Media and Democracy: How the Colorado Media Project will work to strengthen local news

“This is the journalism” & other insights from networked reporting

The Membership Puzzle Project

Young reporters find new ways to break into journalism

Financial Times: Crowdfunded platforms and non-profits create opportunities in a shrinking industry

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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.

Header image: TV cameras lined up, covering large public event. Credit: Microgen/istock