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

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BENIN: Media Regulator Lifts Sanctions Against Three Media Houses

Media Foundation for West Africa: Three of seven media organisations sanctioned by the media regulatory body in Benin, Haute Autorité de l’Audiovisuel et de la Communication (HAAC) have been permitted to resume operations.

CAMEROON: Why has Cameroon blocked the internet?

BBC News: Three weeks after reports that Cameroon had blocked the internet in English-speaking parts of the country, residents say services have yet to be restored. So what is going on?

EGYPT: How far is Egypt willing to go to have strong grip on media?

Al-Monitor: Fears of growing Executive control over the media.

GHANA: African broadcaster to lead African image branding in global TV space

News Ghana: An indigenous broadcaster launched a continental television channel here late Thursday seeking to play a leading role in telling the African story in the global broadcast space.

GHANA: Speaker Charges Media to Scrutinize Parliament

Via All Africa: A Speaker of Parliament has charged the media to play its watchdog role on the activities of Parliament to ensure proper accountability.

RWANDA: Media Fraternity Urged to Promote Early Literacy

Via All Africa: Media organisations have been urged to promote early literacy initiatives among all children.

SOUTH AFRICA: SABC loses Motsoeneng appeal

Screen Africa: The SABC has been handed yet another legal defeat over efforts to defend its former chief operating officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng.

SOUTH AFRICA: What Role for Media at South Africa’s State of the Nation?

All Africa: The storm surrounding the apparent restriction of media during the State of the Nation address has intensified after the Parliamentary Press Gallery Association in conjunction with the South African National Editors’ Forum walked out of a meeting with parliamentary officials.

ZAMBIA: ZNBC Intact, Chinese Have Not Bought National Broadcaster, Says Chanda

Via All Africa: State House has dismissed media reports claiming that Zambia’s public broadcaster- Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation ( ZNBC) had been sold.

REGIONAL: African Nations Increasingly Silence Internet to Stem Protests

The New York Times

INDIA: India to switch-off analogue TV by end 2023

ABU: India’s communications regulator is advising a phased programme for the implementation of digital terrestrial TV (DTT) in metro cities from 2019, and the entire country by the end of 2023.

INDIA: [Government] opposes news broadcast on FM

The Telegraph: The government has told the Supreme Court it is against granting of permission to community radio channels and FM radio stations to broadcast news programmes because of a “possible security risk” in the absence of a proper mechanism to monitor such content.

INDONESIA: Mainstream media expected to play greater role in tackling fake news

The Jakarta Post: The spread of fake news has taken place not only in Indonesia but also other countries and is an impact of the new era of global openness that Indonesians must deal with, the President has said.

INDONESIA: TV reporters attacked while covering Indonesia protest

Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ): Indonesian authorities should identify and bring to justice those responsible for assaulting two journalists with broadcaster Metro TV at a February 11 demonstration in the capital Jakarta, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

JAPAN: TV watchdog criticizes election coverage balance

The Japan Times: TV programs need to focus more on the overall fairness of political coverage during elections rather than allotting each candidate or political party the same amount of air time, an independent panel promoting ethical standards in broadcasting has said.

KAZAKHSTAN: Social media crackdown suffocates freedom of expression online

Amnesty International: The Kazakhstani authorities are using increasingly elaborate and aggressive methods to stamp out dissenting voices on the internet and social media, Amnesty International said in a briefing published today.

MYANMAR: Reform group to deliver Telecommunications Law findings to parliament

Frontier:  A group of civil society activists calling for changes to the controversial Telecommunications Law is submitting its research to the Union Parliament.

PAKISTAN: Cameraman killed in targeted attack in Karachi, Pakistan

International Federation of Journalists: Taimoor Abbas, 22-year-old assistant cameraman of privately-owned Samaa TV news channel, was shot in his head and chest when he was traveling in the Digital Satellite News Gathering (DSNG) van in north Nazimabad to report on an attack on the police.

PAKISTAN: Police arrest 30 over suspected involvement in Samaa channel attack

Daily Times: Police, in different raids on Monday, rounded up 30 people suspected of involvement in the attacks on a Samaa TV channel assistant cameraman, who was shot and killed Sunday night.

PAKISTAN: Radio Pakistan switching to Digital with DRM

ABU: Radio Pakistan is converting its AM and FM transmitters to DRM+ technology.

PHILIPPINES: Journalists still under pressure in Duterte’s Philippines

International Press Institute (IPI): Seven months into the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, press freedom remains under pressure in the Philippines.

THAILAND: Thai Media Groups Say Proposed Law Could Bring Total Government Control of the Press

Global Voices: In a rare display of unity, various media organizations in Thailand have joined ranks in opposing a government bill that threatens to further undermine press freedom in the country.

TURKMENISTAN: Election takes place amid growing crackdown on journalists

Reporters Without Borders (RSF): Turkmenistan’s remaining independent journalists are being subjected to an unprecedented crackdown.

UZBEKISTAN: Emboldened Media Shedding Self-Censorship


REGIONAL: Philippines, Indonesia commit to digital TV broadcasting

Nikkei Asian Review: Gradual switch by Southeast Asian giants seen spurring hardware demand

AUSTRALIA: ABC’s Fact Check unit relaunched in partnership with RMIT

The Guardian: Unit, which was shelved in May 2016, will test the accuracy of claims made by politicians, public figures, advocacy groups and institutions.

AUSTRALIA: SBS says ‘F U’ to racism in new TV and outdoor campaign

Mumbrella: SBS has revealed its new campaign ‘#FU2RACISM’ ahead of Face Up To Racism week, which runs from February 26 to March 5.

AUSTRALIA: Statement regarding the appointment of Dr Bulent Hass Dellal AO as SBS Chairman

SBS: The SBS Board and Executive today welcomed the appointment of Dr Bulent Hass Dellal AO as the SBS Chairman, as announced by the Minister for Communications, Mitch Fifield.

FIJI: Hopes self censorship proof will help Fiji media

RNZ: The author of a study showing continued self-censorship among Fiji’s journalists hopes its findings will help move the industry forward.

NEW ZEALAND: Behind the velvet curtain of RNZ Concert

Radio New Zealand (RNZ): At RNZ Concert, bringing you the music is a technical business. This World Radio Day, we invite you behind the velvet curtain and into a world with flashing lights, endless cables, its very own anxieties and its very own language…

NEW ZEALAND: RNZ creates Henare te Ua Māori journalism internship

Pacific Media Centre: Radio New Zealand has announced the establishment of a significant new training and development programme to support Te Reo Māori and foster Māori journalism.

VANUATU: Media in uncharted territory with FOI law now in force

Pacific Media Centre: Journalists in Vanuatu are already preparing to make Freedom of Information requests to test the government’s new law.

FINLAND: Chief editors: Media not a channel for personal freedom of speech

Yle: Chief editors of Finland’s most influential news sources say they must be able rely on loyalty to their organisations’ policies. At the same time, they say editors must encourage transparency about decision-making in their newsrooms.

FRANCE: France’s media under attack as election race heats up: watchdog

Reuters: Journalists in France are increasingly coming under “violent attacks” from political officials during the closely-fought presidential race, media freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said on Monday.

IRELAND: Ireland to get social media watchdog

Politico: The ‘Digital Safety Commissioner’ would produce a code of conduct to ensure platforms remove abusive content.

ITALY: Italy’s fake news battle

Al Jazeera: Who’s responsible for spreading fake news in Italy? The populist Five Star Movement, mainstream media or both?

KOSOVO: CoE Commissioner Nils Muižnieks urges to strengthen public service broadcasting in Kosovo

Osservatorio Balcani & Caucaso: The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muižnieks, is encouraging Kosovo authorities to safeguard media freedom in the country following his four-day mission to Kosovo.

KOSOVO: Kosovar journalists need to demand implementation of their access to information rights

Osservatorio Balcani & Caucaso: In Kosovo, access to information is well guaranteed in theory — in practise it’s a different story

NORWAY: Evidence from Norway: How public broadcasters influence voting behaviour

LSE: Election campaigns frequently feature passionate debates over the impact of media coverage on decisions made by voters. Drawing on evidence from a new study, Rune J. Sørensen illustrates the impact the introduction of state television services had in Norway.

POLAND: New research analyses PSM crisis in Poland

PMA: New research by Article 19 and the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights (HFHR) offers in-depth analysis about ongoing concerns surrounding the independence of public service media in Poland.`

ROMANIA: How Romania’s Independent Media Woke Up Its Readers

Centre for International Media Assistance (CIMA): As January came to a close, Romania’s government met late at night on the last day of the month to approve an emergency ordinance that decriminalized cases of official misconduct, or simply put: corruption.

SE EUROPE: Index’s youth board discusses media freedom in Europe with MMF correspondents

Index on Censorship: To highlight the most pressing concerns for press freedom in Europe in 2017, members Index’s outgoing youth board review the year gone by with some of our Mapping Media Freedom correspondents.

SPAIN: Digital radio: an opportunity for diversity (Spanish)

El Diario: With the blackout of the FM What’s at stake is taking listeners to a payment platform that turns them into merchandise, starting from the exploitation of their consumption data and their exposure to the advertising of the commercial chains.

SPAIN: Channel Moves Historic Archive to Cloud with VSN (Spanish)

TV y Video: The technology of VSN, together with the cloud services of the operator Andorra Telecom, has allowed the public broadcaster of Andorra to move all its historical file to the cloud, with the aim of conserving and storing in a more secure and controlled way all the Channel files.

SWITZERLAND: Use of radio in Switzerland: the digital revolution is well under way (French)

SRG SSR: The digital revolution continues its long march: in Switzerland, 54% of the use of radio is digital, as revealed in a recent survey.

UK: BBC to run iPlayer box-sets

Digital TV Europe: The BBC is due to publish a new run of box-sets on its iPlayer digital catch-up service, as part of director general Tony Hall’s plan to reinvent the service.

GENERAL: Digital radio develops in Europe (French)

Radio France International (RFI): Analogue radio may be living its last years in Europe. Several countries on the continent are considering the transition to the all-digital and its standard DAB +, for a better listening comfort and a better diffusion.

BRAZIL: Senate approves provisional measure which restructures the Empresa Brasil de Comunicação (EBC) (Portuguese)

Agência Senado: The Senate approved, on Tuesday 7 the Provisional Measure 744/2016, which reforms the administrative structure of Empresa Brasil de Comunicação (EBC).

BRAZIL: On World Radio Day, Fundac celebrates progress in the Public Service Media (Portuguese)

Notícias do Acre: Created and made official in 2011 by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the date celebrating World Radio Day was established for the whole of February 13.

COLOMBIA: What is the future of radio in Colombia? (Spanish)

EL TIEMPO: Experts say that the country is prepared for any technological change.

COLOMBIA: During World Radio Day, MinTIC congratulates the 1,596 stations in the country (Spanish)

RPT Noticias: As part of the international commemoration of World Radio Day, the ICT Ministry reiterates its commitment and support to all community, commercial and public interest stations operating in the national territory.

ECUADOR: Wave of attacks on Ecuador news sites before election

IPI: Five outlets taken down in less than 72 hours following numerous digital assaults

MEXICO: Telecommunications and Broadcasting grew more than 13% in the third term of 2016 (Spanish)

Grupo Fórmula: El Instituto Federal de Telecomunicaciones (IFT), agregó, que a septiembre del 2016 ambos sectores contribuyeron con más de 275 mil empleos en el país.

REGIONAL: Latin America’s community radio – a key service but vulnerable

RSF: Violence and fear are an integral part of the lives of many Latin American radio programme hosts, who are sometimes even at risk within their studios. Local radio stations are particularly exposed, especially those that are far from major urban centres.

ISRAEL: Netanyahu in New Drive to Delay Public Broadcaster’s Launch

Haaretz: Sources say aides preparing legislation to push back 
launch date, now set for April 30.

QATAR: Huawei’s media cloud to house Al Jazeera’s analog content

Arab News: Huawei and Al Jazeera Media Network have entered a non-binding memorandum of understanding to explore possible avenues of cooperation to transform the network’s online platform using media cloud solutions.

TURKEY: Turkey pressures media ahead of Erdogan referendum

Deutsche Welle: There are serious questions about whether journalists opposed to expanded presidential powers for Recep Tayyip Erdogan will have their voices squelched. The opposition says the space for debate is already being squeezed.

TURKEY: Will digital platforms revolutionize Turkish TV series?


REGIONAL: Media Use in the Middle East, 2016

NorthWestern University Qatar & Doha FIlm Institute: A six-nation survey by Northwestern University in Qatar, in partnership with Doha Film Institute

CANADA: The public broadcaster’s role in the fake news era

Policy Options: CBC/Radio-Canada’s high-quality, public-service journalism is more vital than ever.

CANADA: Climate change as reported in the media

The Concordian: Canadian social activists gathered at McGill University on Thursday evening to discuss how climate change is reported on in the Canadian media and whether the coverage is effective. The six guests, who all work in the media, answered questions from the audience.

US: Spectrum auction nets nearly $35M for two Pennsylvania stations

Current: WITF-TV in Harrisburg, Pa., will use $25 million in spectrum auction proceeds to bankroll three new initiatives, including a possible statewide news organization.

US: To truly serve the public, community stations must apply standards for what’s said on-air

Current: There is an active and robust debate within community radio about what the First Amendment allows in relation to use of the public airwaves. One common argument is that freedom of speech means you can say or play whatever you want on the air…

US: US TV spectrum auction ends with stations banking billions

Rapid TV News

US: WVPB Friends, Foundation Chairs on Proposal to Eliminate State’s Public Broadcasting Funding

WV Public Broadcasting: In his proposed budget, Governor Justice proposes the elimination of all state funding for West Virginia Public Broadcasting.

Digital security tips for journalists

IJnet: With journalists facing more risks to their digital security than ever, here’s a look at some of the essential steps for keeping yourself secure online.

Media Ownership, Market Realities and regulatory responses

European Audiovisual Observatory

Radio has never been more necessary

BBC Media Action: On World Radio Day, Caroline Nursey, BBC Media Action’s Executive Director discusses the ongoing importance of radio in a fast-changing digital world.

Radio: the Original Social Media

Inter Press Service: Interview with Media & International Development academic Dr. Martin Scott about the social aspect of radio that is often overlooked.

Radio – last bulwark of media freedom and independence

RSF: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) pays tribute to radio’s contribution to the fight for media freedom and urges support for exile radio stations that uphold the right to news and information of peoples subjected to the most extreme situations.

Using sports broadcasting to build listeners

Radio Today: Building and maintaining an audience is the most fundamental challenge faced by any broadcaster, commercial or community. Forget advertising revenue, what’s the point of creating a body of work if there is no-one to appreciate it?

VR device shipments to reach 110m by 2021

Digital TV Europe: VR device shipments will reach a total of 110 million by 2021, with the industry to benefit from a “swath of new and compelling content choices”, according to ABI Research.

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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: Alan Levine/Creative Commons