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Zimbabwe court convicts, fines New York Times freelancer

Zimbabwe court convicts, fines New York Times freelancer

A Zimbabwean freelance reporter working for the New York Times was convicted and fined after he was accused of obtaining fake accreditation documents for two of the U.S. newspaper's journalists on a visit, his lawyer said. Jeffrey Moyo, a 37-year-old Zimbabwean, spent three weeks in jail last year and his trial started in January. The New York Times has denied the charges, saying the accreditation of its journalists Christina Goldbaum and Joao Silva by a Zimbabwe Media Commission official was above board. The two American journalists were expelled from Zimbabwe. "Jeff has been convicted and sentenced to pay 200,000 Zimbabwe…
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Tunisia military prosecutors investigate journalist for ‘harming public order’

Tunisia military prosecutors investigate journalist for ‘harming public order’

TAREK AMARA TUNISIAN military prosecutors said they had begun investigating a journalist on suspicion of "harming public order" for saying the president had asked the army to close a powerful labour union's headquarters, and a witness said the reporter had been arrested. The journalist, Salah Attia, told Al Jazeera on Saturday that President Kais Saied had asked the army to close the headquarters of the UGTT union and put political leaders under house arrest, but that the army had refused. "Police in civilian clothes arrested Attia in a cafe in the suburb of Ibn Khaldoun in the capital," the witness,…
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Ethiopian rights body seeks release of 16 detained journalists

Ethiopian rights body seeks release of 16 detained journalists

ETHIOPIA'S state-appointed human rights body called for the release of 16 journalists and media personnel after new arrests in recent days in the capital Addis Ababa and the restive region of Amhara. Press watchdogs and rights groups say Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed's government is increasingly intimidating the media and harassing opponents as it seeks to quell unrest in regions. Ethiopian authorities have been particularly cracking down in Amhara and Oromiya regions recently. They justify arrests of media personnel by accusing them of siding with rebels. In the latest round-up, Temesgen Desalegn of Feteh Magazine and Yayesew Shimelis of Ethio Forum…
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Africa’s media is under siege

Africa’s media is under siege

CHURCHILL OTIENO THREE issues stand out for us as we mark this year’s World Press Freedom Day, whose theme is “Journalism under digital siege”. First, many governments in Africa still think they can achieve economic progress and political developments, including democracy, without a free media. But economic principles would hardly be sound without free flow of ideas and information. We must therefore help them see this reality. Free expression facilitates and enables economic growth. Secondly, a lot of value created by the media on our content is exported outside Africa by Big Tech. We must find ways that allow Big…
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World Press Freedom faces a perfect storm

World Press Freedom faces a perfect storm

FARHANA HAQUE RAHMAN THE UN will be commemorating World Press Freedom Day on May 3. The following article is part of a series of IPS features and opinion pieces focused on media freedom globally. Farhana Haque Rahman Empowered by a global pandemic and the drumbeats of war, the strongest despots are growing more despotic, and criminal cartels even more brazen in their violence. Extremists of various hues are also stepping out of the shadows. Just when the world most needs press freedom to thrive, the liberties that societies only really treasure when they are emasculated are coming under more pressure…
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Misogynistic online abuse poses major threat to women journalists

Misogynistic online abuse poses major threat to women journalists

TARA CAREY THE writer is Head of Media at the international women’s rights organisation Equality Now The UN will be commemorating World Press Freedom Day on May 3. The following article is part of a series of IPS features and opinion pieces focused on media freedom globally. Women journalists around the world are experiencing an exponential increase in misogynistic online abuse, which poses a grave risk to women’s media participation in the digital age. This is a grievous form of censorship that seeks to silence women, stifle free expression, and close down critical journalism by undermining their ability to engage freely…
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From message to violence: what to watch for in the media ahead of Kenya’s elections

From message to violence: what to watch for in the media ahead of Kenya’s elections

AS Kenya heads towards elections, concerns about the outbreak of electoral violence tend to rise. Existing research has offered several explanations for the violence. These include weak political parties, perceptions that elections are high stakes for different communities, and land grievances. Authors ADITI MALIK, Assistant Professor, Political Science, College of the Holy Cross PHILIP ONGUNY, Associate Professor, Université Saint-Paul / Saint Paul University The evidence for these explanations is compelling. For example, the weakness of parties has meant that political patronage has usually trumped policy proposals in Kenya. In a related vein, grievances over the distribution of land have provided…
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Journalism has changed. Education must reflect the reality

Journalism has changed. Education must reflect the reality

FOR more than a century, journalism education prepared young people for the role of full-time professionals employed by sizeable news organisations. But the advertising-based business model that sustained journalism is collapsing because of new technology, and jobs of the old kind are becoming scarce. The educational model, too, must change to accommodate the new realities. Author FRANZ KRÜGER, Adjunct Professor of Journalism and Director of the Wits Radio Academy, University of the Witwatersrand Traditional media – particularly print – are in decline as audiences move online and revenue streams follow them to platform giants like Google and Facebook. As a…
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Saving journalism: views on how to pay for reliable information

Saving journalism: views on how to pay for reliable information

JOURNALISM globally faces a sustainability crisis. It largely stems from declining advertising revenue, loss of revenue to technology giants, control of news media by political actors and individuals with business interests, disinformation and dwindling public trust. Author THEODORA DAME ADJIN-TETTEY, Research Associate, School of Journalism and Madia Studies, Rhodes University, South Africa / Lecturer, Department of Communication Studies, University of Ghana, Rhodes University Twisting the knife in the wound, the financial pressure on media organisations has been worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic. In the US, for example, at least 21 local newspapers merged and about 1,400 newsroom staffers lost their…
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Egyptian activist Abdel Fattah jailed for five years

Egyptian activist Abdel Fattah jailed for five years

PROMINENT Egyptian activist Alaa Abdel Fattah was sentenced to five years in prison on Monday, a judicial source said, after being tried on charges of spreading fake news. Blogger Mohamed Ibrahim and lawyer Mohamed El-Baqer, who faced the same charges, were sentenced to four years. The three have been detained since September 2019. Abdel Fattah, a leading activist in the 2011 uprising that toppled president Hosni Mubarak after three decades in power, had previously been imprisoned for five years in 2014 and released in 2019. Abdel Fattah's family have complained about the conditions of his detention. "He is denied access…
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