Monthly Archives: January 2012
CIMA and Internews held an event titled “Can Media Development Make Aid More Effective?” today, featuring Daniel Kaufmann of the Brookings Institution, Mark Nelson of the World Bank, and Tara Susman-Peña of Internews. It was moderated by Sina Odugbemi of the World Bank.
Susman-Peña talked about the Internews and World Bank Institute project Media Map, found at http://www.MediaMapResource.org. The Media Map project brings together comparable data on how media, technology, and communication intersect with traditional development statistics. She said that one of the findings of the project is that the cultural concept of what media is for varies by country and can be a strong barrier to media development.
Nelson, addressing media development’s place in the aid effectiveness debate, said that one of the major problems with aid is a lack of country leadership and ownership. Media development should be included more in discussions about development in general. Improving the skills of journalists won’t reduce the number of those arrested or killed; changing the media environment requires a change in the political environment.
Kaufmann looked at media aid and press freedom and found that there is less press freedom in the world than there was 15 years ago. Media aid hasn’t improved the environment in countries with low levels of press freedom. However, he said that if done in a smart way, media development can help. But what is media development, he wondered, as there are many definitions for it. The focus should be on media freedom, and while media freedom alone may not be sufficient, it is necessary for successful media development.
Discussion on Twitter was lively. Here is a sampling of tweets about the event:
@Theginnie: Kaufmann: Does media development matter? Yes, when done smartly.
@_anna_shaw: Kaufmann: ICTs – even cheap internet – has enormous leveraging potential for media development and governance.
@boomshahkolaka: Kaufmann: media aid recipients are largely countries that have no press freedom
@NEDemocracy: Kaufmann: If most media assistance goes to “not free” countries, are those countries improving? Generally no
@Theginnie: Kaufmann: what journalists are not lacking is training, they can train us
@CIMA_Media: Kaufmann: media development should place freedom as center stage.
@Theginnie: Literacy rates in Mali are at 26% media development should pair with education
@info_innovation: Cultural understandings of what media is for can act as barriers to changing it. Recognizing this is crucial for development.
@Theginnie: Nelson: organization like the world bank that have an effect on polices reform need to be in conversations of media development
@Theginnie: Susman-Pena: Kenya mobile phones and radio for governance emerging but needs more study
@Theginnie: Nelson Mandela made a huge impact by saying you need a free media for development
@jonathanmarks: Question for Tara. does your mapping include looking at the overlap between social media, mobile and traditional radio and TV?
@DLA_FA: Insufficient selectivity in dev aid may be tied to lack of valid, reliable, and timely governance data.
Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter! @CIMA_Media
I’ll never forget it. I received a text message and raced over to meet a friend at a bar on a dark street in the Hamra district of Beirut. The place was packed with young and old alike, their faces stretched with emotion as they experienced a sensation unfamiliar to much of the Arab World–that of hope. A massive screen had been set up in a corner as if we were going to watch a World Cup match. Indeed, the anticipation felt much like that of the start of an exciting sporting event, and the subsequent deflation of spirit that followed was as disappointing as a defeat. But this was far more important than any football game. This was freedom at stake.
Hosni Mubarak did not resign that night as much of the world had expected, but his defiance was only to last another day. The man who had ruled Egypt for three decades, to whom we had referred to as Pharaoh Mubarak, finally gave in to the demands of people who only wanted the most basic of things in life: freedom, dignity, a voice.
Tunisia may have sparked what has come to be known as the Arab Spring, but it was Egypt that burned images of revolution into our minds. Events that led to that night began a year ago today, a day when hope burst forth from the souls of those who had been shackled by oppression for most or all of their existence. But the year has been wrought with setbacks, worry, crackdowns, and death. The media environment has been just one of the many victims of the oppressive tactics of the ruling Supreme Council of the Allied Forces (SCAF) that took the promises of the revolution and kept them for itself.
On the day after Mubarak resigned, Egyptian state television broadcasters apologized on air for lying to the people in their coverage of the revolution, blaming the state for ordering them to report a pro-state narrative, even showing an old video of an empty Tahrir Square. The position of information minister was eliminated in late February 2011, making Egypt, Lebanon, and Qatar the only countries in the Arab world without such a position. Soon after, however, state media returned to the role of propaganda machine, pushing a narrative that further protests were part of a foreign plot, a theme they would continue to promulgate as the SCAF moved to consolidate its power. The National Military Media Committee was created as SCAF’s propaganda arm to counteract what it called “biased coverage” against the military, and the post of information minister was reestablished. Protesters were demonized and portrayed as traitors to the revolution, and democracy activists became agents of foreign interference.
In this atmosphere, Maikel Nabil Sanad, an atheist who was supportive of Israel, was arrested in a calculated move by the military to set an example for other activists. He had written a post on his blog titled “The army and people wasn’t ever one hand,” which enumerated the military’s acts of oppression. “In fact, the revolution has so far managed to get rid of the dictator but not the dictatorship,” he wrote at a time when the military was viewed as heroic for its role in overthrowing Mubarak. On March 28, 2011, he was arrested on charges of “insulting the military.” Despite undertaking a hunger strike in protest of the unlawful detention, Nabil did not receive much support because of his views, and in the international community, his arrest went virtually unnoticed.
Nowhere were the effects of state media propaganda more devastating than at the Maspero media complex in Cairo, when Coptic Christian protesters were portrayed as aggressors, inciting violence that led to the deaths of 27 civilians.
Citizen journalism and social media came to define the movement that the world witnessed in real time, and it is what has kept the spirit of revolution alive. While the Internet may not have been the reason for the movement’s birth, there is no denying it had a major influence on Mubarak’s ouster and the continuing protests. Alla Abdel Fattah, the activist blogger who was arrested last autumn and who was instrumental in rallying support for Nabil, has played a big role in awakening the world to the oppressive tactics of the SCAF. Wael Ghonim, founder of the We Are All Khaled Said Facebook page, and Wael Abbas, another well-known blogger, were both detained at various times. Egyptian-American journalist Mona Eltahawy’s arms were broken when she was detained late last year.
The work of Egyptian citizen journalists can be found on the Mosireen YouTube channel. Mosireen is a media collective of filmmakers and citizen journalists that has become one of the most popular non-profit YouTube channels in the world. It has published videos from the revolution and was instrumental in showing the world the truth about the Maspero massacre. Sites like Mosireen show that state media can no longer hide the truth from the world.
The pressure that citizen journalism has put on state media is showing some results. Last week, employees at the state-owned Nile News Channel began a sit-in to demand an immediate end to censorship and to push for reforms in the state media sector. The protest was sparked by a ban on broadcasting the documentary Tahrir Square, which shows the military’s brutal treatment of the January 25 protesters. It is worth mentioning that Nile News Channel is located in the Maspero building where the Coptic protesters were murdered last October.
The SCAF has made some concessions in the days leading up to today’s anniversary. Nabil has been released, along with nearly 2,000 other prisoners. The Supreme Press Council is currently drafting proposals to amend freedom of expression laws and plans to form a committee of professional journalists to help develop mechanisms to “free the media from government domination.” However, many activists believe these moves have been designed to ease tension and are not long-term changes.
Today, hundreds of thousands of Egyptians gathered at Tahrir demanding the same human rights they wanted a year ago. They have sipped from the cup of liberty and seem determined not to give up until freedom is theirs.
For Egypt’s State Media, the Revolution Has Yet to Arrive – Freedom House
Watch “The Egyptian Revolution,” a multimedia documentary produced by TrustMedia, the media development wing of the Thomson Reuters Foundation (TRF).
Nile News Channel’s sit-in:
Tornadoes touching down in ice storms. Tsunamis wiping out cities. Drought and famine destroying populations. All of these are stories the media has had to report in recent times. Journalists need to know how to write about these events, and training programs on environmental reporting are popping up in universities and media training centers across the warming globe.
The Society for Environmental Journalists’ website contains a wealth of information about the environment and governmental policies. Numerous universities have environmental journalism programs, including the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism at Michigan State University, the Center for Environmental Journalism at University of Colorado at Boulder, and the Knight Program in Science and Environmental Journalism at Berkley.
Distance learning is becoming increasingly important in the realm of global media development. One of these distance learning initiatives is an online course on covering climate change. The course is an initiative by Internews and the Poynter Institute and is part of the Earth Journalism Network program. The course is designed to provide non-expert reporters and citizen journalists a firm grounding in the science and policy underlying climate change.
Poynter Institute, through its online learning site NewsU, provided the technical expertise in building the course, while Internews is responsible for the content and subject expertise. The site went live in 2009 and there are plans to translate it into Spanish in the near future. Internews is teaming up with regional and national media associations to spread the word about the courses to their members.
What journalists learn from the course:
- How climate change affects various beats in a news organization
- Scientific explanations of how the earth’s climate has changed through time are always subject to revision
- Proposed solutions to global warming and its effects
- How to write an unbiased story
- Examples of stories covering climate change
- Tips, such as where to find resources
As nine of the last ten winters have been the warmest since we began keeping records 130 years ago, there is solid evidence the earth is warming. Because of this, we can be sure we will continue to read about massive storms and tragic disasters. With programs like that of the Earth Journalism Network, journalists can be prepared to write these stories.
Wikipedia, Reddit, and hundreds of other websites are dark today. Google has blacked out its logo. These steps are in opposition to the controversial bills SOPA (Stop Online Privacy Act) and PIPA (Protect Intellectual Property Act) that stand before the United States Congress. Facebook and other social networking sites also have stated their opposition to the bills.
What are SOPA and PIPA? SOPA is the House of Representatives version of an online piracy bill, and PIPA is the Senate version. Both bills allow intellectual property owners to shut down foreign websites for copyright infringement. The offended party could demand these sites be removed from search engines, denied payments from sites like Paypal, or block ISPs from allowing visitors to the sites.
Take a close look at SOPA. How does it compare to similar ideas in other countries? A few examples:
SPAIN–This month, Spain passed the Sinde law giving the Spanish government broad authority to impose strict penalties on website owners who have copyrighted material on their websites. Unlike SOPA, the law, which is named after Culture Minister Angeles Gonzalez-Sinde, targets only those who make money from copyrighted content. Copyright owners can complain to a government commission that can issue and order to block the website.
FRANCE–France passed the HADOPI law in 2009. Known as the “Three Strikes Piracy Law,” HADOPI cuts off internet access to users who have three violations of piracy in defiance of a European Parliament law specifically outlawing cutting off the internet without a court order. The legislation created the Haute Autorite pour la Diffusion des Oeuvres et la Protection des droits sur Internet (High Authority for the Diffusion of Works and the Protection of Rights on the Internet) that has the power to send an email warning at the first violation, followed by a mailed letter. The third violation can lead to an interruption of Internet access for up to a year.
ITALY–The Supreme Court approved a verdict by a lower court that allowed ISPs to block The Pirate Bay website, a site that has seen numerous attempts by governments across the globe to block. In October 2011 the Italian government proposed a “wiretapping” bill that would give anyone who thinks he has been offended by content to challenge the website in question. Wikipedia Italy responded in protest by going blank.
DENMARK–Several court rulings have blocked access to sites accused of copyright infringement. These include the Pirate Bay and Allofmp3.com. In the Allofmp3.com case, the court ruled that ISPs are responsible for the traffic they route.
The United Nations Public Administration Network has a good summary of Internet censorship developments in 2011.
How are European governments and donors looking at international media development in developing countries?
Although the current economic and budgetary problems in Europe are likely to affect aid spending by some European governments, the largest donors in Europe (for example the European Commission, France, Germany and the UK) are still providing official development assistance (ODA).
One indication of donors’ continued yet modest interest in media support is that UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) fund has seen a modest growth from $1.83m in 2008, to $1.95m in 2009 and to $2.3m in 2011. Another is the growth of the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) line within the European Commission which is dedicated to the promotion of human rights and in which many typical media support projects can be found (e.g. NGOs defending freedom of speech; investigative journalism; freedom of information legislation; strengthening of civil society etc.). The EIDHR budget is growing year on year, projected to disburse $37.3m in 2011 and $51.7m in 2012.
A look at a sample of European countries:
Austria – In the words of an OECD Development Assistance Committee peer review, “the Austrian aid system is fragmented among many institutional actors. Austriadoes not have a consolidated ODA budget; rather at least eight separate ministries fund aid-related activities from their own budgets.” Tracking down a media development budget is consequently extremely difficult but there is evidence that, through its emphasis on governance and human rights, for which it gives over a third of its total budget, the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) indirectly shows a fairly strong commitment to media development: “Good governance [and] … democracy promotion is understood in a very broad sense, comprising participation in planning local infrastructure projects as much as training journalists or promoting free media.”
Belgium – Belgian aid is divided into several sectors one of which is ‘consolidation of society and conflict prevention’ but there is no mention of media development under this ‘topic’, nor in any of the other ‘topics’ covered on the Development Cooperation website. However, the OECD micro data shows several media-support projects.
Denmark – Denmark media support comes largely under the category of ‘Human rights and democratization’ which went from 58.3 million USD in 2008 to – 89.9 Million USD in 2009. In addition for the category ‘Public administration and civil society’ support went from 280.7 million USD in 2008 to 330.4 million USD in 2009. However no specific figure is given for media development.
France – Official Foreign Ministry strategy for 2011 states: “Cooperation policy will encourage access to free and pluralistic media by supporting the professionalization of [the] audiovisual sector.” But no budgetary commitments on the media sector are given, nor, indeed is it seen as a separate sector, and appears to be hidden within ‘encouraging the production and exchange of knowledge and culture.’ For the French Foreign Ministry aid and influence are one and the same, and audio-visuals are seen as a tool for both. The International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF) continues to be a major contributor to media support.
Germany – Although Germany has a Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), German ODA is split across several other organizations such as various large foundations such as the Konrad Adenhaur Foundation and other ministries. None of these bodies have a defined media development sector.
A recent survey of German media development cooperation came to the following conclusions:
“Few actors have a major media development budget. However, the investments in media assistance seem to be expanding…only seven organizations participating in this survey have a budget for media development which surpasses Euros 500.000. The Deutsche Welle Akademie (DWA) is by far the “biggest” player in the field.”
Netherlands – Dutch policy does not regard strengthening the media as a goal in itself, but “as a means of helping achieve overall development objectives and of strengthening other cultural and socioeconomic sectors. As such, support to the media [is] seen as an important factor in achieving results in the field of, for example, human rights, development, poverty reduction, democratization, accountability, good governance, peace building, conflict prevention and post-conflict interventions and humanitarian aid.” In 2010 the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs granted a subsidy for five programs that have “specific media components” running from 2011 -2015 entitled Connect4Change.
Portugal – Portugese ODA is currently decreasing due to its own economic difficulties. It also suffers from a fragmented ODA system. Within its fragmented ODA system there is no clear media development sector and there is little evidence of support in this area.
Switzerland -Switzerland continues its support for media development within the sector, which, within Swiss Development Corporation (SDC) is called “Access to information – essential for life” and is further articulated as follows:
“The free flow of information between the state, citizens, civil society, the media, etc. must be guaranteed. All sectors of society should be able to inform themselves freely and fully about all political, economic and social processes affecting them (“Transparency” principle) and to be able to express their opinions about these processes” … “The SDC supports projects in this [access to information] field around the world with a current allocation of around CHF 30 million [$34.7million USD].”
Sweden – Sweden’s total development aid budget for 2011 is about SEK 35,2 billion, which is one percent of GNI. About SEK 17,5 billion of this is administered by the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), and another SEK 10 billion is targeted to multilateral support decided upon by the Prime Minister’s Office but channeled through SIDA. SIDA has a strong track record on media support and in 2009 it was approximately USD 30 million.
United Kingdom – For media support, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) gives small grants such as journalism fellowships through its overseas embassies. But the Department for International Development (DFID) is still the biggest source of UK bilateral and multilateral aid. DFID has recently improved the way in which it publishes its statistics so that all projects currently receiving support around the world are posted on a publically accessible website. However, the difficulty inherent in obtaining figures about media support remains the same; media support is almost always hidden within other projects which invariably do not have ‘media’ in their titles.
 Presentation by Florence Lemoine-Mineury, NGO GRET, ‘French Media Assistance: Strategies and Lessons Learned’ at conference The Fourth Estate in Democracy Assistance, Forum medien und entwiclung and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, Schloss Eicholz, Cologne, Germany, November 2010.
Happy New Year!
Welcome to the official launch of the CIMA Media Blog, an information hub for media development, freedom of expression, citizen journalism, and media tools in the digital age. The CIMA Media Blog will serve as a multimedia, interactive space where media development specialists and policymakers can come to learn about events, reports, and other programs; share best practices and lessons learned; and get acquainted with others in the field.
You’ll find monthly updates about funding issues in media development, global media policy updates, regional and country highlights, and the latest studies and resources in the international media development field.
On Mondays CIMA Media Blog will publish #mediamonday, which includes interviews with media development practitioners, stories about their work, and advances, events, and innovations in the media development field.
CIMA encourages comments and discussion on posts to promote meaningful dialogue about media issues and media development. Readers are encouraged to share posts through Facebook, Twitter, and other social media.
Check out these posts:
Make sure to follow our RSS feed so you don’t miss a post, and please follow us on Twitter and Facebook for all the latest updates in international media development. Also, check out other CIMA resources:
Digital Media Mash Up – a weekly compilation of events, news articles, and research about digital media. An archive of the Digital Media Mash Up can be found on CIMA’s website at http://cima.ned.org/tools-and-resources/digital-media-mash. Sign up for the DMM here
Media News – a daily list of news articles on media development and press freedom. An archive of Media News articles is available at http://cima.ned.org/tools-and-resources/daily-media-news. Sign up for the Media News here.
CIMA’s website (www.cima.ned.org) contains a number of other resources for those interested in media development, including detailed country profiles examining the state of independent media around the world, an 1,100 items bibliographic database, a comprehensive list of media development organizations, full videos of CIMA events, and all of CIMA’s publications.
Highlights from the world of digital media. Sign up here for the full version of CIMA’s weekly Digital Media Mash Up.
Is Internet Access a Human Right?
Internet Access Is Not a Human Right
Vint Cerf: From the streets of Tunis to Tahrir Square and beyond, protests around the world last year were built on the Internet and the many devices that interact with it. Though the demonstrations thrived because thousands of people turned out to participate, they could never have happened as they did without the ability that the Internet offers to communicate, organize and publicize everywhere, instantaneously. (New York Times, 1/5)
Is Internet Access a Fundamental Human Right?
Should internet access be seen as a fundamental human right, in the same category as the right to free speech or clean drinking water? The United Nations says that it should, but in a New York Times op-ed, one of the fathers of the internet argues that it should not. Vint Cerf is the co-creator of the TCP/IP standard that the global computer network is built on, so when he says something about the impact of the internet it’s probably worth paying attention to. But is he right? And what are the implications if he is wrong? (GigaOM, 1/5)
Vint Cerf on Why Internet Access Is Not a Human Right (+ A Few More Reasons)
In an provocative oped in today’s New York Times, Vint Cerf, one of the pioneers of the Net who now holds the position “chief Internet evangelist” at Google, makes the argument for why “Internet Access Is Not a Human Right.” You won’t be surprised to hear that I generally agree. But there are two other issues Cerf fails to address. First, who or what pays the bill for classifying the Internet or broadband as a birthright entitlement? Second, what are the potential downsides for competition and innovation from such a move? (Tech Liberation Front, 1/5)
Top Trends to Watch in 2012
2011 was a big year for news in more ways than one. Reporters were amply tested in their coverage of big breaking news stories such as the death of Osama Bin Laden or Muammar Gaddafi, major disasters such as the Fukushima earthquake, and complex political unrest much of the Arab World. Meanwhile, newspapers continue to seek an effective digital business model, to tackle the challenges posed by social media and community involvement, to create innovative tablet applications and respond to ethical dilemmas. Looking forward to 2012, what can we expect? (Editors Weblog, 1/2)
Forecast for 2012: BBC Boss Predicts ‘First Truly Digital’ Olympics
Phil Fearnley, general manager of news and knowledge at BBC Future Media, predicts an explosive year for takeup of new technology as the Olympic games come to London. (The Guardian, 1/1)
Issues for 2012 #5: How Will Online News Be Organized?
Just ask the man who signs my paychecks… or at least, go back to October 2007 and ask Richard MacManus, the founder and EIC of this publication. He would tell you directly and succinctly that ReadWriteWeb is not a blog. That is, by the definition of that time, it’s not a one-man show. “ReadWriteWeb has evolved,” Richard wrote at the time, “into something different than a blog, which is traditionally thought of as the voice of a single person.” (Read Write Web, 1/3)
The Mobile Revolution Is Here
2011 saw smartphone and tablet shipments outpace computer purchases for the first time and the world’s largest search engine spend over $12 billion to snatch one of the world’s largest mobile device manufacturers. We met Apple’s Siri, watched BlackBerry fall from the summit of mobile dominance, and witnessed vicious mobile-patent gamesmanship over devices and operating systems. With 20% of all searches being conducted from mobile devices, the mobile revolution is upon us. (MediaPost, 1/5)
INDIA: Is 2012 the Year for India’s Internet?
It’s estimated as many as 121 million Indians are logged onto the internet. It is a sizeable number, but still a relatively small proportion of the country’s 1.2 billion population. Predictions suggest the ways Indians use the internet for business and pleasure will change even further in the next year. (BBC, 1/3)
NIGERIA: Nigeria Yearns for Broadband Internet in 2012
Over one year after the landing of two additional undersea broadband cable networks – Main-One and Glo-One in the country, the penetration and cost of broadband internet services have remained hardly accessible. This is despite the fact that internet penetration in the country has catapulted from 10 to 40 million content of the population in a few short years. The reason for the poor broadband penetration, is that although more capacity has landed at the country’s coastline, the infrastructure to take it into the hinterland is largely lacking. (Business Day, 1/3)
Social Media Usage in Russia and Eurasia
Statistics from Focus, December 2011 (Russian)
Global Social Technographics Update 2011: US And EU Mature, Emerging Markets Show Lots Of Activity
Last month George Colony, CEO of Forrester, talked about a “Social Thunderstorm” at the LeWeb conference in Paris. He argued that social is running out of hours and running out of people. What does that mean? Well, the second one is easy: The vast majority of consumers around the world who have access to a computer use social media. And the first one? George goes on to say that Americans are spending more time on social media than volunteering, praying, talking on the phone, emailing, or even exercising. With so many people spending so much time on social media, it is crucial for companies to understand how their customers use social media. We just released our newest report, Social Media Adoption In 2011, which reveals the latest trends. (Forrester, 1/4)
HUNGARY: New Study: “Hungarian Media Laws in Europe: An Assessment of the Consistency of Hungary’s Media Laws with European Practices and Norms”
A new CMCS study led by researcher Amy Brouillette analyses the consistency of the Hungarian media regulations with European practices and norms. It addresses a key international policy debate regarding the conformity of Hungary’s new media legislation to European and EU media-regulation standards. The study also contributes to the ongoing policy making process regarding Hungary’s media laws—particularly in light of the recent rulings by Hungary’s Constitutional Court which requires several provisions to be amended by 31 May 2012—as well as contributing to the debate around other areas of concern that have been raised by the European Commission, European lawmakers, and domestic and international stakeholders. (Center for Media and Communication Studies, 1/5)
Global Censorship Update – January 2012
View Global Censorship Update – January 2012 in a larger map
They faced the worst human beings have to suffer–bullets, bombs, kidnappings, torture, murder. They sacrificed everything for the truth, a concept reviled by dictators and criminals all over the world.
The end of the year provides the opportunity to look back and consider just how many journalists have been killed in the line of duty in search of the truth. The murderers can be government officials, criminal groups, military officials, or businessmen seeking to prevent news of their corruption and misdeeds from reaching the public, marking reporters as targets for assassination.
As 2011 waned, at least six organizations published annual reports on the number of journalists killed across the globe:
- The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) reported that 45 journalists were killed under a confirmed motive, meaning their deaths were found to be work-related. In addition to these deaths, five media workers were killed, and 35 journalists were classified as “motive unconfirmed” while CPJ continues to investigate. The deadliest countries were Pakistan, Iraq, Libya, and Mexico.
- Reporters Without Borders (RSF in its French initials) also tracks the deaths of journalists. In 2011, its records indicate that 66 journalists were killed. The same countries as those in the CPJ report were found to be the most dangerous.
- The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN) reported that 64 media employees were killed.
- The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) reported 106 deaths journalists and media personnel killed.
- The International News Safety Institute (INSI) lists 124 journalists and media staff killed.
- The International Press Institute’s “Death Watch” reports 103 journalists killed in 2011.
The disparity in these numbers results from definitions and methodology. CPJ has a strict approach to defining whose deaths were related to their work as journalists, and many on its unconfirmed list are included on the broader lists of the other organizations. The IFJ list includes drivers and other media workers. INSI counts accidental or health-related deaths.
The lack of effective monitoring systems is another reason for the disparity in numbers. It is often difficult to determine whether the death of a journalist happened in the line of duty or was a natural or accidental occurrence.
These factors make it difficult to say with precision how many journalists were killed last year for trying to report the truth. But whichever number is right, it is far too high.
For more information on journalist safety, see CIMA’s 2009 report Under Attack: Practicing Journalism in a Dangerous World.