Press freedom

In Burma, a short reprieve expected for newspapers

A brief recap of the media in the country following recent eases on press restrictions. Earlier this year, the government granted the first licenses to private daily newspapers in decades and the weekly journal market is thriving. “In Burma, publishers can survive for longer than in other regional countries because the newspaper market is still […]

Egypt’s state-run newspaper launched a website to shake up the status quo, but what is its future?

Al Bawaba, the upstart website of the state-owned Al Ahram newspaper, “is suited to its youthful, digital-era audience — the same storied brand, but with more Western-style habits, nonstop coverage, and fewer limits on what is considered fit to post,” writes Miriam Berger. But following the revolution, and the coup, its future remains uncertain as […]

A court ruling is seen as a win for independent media in Malaysia

Malaysia’s appeals court ruled that popular news portal Malaysiakini, which is often critical of government policies, has the right to publish a print edition. The government had argued that another print daily in an already-crowded newspaper industry might confuse readers. While Malaysia’s constitution gives citizens the right to freedom of speech, it imposes limits with […]

A study attempts to define journalists, but should we define acts of journalism instead?

A study out of the Missouri School of Journalism tries to answer the question “Who is a journalist?” by looking at definitions from three domains — academic, legal, industry — for commonalities. The unifying definition the authors came up with is: “A journalist is someone employed to regularly engage in gathering, processing, and disseminating (activities) […]

Seven international newspapers have urged the queen not to sign the royal charter to establish a new UK press regulator

The seven signatories, including the World Association of Newspapers & News Publishers and FIPP, the worldwide magazine media association, said the royal charter backed by politicians would have a “chilling impact” on UK journalism and be used by foreign governments as an excuse to “muzzle the press” in their own countries.

UK’s top prosecutor defends journalists who break law in public interest

Britain’s most senior prosecutor, Keir Starmer, is sympathetic to journalists who may break the law when trying to report on national security. “We’ve got to recognise that in the course of journalism, journalists will rub up against the criminal law … We would assess where there was evidence of a criminal offence, whether the public […]

“It is not clear that British politicians understand the meaning of a free press”

In the U.S., much light has been shined on the First Amendment, a possible shield law for the press and privacy and security concerns all at once. Meanwhile, in the U.K., the press lacks an equivalent to the First Amendment, notable following the reporting from Snowden’s leaks. “There are practically no voices in Congress calling […]

How TV finally returned to Afghanistan after 30 years of censorship

Eva Orner, director of the film The Network about the founding of the first independent television station to operate in Afghanistan, talks about how the rapid growth of technology and media, particularly in urban areas like Kabul, have influenced many young Afghans coming of age after the fall of the Taliban.

Editors from around the world respond to criticism of the Guardian’s NSA reporting

Responding to an allegation from the Daily Mail that described the Guardian as “the paper that helps Britain’s enemies” by publishing the Snowden NSA leaks, more than 25 current and former editors from around the world speak out to support the Guardian.

In Egypt, the military’s censorship exceeds what happened under ousted president Morsi

Under the interim military-backed regime, censorship is back in Egypt, writes Jared Malsin. Ten media organizations have been shuttered or pulled from the airwaves, including Al Jazeera’s Egypt affiliate and Turkey’s state-owned Turkish Radio and Television Corporation. In the two months after the military ousted Morsi, censorship returned, five journalists were killed and 80 were […]