Thursday, 2 November 2017

Media Quotes of the Week: From the countries where the killers of journalists get away with murder to sex pest politicians and the press

Elisabeth Witchel, Campaign to Protect Journalists' Impunity Campaign consultant: "Impunity in the murders of journalists can be an intractable cycle stretching over a decade or more, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists' 10th annual Global Impunity Index, a ranking of countries where journalists are murdered and their killers go free. Seven countries on this year's index have been listed every year since the index launched a decade ago--including Somalia, which is the worst country for unsolved murders for the third year in a row. Impunity thrives in conflict environments, where powerful actors often use violent intimidation to control media coverage, while weak-to-nonexistent law and order increases the likelihood of attacks."

Among the findings from CPJ's data on murdered journalists:
  • Four countries on this year's index-India, Mexico, Nigeria, and the Philippines-are on the governing council of the Community of Democracies, a coalition dedicated to upholding and strengthening democratic norms.
  • About 93 percent of murder victims are local reporters. The majority cover politics and corruption in their home countries.
  • Political groups, including Islamic State and other extremist organizations, are the suspected perpetrators in one third of murder cases. Government and military officials are considered the leading suspects in about a quarter of the murders.
  • In the past 10 years, around 30 percent of murdered journalists were first taken captive-higher than the historical average of 22 percent since CPJ began tracking in 1992. The majority of those taken captive are tortured, sending a chilling message to the victims' colleagues.

Caroline Cadwalladr in the Observer on the links between Trump, Assange, Bannon and Farage: "(You got this? Farage visited Trump, then Assange, then Rohrabacher. Rohrabacher met Don Trump’s Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya. Then Assange. And is now trying to close the circle with Trump.) In these post-truth times, journalists are fighting the equivalent of a firestorm with a bottle of water and a wet hankie. We desperately need help. We need public pressure. We need parliament to step up and start asking proper questions. There may be innocent answers to all these questions. Let’s please just ask them."

Nigel Farage@Nigel_Farage on Twitter: "Ridiculous claims in The Guardian are fake news. There is no grand conspiracy - they are just desperate.'

Emily Bell in the Guardian on political advertising on social media: "In getting to grips with this problem, politicians and the media are realising that the way we think and talk about different types of messages has been well and truly broken. Social media has made a practice – and a fortune – out of erasing traditional boundaries between different types of material. Where once we had propaganda, press releases, journalism and advertising, we now have “content”. Where once we had direct marketing, display advertising and promotions, now we have “monetisation”. Where we once had media owners, ad agencies and clients, now we have “partners”. Who could possibly object to partners monetising their content? It sounds so mutually beneficial and efficient. On the other hand neo-Nazis paying to target pensioners with racist propaganda has a less wholesome ring to it."

FBI memo released on the assassination of President John Kennedy on a tip-off received by the Cambridge News, as reported by BBC News: "The caller said only that the Cambridge News reporter should call the American Embassy in London for some big news and then hung up. After the word of the President's death was received the reporter informed the Cambridge police of the anonymous call and the police informed MI5. The important point is that the call was made, according to MI5 calculations, about 25 minutes before the President was shot. The Cambridge reporter had never received a call of this kind before, and MI5 state that he is known to them as a sound and loyal person with no security record."

Tim Shipman in the Sunday Times [£]: "One man who is now a serving cabinet minister placed his hand on the thigh of a senior female journalist in full view of his frontbench colleagues at a party conference dinner some years ago and announced: 'God, I love those tits'... A Liberal Democrat peer’s career is also in danger after inviting a succession of female journalists to lunch while insisting that they wear knee-high boots and short skirts.”

Julia Hartley-Brewer‏ @JuliaHB1 on Twitter: "This "incident" happened in 2002. No one was remotely upset or distressed by it. My knees remain intact."

Dan Hodges@DPJHodges on Twitter: "Here's something Labour could do to show they take sex assault allegations seriously. Expel members abusing journalist who report it."

Michael White on The Media Show, via Guido Fawkes: “The power doesn’t all lie on one side; clever, attractive young women looking for stories. They can play the power game to poor old, ugly backbenchers with bad breath… No, I'm not saying it's their fault, they are predators.”

Kate McCann‏ @KateEMcCann on Twitter: "So, according to @michaelwhite, as a female lobby journalist I am a "predator" who tricks "poor old ugly backbenchers" to get stories ...As if it's not hard enough to be taken seriously as a woman working in politics without senior male journalists saying this stuff. Furious."


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