Thursday, 3 January 2019

Media Quotes of the Week: From media death toll shows a profound global crisis of press freedom to we must stand up for journalists wherever they are

The Washington Post in a leader "THE DEBATE triggered by the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was exceptional in part because, by some measures, his case was not unusual. The Post contributing columnist, who was assaulted, suffocated and dismembered by a hit squad in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, was just one of dozens of journalists around the world who were murdered in 2018 because of their work. Hundreds more are imprisoned. The growing climate of violence and intimidation directed against the media recently prompted the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) to describe “a profound global crisis of press freedom.”

The International Federation of Journalists in a statement: "This year’s roll call of loss of lives to violence includes 84 journalists, cameramen, fixers and technicians who died in targeted killings, bomb attacks and cross fire incidents. Ten other media staff members who worked as drivers, protection officers and a sales assistant also lost their lives...The IFJ list for 2018 paints a situation of on-going safety crisis in journalism, which was highlighted by the cruel murder of the Washington Post columnist and Saudi national, Jamal Khashoggi, who was killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on 2 October."

IFJ President Philippe Leruth on the 2018 death toll of journalists: “These brazen acts of violence in utter disregard to human life have brought to an abrupt end the short lived decrease in journalists’ killings recorded over the last three year. Once again, the IFJ is asking United Nations' Members States to adopt at their general Assembly the Convention on the security and protection of journalists which the IFJ presented to diplomatic missions at the UN in New York last October. This Convention, supported by the profession as a whole, is a concrete response to crimes committed against journalists in full impunity.”

David Yelland @davidyelland on Twitter: "Why is most of the coverage of the poor people in boats in the channel from OUR point of view not the point of view of those desperate men, women and CHILDREN? Where is our compassion at Christmas?"

One of BBC media editor Amol Rajan's predictions for 2019: "The Cairncross Review won't save a single local newspaper. That's not to say it won't be useful. Dame Frances Cairncross is clever, pragmatic and instinctively on the side of journalists: but her experience attests to the fact that, in some industries, the internet has created problems for which there is no solution."

From the Independent:"Newly released Cabinet papers reveal John Major told his ministers to avoid attending a “jamboree” for Rupert Murdoch, only to have his home secretary Michael Howard go anyway after refusing to catch a “diplomatic cold” as a polite excuse for not turning up. Mr Howard was at the time suspected of being one of the “bastards” referred to by Mr Major while venting his frustrations about three unnamed Eurosceptic cabinet ministers in off-the-record remarks picked up by TV microphones in July 1993." 

Sam Wallace @SamWallaceTel on Twitter: "[Jurgen] Klopp on journalists (and our questions about whether LFC can win the title). ‘That’s an easy job. I would love to be in your situation [*thinks for a moment*] - but still earn the money I earn’."

From the Washington PostThe numbers are astonishing. In the first eight months of his presidency, President Trump made 1,137 false or misleading claims, an average of five a day. In October, as he barnstormed the country holding rallies in advance of the midterm elections, the president made 1,205 claims — an average of 39 a day.Combined with the rest of his presidency, that adds up to a total of 7,546 claims through Dec. 20, the 700th day of his term in office, according to The Fact Checker’s database that analyzes, categorizes and tracks every suspect statement uttered by the president."

John Kampfner in The Times [£]: "Jeremy Hunt’s intention to make Brexit Britain a beacon in defence of freedom of expression is both a problem and an opportunity...The initiative, however, will have conviction only if it is consistent. That means not just calling out countries where it is easy and opportune, such as Putin’s Russia and the Burmese generals. Will we really risk the wrath of China? Most countries are now too scared of its economic might. What about Bahrain, the UAE or Saudi Arabia? Arguably the biggest global threat to freedom of expression comes from Donald Trump. Not only does he humiliate and threaten reporters but in so doing he has empowered dictators. Every time he attacks journalists, or praises those who harm them, our government must denounce him. Free expression is a principle, not a bargaining chip. For any campaign to convince, it needs to apply to one and all."


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