Category Archives: writing
May 3rd is World Press Freedom Day; a day designated by the United Nations to recognize and celebrate the fundamental principles of press freedom. This year’s conference originally scheduled the last weekend in April at the World Forum in The Hague has been postponed until October, in the same location.
UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization), headquartered in Paris, is launching the 2020 global campaign on media and social media channels focusing on Journalism without Fear or Favour with special emphasis on:
- Safety of Woman and Men Journalists and Media Workers
- Independent and Professional Journalism free from Political and Commercial Influence
- Gender Equality in All Aspects of the Media
Proclaimed in December 1993 by the UN General Assembly, World Press Freedom Day acts as a reminder to governments of the need to respect their commitment to freedom of the press. It is also a day for media professionals to reflect about current issues surrounding press freedom and professional ethics.
The stated purpose of the World Press Freedom Day is to celebrate the fundamental principles of press freedom, assess the state of press freedom throughout the world, defend the media from attacks on their independence, and to pay tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
World Press Freedom Day was chosen to highlight freedom of expression as a fundamental human right. As agreed by the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, Article 19 says “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.”
Access to information and media freedom contribute to human empowerment, which in turn helps people gain control over their lives and their communities. These are achieved through access to fair, accurate, and unbiased information, representing many opinions. The ability to have unfettered access to information and to relay it throughout their community allows active collective participation. These freedoms must be protected by rule of law and the populace must be educated in the information literacy that supports civic engagement by the citizens of all countries allowed into the United Nations.
Book available at WCPL:
War on words: who should protect journalists? by Joanne M. Lisosky and Jennifer R. Henrichsen (323.445 LIS)