World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


New Curbs on Free Expression Arise With New Technologies

New Curbs on Free Expression Have Surfaced With New Technologies – UN

New York, Mar 25 2014 - While technological progress and innovative business models have expanded opportunities for freedom expression, they have also allowed for new threats to emerge in the form of Internet censorship, filtering, blocking, and surveillance, warns the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Freedom of expression is essential to dignity, dialogue, democracy and sustainable development,” said UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, appealing for renewed commitment to support press freedom at the launch of the report in Stockholm earlier today.

“We need to act on the ground – to strengthen national legislative frameworks, to train journalists, to build capacity and advance media and information literacy. We must continue to support media independence by promoting professional standards and self-regulation,” she said.

The report, World Trends in Freedom of Expression and Media Development, hails the opportunities that new technologies have opened up, empowering individuals through unprecedented ways to access, produce and share media content across multiple platforms.

But at the same time, UNESCO warns in a press release, “the increasing control of online content by Internet intermediaries, such as search engines and social media networks, threatens transparency in the free flow of information and raises concerns about the “privatization of censorship.”

According to the report, journalists and online media actors face new threats related to their safety in the digital sphere.

With a special focus on global media and the gender dimensions of press freedom, the study was spearheaded by UNESCO, in partnership with an advisory group of 27 international experts from civil society and academia and with the support of the Government of Sweden. It analyses trends in media freedom worldwide since 2007 from four angles: freedom, pluralism, independence and the safety of journalists.

The report reveals that despite the continued economic dominance of a handful of companies in both traditional and online media, the vast expansion of information sources and platforms has positively impacted media pluralism. Nonetheless, press freedom “lost momentum in some regions that have experienced political transitions,” and the laws meant to protect it have not always been effectively implemented, UNESCO warns, adding that “direct and self-censorship remain challenges to journalists worldwide.”

Furthermore, while new business models have facilitated the emergence of independent reporters, for example through non-profit investigative journalistic organizations, the report denounces that “State or public advertising continue to affect independent reporting.”

The study applauds the growing awareness of the importance of journalists’ safety throughout the world since 2007, due in large part to the implementation of the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity.

However, the number of journalist killings has continued to rise. According to UNESCO’s data, 430 journalists were killed between 2007 and 2012, including 23 women, who face rising forms of intimidation and abuse, including sexual assault. Although conflict zones remain the most dangerous places for journalists, between 2007 and 2011 more were killed outside of these areas, and impunity for these crimes remains the norm, the report notes.

For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Ebola Cases Reaching Record Low

Highly contaminated waste is removed from an Ebola Treatment Unit and carried with caution to a disposal area, where it will be fed into an incinerator that burns it into ashes. Photo: WHO/R. Sørensen More>>

South Sudan: Pervasive Violence Against Healthcare

Juba, South Sudan, July 1, 2014 - Violence in hospitals and the destruction of medical facilities are denying medical services to many of South Sudan 's most vulnerable people, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) said today in a report, South Sudan Conflict: ... More>>

ALSO:

  • UN News - UNESCO chief denounces killing of journalists in South Sudan
  • Increasing Demand For Refined Products Will Increase Prices

    In last week's article I posted a chart from the International Energy Agency'srecent Oil Market Report that shows global demand for refined products catching up to supply by the 3rd quarter of this year. My opinion is that all of the analysts who are now ... More>>

    ALSO:

    Terrorist Attack On Hotel In Libyan Capital

    27 January 2015 – The United Nations Security Council today condemned in the strongest terms the deadly terrorist attack against the Corinthia Hotel in Tripoli, Libya, and underlined the need to bring the perpetrators, financiers and sponsors of such ... More>>

    ALSO:

    Malawi In Urgent Need After Intense Flooding

    Torrential rains in Malawi have caused dozens of deaths, with hundreds of people still missing. Photo: UNDP/Arjan van de Merwe More>>

    Lack Of Funding Hampering Aid To Syria

    Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator Kyung-wha Kang briefs the Security Council on the situation in Syria. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe More>>

    Spy Agency CSE Is Monitoring Our Private Online Activities

    Breaking - Spy agency CSE is monitoring our private online activities on a massive scale and sharing sensitive data with other governments More>>

    UN ‘blue Helmet’ Killed Near Lebanon-Israel Cross-Fire

    28 January 2015 – A United Nations peacekeeper with the UN Interim Force in Lebanon ( UNIFIL ) was killed today near the border with Israel but the precise cause of death is as yet undetermined and remains the subject of investigation, according ... More>>

    ALSO:


    Get More From Scoop

     
     
     
     
     
    World
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news