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

 

Journalism under fire amid rise of ‘fake news’

Journalism under fire amid rise of ‘fake news’ and social media-driven echo chambers – UNESCO report

6 November 2017 – The media industry, which remains the primary source of news and information in the digital age, faces both vast opportunities and steep challenges, the United Nations cultural agency said on Monday in its flagship analysis of new trends in media freedom, pluralism, independence and the safety of journalists.

“Covering the period 2012 to 2017, this study not only maps emerging global trends – it makes an unequivocal call to action to counter new and persistent challenges,” stated Irina Bokova, Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in the foreword of the report, titled the World Trends in Freedom of Expression and Media Development.

“This provides a unique reference point for Member States, intergovernmental organizations, civil society groups, academia, journalists and media professionals, and all those who wish to understand the fundamentals of press freedom in a changing world,” she added.

The report highlights such positive developments as civil society mobilizing to push for greater access to information, media houses cooperating with fact-checking services to push back against a torrent of disinformation, and more and more Governments adopting freedom of information laws.

In the digital age, the report says, women journalists are able to develop an online presence liberated from newsroom hierarchies, and citizen journalists and activists have access to modes of mass communication that were previously unthinkable.

The report, however, warned that “across the world, journalism is under fire,” citing the rise of ‘fake news’ stories that shroud the truth and muddy information, as well as social media algorithms that are contributing to the creation of virtual ‘echo chambers’ and exacerbating political polarization. Governments have shut down the internet, notably before elections. Journalists are under wide-ranging attack, facing rising violence.

“The stakes are even higher for citizens across the world, women and men, who rely on professional journalism to navigate the development and transformation of their societies,” Ms. Bokova said.

The key findings were presented by Guy Berger, Director of UNESCO’s Division of Freedom of Expression and Media Development at an event, held alongside the Communication and Information Commission of UNESCO’s General Conference in Paris.

Trends in media freedom

Trends in media pluralism

Trends in media independence

Trends in the safety of journalists


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


UN: Bachelet Alarmed By Number Of Palestinian Children Killed In Latest Escalation

UN Human Rights Chief Michelle Bachelet today expressed alarm at the high number of Palestinians, including children, killed and injured in the occupied Palestinian territory this year, including in intense hostilities between Israel and Palestinian armed groups in Gaza last weekend... More>>

Save The Children: One Year Under Taliban Rule, Girls Are More Isolated, Hungry, Sad: New Report
One year since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan, an economic crisis, crippling drought and new restrictions have shattered girls’ lives, excluding them from society and leaving them hungry...
More>>

Palestinian Ministry of Health: Developments In The Health Situation During The Israeli Aggression On The Cities & Governorates Of The Gaza Strip
For the second day in a row, the Israeli aggression against the Gaza Strip continues by targeting overcrowded residential areas and neighborhoods, as the death toll rose to 13 citizens, including a 5-year-old girl and a 23-year-old woman... More>>


Somalia: ‘We Cannot Wait For Famine To Be Declared; We Must Act Now’
Rising acute food insecurity in Somalia has caused more than 900,000 people to flee their homes in search of humanitarian assistance since January last year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned... More>>

UN: American West Faces Water And Power Shortages Due To Climate Crisis
Two of the largest reservoirs in the United States are at dangerously low levels due to the climate crisis and overconsumption of water, which could affect water and electricity supply for millions in six western states and Mexico, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) warned on Tuesday... More>>



Singapore: UN Experts Call For Immediate Moratorium On Executions For Drug Offences

UN experts* today condemned the execution of Nazeri Bin Lajim, a 64-year-old Malay Singaporean national convicted of drug offenses and urged the Government of Singapore to halt plans to execute individuals on death row for drug related charges... More>>