Professor Jackie Harrison, CFOM Chair, writes about the long history of media manipulation and fake news, and the staying power of quality journalism. This piece for The Conversation, published on the World Press Freedom Day 2018, marks also the UNESCO announcement for Jackie Harrison, who has been awarded a prestigious new UNESCO Chair in Media Freedom, Journalism Safety and the Issue of Impunity.
In 2017 the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation handed down an exceptionally important decision. It struck down a series of previous convictions handed down against Elena Nadtoka, the editor of a local newspaper in the Rostov Region, and instructed the local courts concerned to reverse their verdicts. The move followed a final ruling from the European Court of Human Rights on what was seen as a crucial test case in the struggle for survival of free media in Russia.
Emma Heywood, a Lecturer and Researcher at the University of Sheffield’s Department of Journalism Studies, wrote this article which has been published on The Conversation based on her first-hand experience of life in the West Bank, where her research is focused on the role of local radio in NGO activities in war-affected zones.
There are clear signs that hate speech is on the increase, often turbo charged by social media. The London Bridge attacks in July triggered a big spike in hate crimes with a significant amount of them being attacks in the street directed at British Muslims, the Guardian reported. Figures released by the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, showed a fivefold increase in Islamophobic attacks since the atrocity at London Bridge, and a 40% increase in racist incidents, compared with the daily average this year.
In 1993 the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY’) was established to deal with the war crimes committed during the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s. In over two decades, the ICTY has convicted and sentenced 83 individuals. This is an unprecedented feat for an international court which also prides itself for having paved the way for reconciliation. Despite the positive institutional view of the tribunal’s impact in terms of promoting reconciliation, the tribunal has been beset by negative perceptions by local peoples across the States of the former Yugoslavia. Numerous factors have led to these negative perceptions, but it would be impossible to understand public perceptions of the ICTY without taking account of the role played by the media.