European elections 2019: EFJ Manifesto calls to endorse 8 principles for free media

On 26 May, European citizens will elect their Members of the European Parliament (MEP) to represent them at the new European Parliament. During the campaign, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is launching its Manifesto calling on all candidate MEPs to commit for the revival of a free and pluralistic media in Europe, so urgent in times of disinformation and losing trust in EU institutions. The 2019 EP elections come at a turning point for the European Union which urgently needs to reconnect with its citizens and represent their interests. We wish a forward-looking EU where not only the economy…

Serbia : Public TV building stormed by anti-government protesters

A group of around 100 anti-government protesters stormed the building of the Serbian national broadcaster RTS in Belgrade on Saturday 16 March, demanding to be allowed to make a public address live on air. The European and International Federations of Journalists (EFJ and IFJ) join their Serbian affiliates, Journalists’ Association of Serbia (UNS) and the Independent Journalists’ Association of Serbia (NUNS), in condemning this incident and demanding all parties to respect RTS’s editorial independence. Protesters, who wanted to voice their opposition to Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, had to be evacuated from the RTS building after about 50 riot police were…

Trade Secrets: Changes in favour of journalists’ sources and whistleblowers in Germany

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) together with its affiliate in Germany, German Union of Journalists (dju) in ver.di welcomes the fact that the Legal Committee of the German Parliament has approved substantial amendments to the draft law, which is intended to transpose the EU Directive on the Protection of Trade Secrets into national law. “Reason has prevailed in the parliamentary process and given freedom of the press the status that the EU actually intended. This is a success that above all protects the work of investigative colleagues,” said Tina Groll, Federal Chairwoman of the dju in ver.di. The decision…

Trade unions support Action for Climate

Seven European trade unions, including the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), are supporting the global day of protest being staged by young people against climate change on Friday: ETUC, EFJ, EFBWW, EPSU, EFFAT, ETF and IndustriAll (representing workers in energy intensive industries). Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old Swedish school student who started the ‘Friday’s for Future’ movement, has called for her peers around the world to join her to demonstrate outside national parliaments or local government buildings. Some 727 protests are scheduled across Europe, including another major demonstration in Brussels which will begin outside International Trade Union House. A banner reading ‘No…

Whistleblowing directive: EFJ regrets that protection for public disclosure is subject to restrictive conditions

On Monday 11 March, the European Parliament, the Commission and the Council of the European Union reached a political agreement on the protection of whistleblowers against reprisals. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) welcomes the significant improvements compared to the directive proposal, but regrets the intent of limiting protection for those reporting to the public, in particular through the media. From the very beginning the issue of the reporting channels has been the main point of discord during the negotiations. What procedure whistleblowers should follow to be granted protection? The European institutions came to a decision on Monday evening. Whistleblowers…

EFJ and IFJ urge the adoption of Copyright Directive and any possible improvements

The European and International Federations of Journalists (EFJ-IFJ) call on the European Parliament to adopt a copyright directive that benefits all journalists. Since it was first introduced, both journalists’ federations have worked jointly and tirelessly, supporting the proposal and working to improve it. The federations continue to seek improvements and clarifications in the lead up to the crunch vote on its adoption this month. The proposed directive, the federations say, includes important provisions for the creative and media industries and for authors. It offers the publishing industry and journalists a share of the revenue their work generates online (Article 11),…

Turkey needs to respect foreign media outlets’ independence

UPDATE (14/03/2019) : The ZDF announced that Jörg Brase is after all allowed to continue his work in Turkey and that they corrected their decision/that he will get a work permit. Two German journalists were compelled to leave Turkey on Sunday, 10 March 2019, after their press accreditations were not renewed for 2019 without any explanation. Jörg Brase, a journalist working for Germany’s ZDF public broadcaster, and Thomas Seibert, reporter at the Tagespiegel newspaper, were long-term correspondents in the country. The Turkish embassy in Germany apparently tried in vain to make a deal to have the correspondents replaced, Tagespiegel’s editor-in-chief reports.…

Public service media in focus in Bucharest

Around 40 journalists and journalists’ representatives from 24 European countries attended the workshop on “Modernising public service media (PSM) through innovation and dialogue” on 4 and 5 March in Bucharest. Co-organised by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the Romanian trade union FAIR – Media Sind, and with support of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) the workshop addressed the challenge for public service media to adapt to the changing way of consuming and creating news and media. Workshop on 'Modernising public service media through innovation and dialogue' just started! Thank you Fair @MediaSind and @ro2019eu for the opening remarks…

Equality for female staff in the media: we call on media leaders to take action!

Today, on International Women’s Day 2019, media and journalists’ organisations call upon all media leaders around the globe to stand up and protect the rights of female journalists, both staff and freelance. Today, on International Women’s Day 2019, we want to call upon all media leaders around the globe to stand up and protect the rights of female journalists, both staff and freelance. The facts shown by recent research are alarming. Female journalists are systematically paid less in the media industry – in the UK alone female journalists earn 17.4% less than their male colleagues. Almost a third of female…

UN and OSCE media freedom watchdogs raised concerns over the EU whistleblowing directive

In a letter sent on 5 March to the European institutions, the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and the protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, David Kaye, and the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Harlem Désir, raised concerns about three aspects of the draft directive on the protection of whistleblowers. This letter is published as the negotiations between the European Parliament, the Council of the EU and the European Commission are in the final stretch. The last trilogue meeting will be on Monday 11 March. The tiered reporting system This is the main…

Croatian journalists stage protest against abusive lawsuits

Several hundred journalists rallied in Zagreb on Saturday to protest against a wave of lawsuits targeting the media. According to the Croatian Journalists’ Association (HND), an EFJ affiliate, which organized the march, politicians, public figures and corporations had filed over 1,100 lawsuits against journalists and news outlets. HND says these court cases are part of an attempt to censor the media and put pressure on journalists. The protest was called after Croatian public broadcaster HRT itself filed 36 lawsuits against its own journalists and others, including HND head Hrvoje Zovko and HND branch in Public Service Media, who complained of…

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