UK: journalist Owen Jones attacked by four men

Guardian journalist Owen Jones has been physically assaulted in London while celebrating his 35th birthday with friends in the early hours of Saturday morning. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) condemned the outrageous attack on Owen Jones and called on the British authorities to investigate the case and bring the perpetrators to justice. After leaving a bar near King’s Cross in London on the night of Saturday 17 August, at about 3am, a group of men approached Owen Jones and his friends and began hitting him in the head from behind. According to reports, Jones fell to the ground after…

Azerbaijan: Supreme Court denies Khadija Ismayilova’s request for early end of her probation

On August 7, the Azerbaijani Supreme Court decided to uphold its charges against investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova, who was accused of tax evasion. After she has been living under a probation sentence for three and a half years, the former correspondent of RadioFreeEurope / Radio Liberty seeked for an early termination of her probation. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) condemns the court’s decision and demands Azerbaijani authorities to stop her repressions. Since 2010, Ismayilova had been writing on cases of corruption linked to the Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev’s family, until she was imprisoned in 2014 after a government-driven smear…

Russia: communications regulator demands censorship on information about Moscow demonstrations

On 11 August, the Russian national communications regulator Roskomnadzor published a statement demanding Google to prevent its video-sharing service Youtube from distributing information on the recent protests in Moscow. The agency said, it wants to prevent “advertising for unauthorized demonstrations”. Otherwise, countermeasures could be taken. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) condemns this attempt of censorship and demands Russian authorities to respect the citizen’s right for information. “According to available information, several entities possessing YouTube channels have bought advertising instruments [such as push notifications] with the aim of distributing information about unsanctioned [illegal] mass events, including those aimed at disrupting…

Germany: lawyer’s attempts to influence reporting are increasing

German media’s legal departments see an increase of lawyer’s attempts to prevent journalists from reporting. That was found out by the new study “If you write that, I will sue you! Preventive strategies of lawyers against media”, published on 08 August. The research filed by the German Otto Brenner Foundation in cooperation with the “Gesellschaft für Freiheitsrechte” determined that legal departments receive an average of three preventive warnings per month. The strategy: “press law information letters” Knowing that they don’t have a legal right to prevent a media from publishing an article concerning their clients, lawyers have the common practice…

Freelancers in Belgium: wages remain precariously low

Freelance fees in the french-speaking Belgium haven’t developed for more than ten years. That reveals the latest inquiry “Les tarifs de la pige”, published on 05 August by our Belgian affiliate Association Générale des Journalistes Professionnels (AJP). The fourth edition of the study shows, some tariffs of freelance-journalists have remained on the same precarious level since it was first raised in 2007 – and some even dropped below. But it doesn’t have to be like that, says Sophie Lejoly, Deputy Secretary General of the AJP. Whether it’s newspapers, magazines, web editions, TV or radio, public or private media – the…

Turkish court imposes access block on news portals

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) calls on Turkish authorities to cancel the outrageous decision of Ankara 3rd Peace Judge to block access to 136 websites and social media accounts. Ankara 3rd Peace Judge Hasan Demirtas decided on 16 July to block access to 136 internet resources, including bianet and Gazete Fersude news portals, on the basis of “national security” (article 8/A of İnternet Law). The ban targets 15 websites and dozens of social media accounts (on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest). The court’s unjustified ruling prevents access to at least 200,000 news stories in bianet, which has been broadcasting…

Russia: twelve journalists detained in Moscow demonstrations

On 03 August, Moscow’s police has detained at least ten journalists covering a rally organized by opposition groups. Continuing the protest of 27 July, about 1500 people had gathered in the capital of Russia in order to demonstrate for fair elections to the city council. The European Federation of Jounalists (EFJ) and its affiliate, the Russian Federation of Journalists (RUJ), strongly condemn this violation of press freedom and demands the Russian authorities to respect the journalist’s right to report. According to Moscow police, about 600 people were arrested during the riots. Among these, there were at least twelve journalists and…

Ukraine: radical nationalists stormed press conference at Ukrinform

On 30 July, about a dozen men dressed in T-shirts with the inscription “Tradition and Order” violently entered the press center of the Ukrinform news agency in Kiev, Ukraine, during a press conference of parliamentary candidates. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joins its member National Union of Journalists of Ukrain (NUJU) in condemning the incident. After entering the building, the group broke the door to the press-hall and damaged the equipment and furniture. The group started to push and beat Ukrinform staff members. they also threw eggs and poured water on an independent candidate from the town of Pokrovsk…

Bosnia and Herzegovina: every fifth citizen thinks attacks on journalists are justified

21% of the Bosnian citizens share the opinion that attacks on journalists are justified, says a new report made for the needs of the Bosnia-Herzegovina Journalists’ Association (BH Journalists) and the Friedrich Erbert Foundation, published on 16 July. The study titled “Researching Media Freedoms in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2019” reveals worrying trends in the attitude of the country’s citizens towards their media. In the last six years, BH Journalists has documented 121 cases of violence, 44 physical attacks, 21 death threats and 48 serious cases of harassment or verbal pressure. Yet violence against media workers is increasingly accepted in Bosnia…

Newsroom diversity demands real actions instead of lip services

Media leaders should stop seeing diversity as a “nice to have” and treat it as a a “must have” instead. That was determined by the latest study titled “Are Journalists Today’s Coal Miners? The Struggle for Talent and Diversity in Modern Newsrooms”, published on 15 July by the Reuters Institute in cooperation with the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz. The research investigated 28 news organisations and journalism schools in Germany, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. “Journalists must reach out to audiences that are becoming more and more diverse while newsrooms must be made attractive to a young and diverse talent…

Poland: newspaper plans to circulate homophobic stickers

Update: On 25 July, the District Court in Warsaw ordered to stop the distribution of the sticker ‘LGBT Free Zone’ attached to ‘Gazeta Polska’. The editor-in-chief of the newspaper, Tomasz Sakiewicz, called the court’s decision “fake news” and announced to refuse the withdrawal. Instead he warned shop owners via Twitter that anyone who “will hide the paper or the sticker, we will sue them.” The Polish weekly Gazeta Polska announced on 17 July plans to distribute “LGBT-free zone” stickers to its readers in its next issue. The International and European Federations of Journalists (IFJ/EFJ) strictly denounce an ‘irresponsible attitude” that…

Load more