European Federation of Journalists

Governments must ensure the public’s right to know in the COVID-19 pandemic

Following its recent webinar with European Press Councils, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) expressed concern about the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic on freedom of information. The EFJ today joined ARTICLE 19 in calling on governments to ensure the public’s right to know in the COVID-19 pandemic. The EFJ and representatives of 17 press and media councils exchanged ideas and discussed in a webinar the impact of the pandemic on journalism. The EFJ expressed concern about access to information for journalists, as well as potential threats or restrictions to freedom of the press due to the crisis. In…

COVID-19: political interference in the media in Kosovo

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) calls on media in Kosovo to refrain from intensifying tensions in a health crisis. The quarantine of the city of North Mitrovica has resulted in inappropriate and unethical media coverage. The EFJ strongly denounces these discrepancies which show strong political interference in some media in Kosovo. Unsupported statements and provocative questions asked by a journalist from the Radio Television of Kosovo (RTK) while reporting live from North Mitrovica on Saturday evening’s news raised a wave of reactions in Kosovo. The remarks risk contributing in raising tensions between Serb and Albanian communities. On Friday, the…

ARTICLE19 briefing: How to tackle misinformation about COVID-19

Professional journalism, ethical journalism, independent media, transparency from those in power, media literacy and the free flow of information are the best antidote to misinformation and conspiracy theories about the spread of COVID-19 across the globe. In that particular context, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) welcomed the policy brief recently issued by ARTICLE19. “More than ever we need professional journalists in the field. Citizens are counting on them to report on the real impact of the pandemic, to disseminate protective measures and to hold decision-makers accountable. The EFJ asks media owners to refrain from any initiative to reduce wages,…

IFJ launches new Global Charter of Ethics for Journalists

Journalists’ unions around the world endorsed on 12 June, in Tunis, a new Charter of Ethics for Journalists following months of consultations. The document builds on and reinforces the ethical standards laid down by the 1954 IFJ Declaration of Principles on the Conduct of Journalists, the most widely recognised text on journalistic ethics to date. That Declaration was drafted in Bordeaux, France, 65 years ago, and was last updated in 1986, hence the need for a new Charter adapted to current challenges facing the media. Drafted by a working group of 16 people, including representatives of the IFJ leadership, regions and…

EU Fundamental Rights Agency launches new e-learning platform on migration for journalists

Help is at hand for media professionals seeking to enhance the quality of their work when reporting about migration, as the Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) releases a new e-learning platform developed by journalists for journalists to mark World Refugee Day on 20 June. The online e-Media Toolkit provides first-hand assistance to media professionals with learning resources, training courses, and opportunities to share and interact. The learning section allows users to take courses in which journalists or editors of leading media outlets share their real-life newsroom dilemmas of reporting on migration. Training provides material for media trainers to design their own…

Western Balkans: How to fight self-censorship in public service media newsrooms

On 18 and 19 October in Belgrade, programme directors and editors’ in chief discussed with members of  the EFJ Broadcasting Expert Group how to best implement code of conducts and editorial guidelines for Public Service Media in Western Balkans. The workshop was implemented by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and is part of a two-year project “Technical Assistance to Public Service Media in the Western Balkan” led by the IFJ in cooperation with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). The EFJ trainer Muriel Hanot, Director of the Belgian Press Council, gave a presentation about ethical standards in Belgium including the use…

“Words That Matter” – glossary by Cypriot journalists to address local issues

On 10th of July in Nicosia, the Office of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media (RFOM) in cooperation with the Ethical Journalism Network (EJN), and several local journalists, including members of EFJ affiliates Basin-Sen and Union of Cyprus Journalists,  has published “Words That Matter“, a trilingual glossary in English, Greek, and Turkish, to list phrases and words, used by the journalists in communities, which may be taken sensitively. The glossary resulted from a common effort between the organisations to minimise hate speech in journalism, as well as trying to overcome the long-lasting tensions between Greek Cypriot and Turkish…

Robot Journalism – We should not be afraid

Robot journalism or automation is becoming an important part of news production. It speed up news production and generate a vast amount of content in a matter of sector to be distributed and consumed in print and online. However, we know little about how news automation work and its implication on ethics and quality of journalism, as well as the impact on human journalists. These questions were explored in a workshop organised by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) within the framework of the Media Road project on 5 June in Lisbon, Portugal. The workshop was attended by around 40…

Italian public TV: new agreement including commitment to tackle hate speech

The Italian public television RAI, Rai Journalists Trade Union (Usigrai) and the Italian EFJ affiliate, FNSI (Federazione Nazionale della Stampa Italiana), signed a new collective agreement to extend the national labour contract to journalists working in public media. For the first time, the agreement includes an ethical commitment to combat hate speech, discrimination and racism, as well as a commitment to promote gender equality and the rights of minors. This 2018-2022 agreement, signed on the 13th of March, aims to reverse the trend among media organisations to use right-grabbing contracts and provide unfair remuneration to journalists. It will include: a reduction…

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