MDI News


The Role of the Media in the Rise of Austrian Far-Right PDF Print

Published: 11 January 2018

Country: Austria

Austria_Elections_2017Asel is the first baby to be born in 2018 in the Austrian capital Vienna. Instead of good wishes, Asel and her Muslim parents were subjects to hundreds of Islamophobic comments online. Hate speech appearing in comment sections of some media and in social media posts was so extreme that the Austrian president had to intervene reminding those who left racist messages that “all men are born free and equal in dignity and rights”.

The New Year’s Day outpour of hatred was a reminder that Austria has turned right becoming, as the Guardian described it, “the only western European country with a far-right presence in government.” Many would claim that the Austrian media, mostly tabloids, played an important role in the country’s move to the right. Also, Austrian populists and their supporters take to social media in order to communicate ideology online. For instance, Heinz-Christian Strache, the leader of far-right party FPÖ, is followed by almost 750,000 people on Facebook equivalent to 15% of Austrians who voted in the last elections.

 
MDI Trainees' Stories Published in the European Media PDF Print

Published: 11 January 2018

Region: Europe

MAH_Articles_Photos_1Journalists who participated in a workshop titled “Reporting on Migration & Refugees” organised by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) in September 2017, as part of the Media Against Hate Speech project, have had the stories they produced during the workshop on migrants, refugees and asylum seekers published in some of the most prominent European media such as Deutsche Welle, TPortal in Croatia and the public radio in Portugal.

While attending the workshop in London, a journalist from Berlin, Johanna investigated the growing tendency in the UK to place refugee children into foster families. Women who gathered under a slogan “Support not Separation” after their children were taken and put into foster care, talked to Johanna explaining why they demand help from the British authorities. Another participant Loveday told a story of a woman who used to be a leading dentistry expert in Damascus, now trying to get a job in Germany.

 
There Has Never Been A More Crucial Time To Study Diversity In the Media PDF Print

Date: Ongoing

Country: UK, London

By: Eline Jeanné

Screen_Shot_2019-05-01_at_2.39.44_PM

“I’d definitely encourage people to go for it; it has widened my perspective towards things. It’s so interesting and I learned so much, I left the course feeling very enlightened and a lot more knowledgeable.” These are the words of Sophie Muscat, a current student on the MA Diversity and the Media course at the University of Westminster in London.

The course, which was designed and developed in collaboration with the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), aims to teach students the practical skills to engage in responsible media coverage of diversity issues. Applications are now open for the upcoming course, which is starting in September 2019. Information about studying, entry requirements, fees and funding can be obtained during the next open day in Harrow Campus on 5 June, or on the course-specific website.

Read MoreThe course is suitable for anyone interested in enhancing their understanding of social diversity and their skills in the area of inclusive journalism, whether one has extensive experience in the journalism field or none at all. It combines both theoretical and practical knowledge, providing students with a well-rounded understanding on the topic of media and diversity, at a critical point in history.

 

Sophie found discussions about important social issues, and how they’re covered in the media to be particularly relevant. After starting the course with little practical media knowledge, she quickly found herself producing a documentary:  “That was a huge learning curve, making a whole documentary from scratch. I’ve never studied media, so I learned so much. I learned how to interview people, edit film, set up cameras, we were learning everything by doing—you see the finished product and it’s so rewarding.”

This hands-on approach is what makes the Diversity and Media MA such a rewarding—not to mention, practical—course, as students are equipped not only with essential theoretical knowledge, but with the tools needed to be successful in the media industry.

In addition to meeting people from around the world, students have the chance to undertake internships at a variety of organisations within the UK and overseas with which the MA has established partnerships.  This includes MDI as well as TAG International Development and The Prisma/The Multicultural Newspaper, all organisations who actively work in the realm of diversity and the media. These opportunities show students the value of their degree and the many career paths on offer in this field.

Sophie hopes to use her knowledge on inclusive reporting at a quality media organisation: “Ideally, I want to work as a media worker in an independent company like VICE, AJ Plus or Playground; researching topics and providing information for short documentaries or magazines. I want to report and investigate.”

Ready to apply? Check out the website here.

 
Is the Media Response to Sexual Assaults Colour-Blind? PDF Print

Published: 22 December 2017

Country: United States

by Angelo Boccato

Burke_Me_TooThe “Me Too” movement has led to a change in the media approach towards sexual harassment allegations against men in position of power, but it has also exposed the lack, or a different standard of representation of black women who have denounced sexual harassment.

While the #MeToo hashtag was launched on Twitter in October 2017 by actress Alyssa Milano in the wake of sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein, the actual movement was founded back in 2006 by a black activist Tarana Burke. Although Burke was included in the story Person of the Year: “The Silence Breakers” by the TIME, she was omitted from the magazine’s cover.

 
‘New Normal’ on Reporting Migration in Italian Media PDF Print

 

Published: 12 December 2017

Country: Italy

By Angelo Boccato

Screen_Shot_2017-12-13_at_08.31.41In the current human rights crisis, migrants and refugees are not only victims of wars, wrong policies, smugglers’ greed, but often they are attacked, accused and discriminated by some media, mostly tabloids and right-wing publications.  On the occasion of the Human Rights Day, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) has looked closely on the situation in Italy where, as Father Abba Mussie Zerai pointed out, it is possible to find different samples of the ‘new normal’ racist rhetoric.

Right-wing daily newspapers such as Il Giornale and Libero frequently publish inflammatory stories on migrants and refugees using expressions such as influx, invasion etc. Some of them label migrants as mad based on a research examining what kind of impact long journeys and violence can have on psyche and body of refugees and asylum seekers.

 
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