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News & Events
Diversity in Publishing: There’s No Going Back PDF Print

Published: 21 June 2018

Country: UK

By Yasmine Alibhai Brown, first published by i News on 11 June 2018*

Penguin_Random_House_InclusionFirst, I should, I guess, apologise to the author, Lionel Shriver, best known for the explosive novel We Need to Talk About Kevin. On Monday, live on the Wright Stuff (Channel5), I rudely said she should ‘shut up’.

On second thoughts, maybe not an apology, but an extended reproach is what she deserves for writing up a storm in the The Spectator - these days a repository of regressive ideas and hard right theologies. The publishers Penguin Random House have decided that by 2025, their staff and authors would “reflect the UK population taking into account ethnicity, gender, sexuality, social mobility and disability”.

 
Media Coverage of the Windrush Generation PDF Print

Published: 15 June 2018

Country: UK

By Angelo Boccato

Windrush_2The British Parliament Home affairs select committee called for a hardship fund to be set up by the government in order to help victims of the Windrush scandal who have fallen into financial difficulties.

“Members of the Windrush generation, who arrived in the UK from 1948, as well as their children, have been wrongly targeted and in some cases left destitute by Theresa May’s “hostile environment” policies, which require employers, NHS staff, private landlords and other bodies to demand evidence of people’s citizenship or immigration status”, reports the Guardian. The Guardian’s coverage has led to a public apology from Prime Minister Theresa May and the resignation of former Home Secretary Amber Rudd – a direct result of pressure from the paper over the Windrush scandal.

 
What the Babchenko “Murder” Case Says About Journalism PDF Print

Published: 15 June 2018

Country: Ukraine

DfVIKTNX0AMnXjzOn May 29th the case of Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko made the headlines. At first, most of the media reported that he was shot and killed in Kiev. Less than 24 hours later, the same prominent media reported that they were wrong -  Babchenko appeared alive and well on a press conference talking about the ‘murder’ that was staged in order to uncover Russia’s plan to assassinate him.  The German broadcaster DW interviewed some of the Babchenko’s colleagues in Moscow and Kyiv who criticized him for faking his death saying that the stunt has undermined trust in independent journalism. Many agree that Babchenko’s ‘fake murder’ and the way media reported on it can be added to the list of excuses to mistrust media.

Some of the most prominent media outlets including BBC, the Guardian, the Independent, CNN, Reuters and many more covered the news pre and post the revelation of the murder setup. According to CNN, “no fake news ever shocked reporters working in Russia and Ukraine more than this story.”

 
Lack of Diversity in the UK Radio Industry PDF Print

Published: 15 June 2018

Country: UK

8371951320_c555b7c519_oEthnic minorities are significantly underrepresented in the UK radio industry, making up only 6% of staff. This and many other findings were published by Ofcom, the UK’s communication regulator, in a report looking at diversity and equal opportunities in the UK radio industry. The report highlights several problems with the industry, whilst also offering an action plan for the future. Overall, the report displays the importance of diversity within the industry. Sharon White, Ofcom Chief Executive, states in the report: “Listeners expect to hear programmes that authentically portray life across the UK, its nations and regions. But that is hard to achieve if people working in radio do not reflect the breadth of modern society.”

There are  two main problems unearthed by the report: there is a lack of diversity overall in the radio industry, and there is also a lack of data on the topic. Data is essential, as it allows for a clear picture of where the industry can improve in terms of diversity. White highlights this importance: “Only transparency and accountability will help extend opportunities in radio to everyone.”

 
Anti-Western Propaganda in Georgia PDF Print

Published: 12 June 2018

Country: Georgia

Anti_West-Cover-ENGIn Georgia, the media is very often used as a propaganda tool. Due to tense relations between Russia and the USA, and the rest of the Western world, media is often used as a tool to serve the motives of either of the parties. Georgian media has a pro-Kremlin agenda due to political inclinations and therefore is used to disseminate misinformation regarding the Western world through its messages, sometimes subtly and sometimes in a more direct manner.

This was the conclusion drawn in a recent study conducted by the Media Development Foundation (MDF), in which they analysed the anti-Western messages and fake news spread in the Georgian media. The research aims to look at different media outlets, including mainstream and print media to monitor the pattern of dissemination of fake news and anti-Western perspective throughout different Georgian media platforms.

The study, titled "Anti-Western Propaganda", looks at various statements made in Georgian broadcast and print media that establish the West, particularly the USA, as an enemy state. For example, Valeri Kvaratskhelia, a presenter for TV Obieqtivi said during one of the shows: “The USA has recently created a terrorist state, the so-called Islamic State, and used it for strengthening its hegemony in the Middle East. It was primarily Russia that went against it because Russia believed that the existence of a terrorist state was unacceptable.”

 
Why the Media Were Right to Republish Barr’s Racism PDF Print

Published: 5 June 2018

Country: USA

Screen_Shot_2018-06-11_at_07.21.28American TV network ABC cancelled the Roseanne Barr’s show after the American comedian made racist comments on Twitter about the former advisor to President Obama, Valarie Jarrett, who is black and is born in Iran to American parents. Barr, who is a long-time Trump supporter, was a star of the  long running sitcom “Roseanne” which apparently was the most popular US show of 2018. Many media outlets reporting a story on ABC cancelling Barr’s show, repeated and quoted exactly the same racist tweet. The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) asked experts if those media should have avoided repeating Roseanne Barr’s racism.

ABC  explained their decision to the show citing that Barr’s statements are not reflective of the channel’s policies and belief and inconsistent with their  values."

 
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