Media freedom remains fragile in South Africa

Franz Krüger, University of the Witwatersrand Four decades after the Black Wednesday crackdown on the media and the black consciousness movement, South Africa is a different country. Freedom of expression is guaranteed in the constitution and a slew of institutions and laws support the guarantee. At the same time, powerful groups continue to seek ways …

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Initiative to build African science journalism capacity

By Sam Otieno [GRAHAMSTOWN, SOUTH AFRICA] A two-year programme has been launched to build capacity of science journalists and improve science coverage in Africa. It was launched this month (1 September) with the aim of recognising the important role of science journalism in promoting Africa’s socioeconomic development. The project is being funded by the African …

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Africa has a long history of fake news

George Ogola, University of Central Lancashire US President Donald Trump’s election and his disdain for the mainstream media has been seen by some as the triumph of post-truth politics. Post-truth politics is a culture in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief. Not only is …

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Press freedom has come a long way in Africa, but precariously

Tawana Kupe, University of the Witwatersrand Reporters Without Borders’ latest World Press Freedom Index shows two interesting things. Namibia, ranked number 17, has the most improved press freedom environment in the world. And Africa, with the exception of North Africa, came second in rankings on the most improved media environment since 2015. Namibia’s rise in …

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Exclusive: Interview with Committee to Protect Journalists’ Sue Valentine

In a news release dated January 6, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) judged 2015 to be the “fourth most deadly year on record for journalists.” It said that 71 journalists were killed in the line of duty, with 42 percent of them (30 individuals) murdered by the so-called Islamic State. According to the news …

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