Turkey jails more journalists than any other country

Turkey jails more journalists than China, Russia and Egypt combined. Yet Erdogan speaks about the need to uphold the truth. This doesn't add up. What does Erdogan want? For many Turks, Erdogan is authoritarian and a dictator who is trying to change Turkish society from a secular state to increasingly Islamic. What will happen? This is what The Wash...
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Why self publishing works

I confess, I’ve thought about self-publishing, like many people no doubt. I’ve heard good and bad things. The latter is mostly to do with the time that the author must take to edit the manuscript and get it just right for the reader. I think that’s not a bad thing.

I don’t understand all the pros and cons of self publishing. I haven’t had to- yet- but I am learning. And the article below, from Salon magazine, (www.salon.com/2013/04/04/hugh_howey_self_publishing_is_the_future_and_great_for_writers/) explains the benefits and costs of self publishing well. It's by Hugh Howey, an American science fiction writer.

 Hugh Howey: Self-publishing is the future — and great for writers

Books have changed forever, and that’s good. Writers will find readers and make more money going it alone, like me

Contrary to recent reports, I am not the story of self-publishing.

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Where the jobs are for graduates in journalism

I often wonder what graduates of journalism do. It’s not easy finding a job in any discipline but it is probably harder in journalism- because the landscape is changing all the time; too many people want to be investigative journalists (as if they exist any more), and the demand is for digital journalists or whizz-kids on social media.

 I was OK when I graduated from journalism school in the late 1980s. At least there were still traditional journalism jobs, in the UK anyway. And I specialised in finance and economics- since I had come from the Treasury.

 I was interested read this survey that was carried out in Spain. Unsurprisingly the demand is for digital journalists.

Where the jobs are for graduates in journalism"The new journalism specialties". The graphic shows that 56% of the Spanish journalists surveyed work in media that have community managers, and 30% employ data and traffic analysts. Click to enlarge the graphic.Where will the jobs be for graduates in journalism and communication? The results of a survey of journalists in Spain give some indication. The urgent demand is for people with digital media skills, but more on that in a minute. The Press Association of Madrid's (abbreviated to APM in Spanish) 2017 survey was sent to 13,500 professionals, and the overall response rate was a respectable 13%. A little more than a third were working in journalism while another third were working in other professions or were retired or semi-retired. The remaining 30 percent were working in communications, mainly advertising and public relations. (News articles about the survey are here, here, and here in Spanish. Disconnect in training The survey results show that the respondents to the survey are not the ones who are filling the new digital media jobs in their newsrooms. For example, 56% of the respondents said their publications had digital community managers--the people responsible for interacting with users in social networks and other channels--while only 13% of the respondents said they were working in those jobs. Versión en español This might suggest that media organizations are filling these positions with people who are coming from outside their own newsrooms. Another possible explanation is that the people being hired for these new digital media jobs are newcomers to the profession and thus not members of the professional organizations contacted for the survey. In any case, the same discrepancy shows up in several other digital specialties: 35% of the respondents' newsrooms have data visualization specialists, but only 3% of the respondents are working in those jobs. Similar discrepancies exist for data journalists (32% vs. 19%) and analysts of traffic and data (31% vs. 5%). This last one of traffic analyst is critical. It seems to indicate that newsrooms don't have people on board who know how to interpret the data about how the public is interacting with their content. Failure to understand the audience in today's highly competitive environment has fatal consequences. Still a popular major The APM's report, which runs to more than 100 pages, noted that there were 22,000 students enrolled in university programs of journalism and communication. In 2016, Spain's universities granted degrees in journalism to 3,400 students. Where will they find work? There were only 27,000 people working in radio, television, newspapers, and magazines, and many of these organizations have been ruthlessly cutting staff and salaries. That's the bad news. The good news is that traditional newsrooms are hiring more people with digital media skills, and the number of people working for digital-only media is growing. More than a third (36%) of the survey respondents were working in digital media or social media roles. For young people entering the communications professions, there are several career paths:in major media, they might replace laid-off veterans who either could not or would not assume new digital rolesthey can join up with digital media natives, which, unfortunately, have small newsrooms and lower salaries and benefitsthey can respond to a growing demand from small businesses for marketing and advertising specialists to create campaigns in digital media.Not all of this is great news, but the trends are working in favor of those who can fill the changing job descriptions.  For journalism professors and managers of media organizations, the message is the same or similar in every country. We have to ask ourselves if we are doing everything we can to prepare the next generation of communications professionals. We need a generation of professionals with the skills to provide the high-quality information and news necessary for a healthy democracy. In a time of rapid change and shrinking resources, we need to find ways to collaborate--the media, universities, and all the organizations and institutions that provide them with financial support--to guarantee a promising future for these communicators and the audiences they serve.

http://newsentrepreneurs.blogspot.co.nz/2018/02/where-jobs-are-for-graduates-in.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed:+NewsEntrepreneurs+(News+Entrepreneurs)

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How newsletters can hit open rates between 50% and 60%

I receive newsletters all the time. Some are simple promotions with links while a few are editorial. Not many though. With these, the articles are summarised and the links made to it. This article below discusses what makes for a good editorial newsletter and how to measure success.

                               Four Ways Newsletter Publishers Can Hit Open Rates Between 50 and 60 Percent

Email newsletters, which seemed all but dead at the height of the social media revolution, have made a roaring comeback.

Traditional publishers like the New York Times, online specialists like Quartz and even newsletter-only publishers like TheSkimm are winning over droves of readers and creating new revenue streams at the same time with their email strategies. And there are as many newsletters as there are topics to write about. At Revue, we help tens of thousands of people, from big companies to individual writers, publish editorial newsletters that readers look forward to seeing in their inboxes.

Publishers of editorial newsletters have a laser focus on the right audience

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Media ethics under the spotlight

This article talks about the findings of a survey carried out by the Centre for International Media Ethics (CIME), of which I am a member. It it is an enlightening read.Happy New Year!!!

We at CIME are pleased to share with you the results from the Media Ethics in the Post-Truth Era survey. The aim of the survey was to learn from our colleagues and associates about the state of media ethics in relation to the growing concerns and challenges that fake news presents in your respective countries. Overall, we hope that the results of the survey offer us all, as journalists and media practitioners, an opportunity to reflect on 2017, and think more collectively about the work that we do going forward into 2018.Survey Results   Before we begin, we would like to point out that while we got responses from across Africa, the Americas, Central and South Asia, Europe and Oceania, we did not get any responses from South-East Asia (ASEAN) or China. At CIME we aim to reach as many respondents as possible, but given people's commitments this is not always possible. Nevertheless, globally it was clear that there has been a staggering increase in sensationalist and fake news. In fact, 90% of you had witnessed this in your work, as seen in the first graph below. While we are aware that this is not new, nor unique to 2017 only, as seen by the continuous discussions and debates over Russia's efforts to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election, 'fake news' has a significant potential for manipulating and influencing public opinions.   Q2. Have you witnessed an increase in sensationalist and fake news in local/national media in the country you live/work in?  When asked about whether your government is protecting media ethics against these emerging trends in fake news and media manipulation, not one said excellent, and a total of 51% said between poor and very poor. Q8. How would you rank the country in which you live/work in regards to the government protecting media ethics?  To emphasis these numbers, many of you shared some of the 'fake news' stories in your home countries, which ranged from the death of Robert Mugabe, matters pertaining to Catalan's Independence Process, the North Korean missile program to Muslims seemingly killing Hindus in India. All of which can flare unnecessary and unwanted conflicts as well as matters of fear mongering and invoking hatred. Such stories often create an image or argument that favours a particular interests without taking into consideration the basic principles of ethical journalism and news reporting which is endangering this profession.   Some of you also mentioned how these stories which are shared via new sources of information such as Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms, "purport to be news [without] sourcing, research and diligence done by traditional media." While there are many social media platforms, which publish information unprofessionally, many traditional media outlets and national broadcasters also operate unethically. As was mentioned in one comment, in countries like Brazil, the dissemination of misinformation through traditional media sources "has been always sensationalist". Therefore, this is not a matter of "new" verses "traditional", but complete media ecosystem matter.   A follow up concern to this, was whether or not there has been an increase in media outlets and/or journalists following the agenda of political and corporate elites.   Q3. Have you witnessed an increase in the media outlets and/or journalists following the agenda of political and corporate elites in the country you live/work in?   Again, a large majority (82.9%) agreed that there has been an increase. While many media outlets and broadcasters can openly criticize their presidents and corporate elites (those who have a large stake in a particular country), many of you continue to have a strong state media presence, which supports the state's agenda.   What was more interesting, were comments made about how some governments who want to be seen as having a free and fair media are using alternative methods to indirectly propagate their messages and information through trolls. For example, it was raised in one of the comments that a number of private and/or online media outlets "who write under false names" are paid by politicians, ruling parties and corporate elites to write stories to champion their character and public reputation. This question also flared another issue, the relationship between political parties and corporate elites. Two great examples of this that were shared were the on-going controversy over the Gupta family and Jacob Zuma in South Africa which has been labelled as 'Guptagate' and the power held by Globo Media in Brazil. Noam Chomsky's observations about propaganda and corporate media are useful reminders about what Daniel C. Hallin and Paolo Mancini (2004) defined as 'political parallelism' in both these cases.   Q4. Have any efforts been made by media outlets in the country you currently live/work in to invest in quality information and to combat hatred, racism and intolerance? Nevertheless, 62.7% of you stated that efforts have been made by media outlets to invest in quality information to combat hatred, racism and intolerance; either through "firing particular journalists" who are not maintaining their professionalism, establishing "alternative quality news sources", "editorial-opinion pieces [that] demand responses from government and political leaders", state broadcasters working "in collaboration with organisations such as the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ)" and national newspapers "investing in fact checking teams whose role is to debunk fake news". Such examples should not go unnoticed and should be recognized for upholding media ethics and combating matters of unprofessionalism, unethical reporting and matters relating to political parallelism.   Following on from these responses, the three principles which you suggested require the most attention in your country were - The publics right to accurate and fair information (82.9%), The journalist's professional integrity (44.6%) and joint third The journalist's social responsibility and Respect for universal values and diversity of cultures (34%). Nevertheless, it was clear from the results that all areas require attention, which emphasises that more work needs to be done.   Q5. In your opinion, which three principles from the list below require the most attention in the country you currently live/work in? As for what were some of the main issues or current violations of ethical reporting that you as a journalist or media practitioner face in order to carry out your work; Fake news (58.3%), low pay (50%), Pressure to provide news that attracts the largest audience and Political or corporate spin (47.9%) were the top three. Clearly fake news threw the media into overdrive amidst continued financial challenges last year. Thus, who is responsibility for ensuring that fake or misleading information is not available to the public delivered a mixed response. However, the three answers that came up the most were, the Government, Journalists/Editors and Facebook. Nevertheless, some of you stated that it was everyone's responsibility.   "Everybody. Consumers need to learn to be more informed, social media platforms need to point out misleading claims, journalists need to be even more careful when covering news to be aware of pitfalls from those trying to make them look bad" This last quote tallies with question 9 which asked whether there are many media literacy resources available to help people identify fake news, and whether the general public fact-check news sources? And the answer was 87.5% no.   Q9. There are many media literacy resources available to help people identify fake news, but do you think the general public in the country you live/work in fact-check news sources?  Many of you suggested that "citizen engagement and media literacy [should] be carried out by civil society organizations" and/or "in schools" to educate young people and the general public more broadly. Other ideas included "awareness raising campaigns" as well as having "accountable regulatory bodies". And as fake news continues to expand, and professional journalism is threatened, the need for people to be able to question, analyse, evaluate and ethically create media messages will become a necessary basic need.   Lastly, and very importantly, we asked you, how many of you are affiliated with other media ethics organisations. Your responses revealed that 36.3% are affiliated with your National Union of Journalists as well as international bodies such as International Federation of Journalists (33.3%) and the International Center for Journalists (24.2%). The reason for asking this question, was based on the success of these networks in recent times to help protect media ethics and journalistic professionalism in the Post-Truth Era. For example, take the network of nearly 400 journalists who worked together to expose the financial practices of the global elite, which we all now know as the Paradise Papers. Speaking truth to power, confronting and challenging information amidst political and economic intimidation, fake news, and changing public opinions, makes the role of professional and ethical journalism all the more important. And while there maybe a long road ahead for us as journalists and media professionals to continue upholding media ethics and the role we play in society, it is evident from the Watergate and Guptagate' that we must continue to work both independently and collectively to build a strong and robust media ecosystem.   Therefore, we would like to again thank all of you who kindly participated in the survey. We cannot stress how important it is to learn from each other about the current status of media ethics in your respective countries. So please continue to carry out the good work that you do, and we from the CIME Team wish you a very happy and ethical 2018!!

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Journalism and business go hand in hand

My eye was quickly drawn to this headline: “Why we need to teach more business skills in the J-school classroom.” Journalism and business

in the same sentence and this was being endorsed.

I had studied a different discipline from everyone else in my year at post-graduate journalism school at the University of Canterbury in New

Zealand. I had completed a post graduate degree in economics, worked at Treasury for three years and then studied at journalism school

for one year. Although I had an Arts degree everyone else had studied all the Arts subjects- languages, anthropology for example-and

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Should ethics be taught with social media?

Should journalism be taught along with ethics? The argument put forth below is that the two disciplines must be taught together. With the rise of social media, both should probably be taught but until now they have not been. I know that when I was at post-grad journalism school in the 1980s, ethics was not taught. It was assumed that we would all act ethically and consequently we would make the right decision.

 In many cases, that philosophy has been the right one and journalists often made the ethically correct decision. The rise in fake news and social media appears to have changed that, especially among the younger generation of journalists.

 I know the subject of ethics is taught in many schools across the Middle East. But I haven’t met anyone who was taught ethics in the UK or New Zealand. Is that about to change?

 This article came from Mediashift and EducationShift respectively.

Remix: Teaching #EthicalReporting in 140 Characters

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An outrageous prosecution

Turkey is proving to be increasingly authoritarian. Another journalist, of dual Turkish and Finnish nationality, is convicted of terrorism charges. She is in New York.

Turkey has one of the worst records for detaining journalists. According to Reporters Without Borders (RSF), more than 100 journalists and media contributors are now in Turkish jails. “RSF has to date been able to establish a direct link between the arrest and the victim’s journalistic activities in 41 of these cases, and the organisation continues to verify others. President Erdogan’s increasing authoritarianism is being reflected in raids on media outlets that are designed to silence his critics,” the 2016 report states.

he report also shows that the number of detained professional journalists in Turkey has risen 22% after quadrupling in the wake of the failed coup d’état in July.

“Hundreds of Turkish journalist have been taken to court on charges of “insulting the president” or “terrorism.” Some have even been jailed without any charges brought against them. The number of cases of arbitrary imprisonment continues to rise.

“Aside from Turkey, the three other biggest jailers of journalists are China, Iran and Egypt. They alone account for more than two thirds of the world’s detained journalists.”

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Media Use in the Middle East 2017

For a comprehensive assessment on what is happening in the media in the Middle East- online and traditional- check out this survey by Northwestern University in Qatar. The findings are enlightening, especially the differences between the Arab countries.

I’ve put the executive summary below. For those who want to read the report more fully go to http://www.mideastmedia.org/survey/2017/uploads/file/NUQ_Media_Use_2017_v18%20FINAL.pdf

Below are the key findings from this study, which are explored in detail in the chapters that follow.

Media Use by Platform

Compared to five years ago, internet penetration rose in all six countries surveyed and most dramatically in Jordan, Lebanon, and Tunisia.

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Snapchat censors the news in Saudi Arabia

As a former journalist in the Middle East and one that continues to check out what is happening to journalism in the region, the move towards mixing the media and foreign policy in a very clear way is disturbing. While it is not surprising for the media to be mixed up with politics, as this is always been the case, it is disturbing when one form of social media bans different opinions from its platform.

This is what the Wall Street Journal says about it.

Snapchat Removes Al Jazeera Channel in Saudi Arabia

Snap says it is complying with local law; Al Jazeera calls move an ‘attempt to silence freedom of expression’

Snap, trying to grow its popularity as a destination for news articles and videos, is encountering new questions around the potential for government censorship of that news on its social-media app.

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How to know if news is fake or not?

AI can do many things and one of them is the writing of fake news. How do you know what is fake news and what is not? The answer simply is that you don’t which is what this article that appeared in Business Insider Australia  explains

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How important is shorthand?

Learning shorthand is almost a rite of passage at journalism school. Everyone learns it. Not everyone is good at it. And most people don’t continue to use it. Or if one does, often one develops a new shorthand, which I did.

So when I read this story that was published in The Guardian I was shocked. I’m sure that this student has developed other ways of taking notes.  

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How hoax news looks like real news

Fake news is becoming more common; and fake it is. What is fake news? How is it produced? What makes it look so real? With technology improving all the time its’s becoming easier to produce fake news and make it look like the real thing. Here’s how.

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Top US journalists give advice

I read this article about advice from top journalists that was published in the Columbia Journalism Review with interest. All had worked in America and were giving an American perspective. That’s fair enough. What is not, is for all readers to feel that they are failing if they do not obtain the source material to start with.

While it’s relatively straightforward to get information from Europe, or even Australia or New Zealand, as well as the US, it is not always easy in the Middle East, which does not have a culture of transparency or corporate governance. Most important, is that there is no Companies House. Moreover, few people in any of the Arab Gulf countries, Iraq or Egypt, or the rest of North Africa, will talk to the press, meaning that it is necessary to go through a press office. This all makes the job of being a journalist so much tougher.

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Digital journalism: why it's important

 

Journalism is about story telling, whether it is by words, by diagrams or by pictures, such as video. The latter is relatively new and many of us, like me, didn’t learn with video. This article that appeared on Mediashift explains how digital journalism has helped us.

What Educators Should Understand About Code and Journalism

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Grenfell reflects the accountability vacuum left by crumbling local press

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When there is so much going on, do you know what to write?

For the last few days I’ve been thinking about what I want to write next since there’s been so much happening in the world. From the terrorism acts in Manchester and London Bridge, the senseless killings in Iran, the Grenfell tower fire in West London, to the recent van running over a group of Muslims in North London- exactly where I used to visit a friend regularly, as it happens - the virtual lockdown of Qatar by the UAE, Saudi, Bahrain, Egypt, Mauratania and the Maldives and the forest fire in Portugal.

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The Gulf crisis and what it means for journalism in the region

The Gulf Arab crisis has prompted me to think about how it will affect journalism in the region. This is because I was a journalist based in Dubai for 8.5 years, first on a national newspaper, Khaleej Times, and then head of a newswire service, Mergermarket,that focused on mergers and acquisitions across North Africa and the Middle East.

 During that time, particularly in the latter years, I used to fly to Doha in Qatar a great deal, mainly on FlyDubai- a low cost airline that started in 2008. Emirates Airline supported the airline in its early stages. Consequently with no flights currently between the UAE and Qatar I would not have been able to do my job.

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Fake news vs real news: what to do about it

“Trust is more important than truth.”

 According to those who took part in a discussion “Fake News versus Real News at Amec’s Global Summit in Bangkok, this is typically the case in a “fake news” world.

 So what can journalists do about it? We can stop using the term “fake news”; we can ignore surveys which can be biased or tweaked towards certain results; we must always strive to retain balance in a story; we must be careful on social media because much fake news is a result of social media; and we should attribute to a comment to social media, such as“according to” a Twitter account rather than to a particular person”.

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Rivals H&F and TPG vye for Fairfax

Australia’s Fairfax, which controls many of the newspapers across New Zealand, may have had its proposed merger with New Zealand Media and Entertainment (NZME) rejected but it appears to have other options. One of them is to be taken over either by New York-based private equity firm Hellman & Friedman (H&F) or by a consortium led by TPG.

Merger and acquisition newswire service, Mergermarket (which was then owned by the Financial Times Group) was sold in 2013 to private equity firm, BC Parners, for GBP 382 million. (Since then another sale is being sought, according to reports).

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