“Silencing the truth leads to death and suffering. Today, power-holders repeatedly challenge, criticise and undermine the media at a time when people need the facts to protect themselves from COVID-19,” says Quinn McKew, Executive Director of ARTICLE 19. “The importance of protecting information as a public good has rarely had more urgency.
“As we and our partners prepare our contributions to World Press Freedom Day 2021, hosted by UNESCO, we look forward to exploring the diverse and interdependent ways we need to see information as a public good.”
ARTICLE 19 will be taking part in a week-long series of events, and activities focusing on the safety and protection of journalists, the role of women journalists, the right to protest and what has been done to support media throughout the pandemic. Much of the discussion will be explored in depth by our regional experts in Bangladesh, Brazil and Kenya.
The critical importance of media literacy as a skill that is learned and embedded in education systems around the world is one of the critical bullwarks against the undermining of public information and rights to expression. Various contributions during the week will explore the issue in more detail, making connections between how media influence is exercised and how individuals can understand the ways it affects their participation in society.
ARTICLE 19 will also host an event to hear from UN special rapporteurs defending the right to information and expression and the challenges they see ahead.
You can find out more about the World Press Freedom Day programme.