Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Bland and descriptive - and free speech?

A Singapore clarification from Alan Knight, the Oz board member of AMIC:
"I recall saying from the podium in Singapore, I thought the WJEC declaration was bland and descriptive. I also wondered why there was no reference to freedom of speech or the Declaration of Human Rights.
"Just for the record, the journalism education declaration was formulated by the WJEC which is a completely separate organisation from AMIC which in this case merely hosted the conference."

Just to add my few words, I tend to dismiss the recent negatives about "development journalism" - it is often misunderstood by western journos, particularly from Oz and NZ (most NZ j-schools cover little about news values outside the Kiwi environment). Vigorous development journalism as often practised in the Philippines and the Pacific, for example, uncovers corruption, is committed to media freedom and demands accountability - and usually requires a level of personal courage from journalists rarely needed in western media environments.
Alan noted the closing day speech by Anwar Ibrahim - this was inspired, even brilliant. It was worth being at this conference to hear him! Certainly he was one of the highlights for me.

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