Thursday, June 2, 2011

[pima.nius] Media Release: Fiji - Pacific Journalists Offer to Discuss Media Freedoms in Fiji

1:38 PM |

via PFF and IFJ

Media Release: Fiji


June 2, 2011



Pacific Journalists Offer to Discuss Media Freedoms in Fiji



The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) welcomes an offer made
by Pacific journalists to visit Fiji to discuss fair and balanced
reporting and media freedoms with the country's military regime.



IFJ project associate the Pacific Freedom Forum (PFF) made the offer in
the wake of a May 31 statement by Fiji's Information secretary Sharon
Smith-Johns calling on all journalists there to "Think Fiji first" and
report in a "fair and balanced way".



"Fair and balanced reporting can only come when journalists and media
workers have the freedom to report, which is impossible at present under
the terms of Fiji's Media Decree," IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline
Park said.



"The IFJ welcomes this initiative by Pacific journalists to engage with
Fiji's regime and fellow journalists working there, in an open
discussion of these significant issues that affect the country's media
industry.



"We hope Fijian authorities will accept the invitation and
constructively engage with the journalists who have put forward this
suggestion."



The "Think Fiji first" call came in the wake of reporting over the May
defection to Tonga by former regime and military insider Ratu Tevita
Mara, son of the nation's founding Prime Minister.



Other developments in recent weeks have shown how the Media Industry
Development Decree is taking its toll. The Fiji Times website, averaging
three quarters of a million hits a month, went offline without
explanation on April 18 before coming back online on May 30.



Managing Editor Fred Wesley confirmed that the need to meet the
requirements of the decree had forced the site's suspension, Pacific
Scoop reported. Under the decree, stories of more than 50 words must
have a "byline" naming the writer of the story, and pictures must be
captioned and identify the source of the image. The website now includes
these features.



Meanwhile, decree clauses on cross-media ownership have also made
uncertain times for jobs in the industry. Employees for Mai Life
magazine are anxiously awaiting a looming deadline, believed to be at
the end of June, when Judith Ragg must relinquish her founding stake in
the magazine, because her husband Richard Broadbridge heads broadcast
channel Mai TV.





For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0919



The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131 countries



Find the IFJ on Twitter: @ifjasiapacific



Find the IFJ on Facebook here
<http://www.facebook.com/pages/IFJ-Asia-Pacific/144789058887748>






--
Lisa Williams-Lahari
Media Freelancer
Regional Coordinator, IFJ Pacific Media for Democracy and Human Rights
Project
Ph Mobile: 677-7574230
Skype: lisalahari

* "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that
matter."-- Martin Luther King Jr.  *

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pacific islands media association
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aotearoa, new zealand
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pacific islands media association
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aotearoa, new zealand
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The pima.nius googlegroup is a facility for discussion and distributing information. Content sent by this googlegroup are forwarded from various networks and media publications.
 
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