Advocacy & ActionFeatureNews

Media Release: response to ARTK campaign

21 October 2019 AJF Media Release: We Need a Meeting of Minds The AJF welcomes the Australia’s Right to Know Coalition (ARTK) campaign for media freedom, which calls on the government to immediately address the lack of transparency damaging our democracy. We support all its campaign aims. This is a critical moment for both the media, the security services, and…
October 21, 2019

National security laws impeding journalism

The Saturday Paper (5th October) published a comprehensive look at how national security laws are impeding journalism. AJF co-founder and spokesperson Peter Greste was asked to contribute. You can view the piece here.   Photo credit: AAP/Lucas Coch
October 8, 2019

Singapore passes concerning ‘fake news’ law

Singapore passed a piece of legislation on Wednesday, which criminalises information deemed "prejudicial" to Singapore's security, public safety, "public tranquility," or to the "friendly relations of Singapore with other countries". There is concern that the broad parameters of this reform will lead to a more restricted press in the country. The power to charge anyone for acting outside the bounds…
October 3, 2019

NYT addresses the growing threat to journalism globally

A. G. Sulzberger, Publisher of The New York Times wrote and published the following article on 23 September. It is well worth the read. You can read the article here. "This is a worldwide assault on journalists and journalism. But even more important, it’s an assault on the public’s right to know, on core democratic values, on the concept of…
September 25, 2019
Advocacy & ActionFeatureNews

AJF joins call for Hong Kong to support press freedom

The AJF sent the following letter to Chief Executive Carrie Lam, joining the IFJ's call for the Hong Kong government to ensure press freedom is protected. 9th September 2019 Dear Chief Executive Lam I write as a founding director and spokesman of the Alliance for Journalists’ Freedom (AJF), an advocacy group dedicated to defending press freedom across the Asia–Pacific region,…
September 9, 2019
Advocacy & ActionNewsResearch

AJF Submission to the SSC Inquiry

Download the AJF's Submission hereThe Alliance for Journalists’ Freedom made a submission to the Press Freedom Inquiry referred to the Environment and Communications References Committee. The AJF's submission addressed parts a), b), c), e) and f) of the Inquiry Terms of Reference, largely retelling what we recommended prior to the AFP raids, in our White Paper, released on 09 May.The…
September 9, 2019

Peter Greste host of panel at Sydney Opera House

Amanda Meade explored the role philanthropy plays – and will continue to play – in the rapidly changing landscape of journalism.  This piece originally published in The Guardian. AJF's Peter Greste is hosting a panel on press freedom at Sydney Opera House's Antidote Festival, on September 01, with speakers Maria Ressa, Lina Attalah, Irina Borogan and Steve Coll on the…
August 22, 2019
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AJF Submission to the PJCIS Inquiry

Download the AJF's Submission here The Alliance for Journalists’ Freedom made a submission to the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security Inquiry into the impact of the exercise of law enforcement and intelligence powers on the freedom of the press. The AJF's submission addressed items b) and c) in the Inquiry Terms of Reference, and provided multiple recommendations under…
August 1, 2019
Advocacy & ActionFeatureNews

An open letter to Government

An open letter from MEAA supported by us was published in all major papers on Friday 13 June. The letter urges parliament to make the necessary legislative changes to protect journalists and whistleblowers in their everyday work. We have detailed those much needed changes in our White Paper. Read the letter here.   Photo credit: MEAA
June 15, 2019
Advocacy & ActionFeatureNews

Peter Greste: AFP raids an attack on the liberty of all Australians

The two raids by squads of Australian Federal Police officers on Wednesday sounded horribly familiar. This piece originally published in the Daily Telegraph. Images of them pushing their way into the offices of the ABC and the home of Daily Telegraph journalist Annika Smethurst, warrant in hand, riffling through personal belongings in a search for evidence recalled a night in…
June 7, 2019
Advocacy & ActionResearch

AJF White Paper plots law reform pathway for Press Freedom

Download the whitepaper hereThe Alliance for Journalists’ Freedom has released a White Paper that provides seven recommendations for legislative change to strengthen press freedom in Australia. The recommendations include a framework underpinned by a Media Freedom Act that balances press freedom and national security interests, protecting journalists engaged in their work from unwarranted prosecution or civil liability. Each of the…
May 14, 2019

CPJ: Defending press freedom is not the same as celebrating great journalism

The Committee to Protect Journalists' Director Joel Simon has written a piece for the Columbia Journalism Review that raises an important and very necessary distinction in the global conversation on press freedom. Published on World Press Freedom Day, Simon discusses the difference between celebrating good journalism and working to protect journalists & press freedom. Both are important, but we can…
May 4, 2019

TIME’s 10 most urgent cases of press freedom around the world

This year, on World Press Freedom Day (03 May), TIME have released a list of the 10 most urgent cases of press freedom around the world. View the list here. The AJF would add Maria Ressa, CEO of Rappler in the Philippines, to that list. The AJF is working for media freedom in the Asia-Pacific, so for us–alongside Wa-Lone and…
May 3, 2019

Julian Assange is no journalist: don’t confuse his arrest with press freedom

Listen to the SBS World News Radio interview with Biwa Kwan here: ( Standing before a media scrum in London, Julian Assange’s lawyer Jen Robinson declared that his arrest on Thursday, “set a dangerous precedent for all media and journalists in Europe and around the world.” She said if his extradition were allowed, any journalist could face charges for "publishing…
April 16, 2019

Amal Clooney appointed Special Envoy for press freedom

Human Rights Lawyer Amal Clooney has been appointed by UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt as the Special Envoy for media freedom. This is a critical position to defend democracy and strengthen the free press all over the world. Read more here. Photo credit: Reuters
April 6, 2019

Facebook announce news service

Mark Zuckerberg recently announced Facebook's intention to launch a new news service. In conversation with Axel Springer CEO's Mathias Döpfner, Zuckerberg discussed the need for this service to enable and strengthen the following: High quality, trustworthy journalism and consideration of the level to which it should or shouldn't be curated; Monetisation, to ensure fairness to publishers, given Facebook is on…
April 2, 2019

Maria Ressa arrested again, over Anti-Dummy Law

Rappler CEO and executive editor, Maria Ressa, has been arrested again, this time for an alleged breach of the Anti-Dummy Law, which seeks to prevent interference of foreign investors within media entities in the Philippines. Rappler stands by its assertion of independence in this regard. Ressa is expected to post bail shortly, for the second time in 2019. For further…
March 29, 2019

BBC to create journalism foundation in Britain to address decline in local news

The BBC recently announced plans to launch a new organisation to fund local journalism in Britain. Here are some facts about it: The new not-for-profit, set up in conjunction with Google and Facebook, is to be called the Local Democracy Foundation with a remit to report on council meetings, crime, and other local news. Google and Facebook's financial backing of the…
March 22, 2019

CPJ marks International Women’s Day

The Committee to Protect Journalists marks International Women's Day by highlighting the cases of female journalists jailed around the world for doing their jobs. Here are a few of the facts: According to CPJ's recent census, 32 of the 251 journalists currently in jail are women In the Asia-Pacific region, 6 women are imprisoned in China and 2 in Vietnam…
March 8, 2019

UN leader calls for action to protect journalists

The head of the United Nations has called on governments and the international community to protect journalists and media workers at a time when attacks on the media have become “the new normal”. Secretary-General António Guterres issued the call to action in a speech to the Association of United Nations Correspondents. In just over a decade, more than a thousand…
February 28, 2019

Maria Ressa arrested in the Philippines

Maria Ressa, award winning journalist and CEO of Rappler has been arrested in the Philippines, under the accusation of "cyber libel". Shortly after receiving the arrest warrant, she told CNN reporters "the rule of law has been broken to the point that I can't see it." The grounds for arrest are blurred and the arrest warrant was issued too late…
February 14, 2019

Peter Greste on 2ser: the need for a Media Freedom Act

"Journalists need to be the eyes, the ears and the voice for the public... this isn't about holding to account for the sake of it, this is about protecting our democracy." – Peter Greste 2ser 107.3's Tess Connery spoke with Peter Greste this morning to discuss the need for a Media Freedom Act in Australia. Listen to the interview here.…
February 12, 2019

The Case For A Media Freedom Act

This is the op-ed by Prof. Peter Greste published in The Australian this morning, to start our campaign for a Media Freedom Act.   One of the central tenets of a successful liberal democracy is press freedom. As voters, we employ our elected officials to run the government on our behalf, and as with all bosses, we have a right…
February 5, 2019

Netanyahu’s complicated relationship with media

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s relationship with the press has reportedly fractured and become increasingly complex. According to The Economist, Netanyahu, once the golden boy in the eyes of Israeli media,  has created a tangled relationship and then used negative media to his advantage by “playing the victim”, including erecting a billboard of four offending journalists. Read more here.  (To read…
February 1, 2019

A journalist’s 544 days in an Iranian jail

It has been 1,110 days since Jason Rezaian, then The Washington Post’s bureau chief in Tehran, was released from Iran’s notorious Evin prison. In that time, he has recuperated, studied at Harvard on a fellowship, restarted his life in Washington along with his wife, Yeganeh, and returned to The Post’s headquarters as an opinion writer. For more read the Washington…
January 30, 2019

Layoffs – the tough reality of online publishing.

Buzzfeed is laying off 15% of staff in a bid to turn a profit, reports the NYT. To support the loss making news division, Buzzfeed has introduced businesses like selling cookware at Walmart and a toy store in New York. Read more here.   Photo credit: Thomson Reuters
January 25, 2019

Myanmar court rejects appeal by jailed Reuters journalists

A court in Myanmar has rejected an appeal by two reporters of the Reuters news agency, sentenced to seven years in jail for breaking the country's Official Secrets Act, in a case that rallied press freedom advocates. Lawyers for Wa Lone, 32, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 28, had filed the appeal in November against their conviction, citing evidence of a police set-up and lack of proof of…
January 14, 2019

A freer press; good news for Gambia

Journalists in Gambia have launched a self-regulatory body they hope will offer legitimacy, and far more freedom, to media emerging from a dictatorship that ruled the tiny West African nation for more than two decades. During the 22 years of former President Yahya Jammeh’s rule, journalists were regularly abducted, tortured and killed. The new government has vowed new freedoms after…
January 3, 2019

53 journalist deaths tied to work in 2018

This week the Committee to Protect Journalists released a report that revealed that 53 journalists have died as a result of dangerous work this year. This is the rise from the 2017 figures, which totalled  47 journalist deaths related to their work. The report found that the deadliest country for journalists this year has been Afghanistan. Thirteen journalists were killed,…
December 21, 2018

Time Magazine: The war on journalists and truth

Time Magazine has named a collective of journalists their 'Person of the Year' for 2019.  Honourees include murdered journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, imprisoned Reuters journalists U Wa Lone and U Kyaw Soe Oo, Maria Ressa founder of news-startup, Rappler in the Philippines and the staff of the Capital Gazette newspapers in Maryland. The magazine heralds these journalists as guardians of the truth and goes on…
December 12, 2018

Hungary: How a free press can die

An insightful article and opinion piece by the New York Times that narrates the gradual decline of media freedom in Hungary after the election of far-right prime minister, Viktor Orban. First, the article. "Hungary’s leading news website, Origo, had a juicy scoop: A top aide to the far-right prime minister, Viktor Orban, had used state money to pay for sizable but…
December 4, 2018

Jamal Khashoggi: What the Arab world needs most is free expression

In his very last column at The Washington Post, Jamal Khashoggi stressed the importance of press freedom and the lack of action from the international community. "I was recently online looking at the 2018 “Freedom in the World” report published by Freedom House and came to a grave realization. There is only one country in the Arab world that has been…
October 19, 2018
Media Releases

Rebuilding trust in the media must come from the ground up

The Alliance for Journalist Freedom (AJF) believes one of the key questions currently facing the media is how to rebuild trust in journalism. Speaking on a panel discussing How to Build Trust in Contemporary Journalism at the University of Tasmania, AFJ director Peter Greste said there are several fundamental questions that need public discussion. “We need to rethink the news…
September 13, 2018

NYT answers call to fight “dirty war on free press”

The New York Times today published an editorial that responds to the Boston Globe's call for outlets across America to publish editorials that denounce President Trump's hostility to the media. "In 2018, some of the most damaging attacks are coming from government officials. Criticizing the news media — for underplaying or overplaying stories, for getting something wrong — is entirely…
August 16, 2018
FeatureMedia ReleasesResearch

AJF Collaborates with Top University on Research

Journalism freedom fighter Professor Peter Greste is spearheading a unique research collaboration to protect media independence, the role of the media in democracy, and the safety of journalists. The University of Queensland and the Alliance for Journalists’ Freedom (AJF) have signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on research projects about many aspects of media freedom. Professor Greste, who is also…
June 28, 2018

Crisis in Turkey

The New York-based Committee for the Protection of Journalists is blunt in its assessment of the state of journalism around the world today: “There has never been a more dangerous time to be a journalist,” it declares in its #FreeThePress campaign.
June 28, 2018

Fake News vs. Truth Seekers

The best weapon against fake news is true news. So when ‘Trust me, I’m a journalist’ fails to charm, should journalists work harder at their credibility? ‘Fighting Fakes – the Nordic Way’ considers ways to improve journalists’ reputations as one way to counter fake news. Written by journalists and media professionals and launched in May on World Press Freedom Day,…
June 26, 2018

How Journalism Became One Of The Most Dangerous Jobs In The World

A few months ago, an American organization called Freedom House released the results of its annual survey of press freedom around the world. It’s stark conclusion – it is at its worst state in 13 years. What does that mean in practical terms? Well, last year, 79 journalists were killed doing their jobs. It isn’t a record high – that…
June 8, 2018

Bishop’s Myanmar call tacit support for Greste

Peter Greste’s campaign for global press freedom has received a boost from Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, who has made her first public statement on Myanmar’s jailing of two Reuters journalists. Ms Bishop spoke for the first time about the journalists’ plight after being contacted by The Australian, following Greste’s call for the Australian government to muster all of its diplomatic…
June 6, 2018
Media Releases

Australian organisation to fight for the future of journalism

Today, Peter Greste, while being awarded the Australian Press Council’s 2018 Press Freedom Medal, announced the formation of an organisation to fight for journalist freedom. The Alliance for Journalists’ Freedom (AJF) will advocate to preserve media freedom in Australia and to campaign for a freer press and journalists’ safety in the Asia Pacific region. “Press freedom around the world is…
May 3, 2018