18 November 2016

INSIDE ETHICS BLOG: Facebook, Google questioned over false news

"There is nothing you can write about now that people won't believe."

The Washington Post's interview with Paul Horner about his fake-news empire makes for concerning reading. Despite now saying that he thinks that he helped swing the US election Trump's way, that was not his intention. Instead he blames people for being "dumber" and not fact-checking before sharing his hoax stories. 

At meetings this week at the European Commission the EJN has led calls for Google, Facebook and others to be more transparent and accountable in how they are responding to hate speech and false news. Jeff Jarvis is worth reading on this, arguing that we should "Be Careful What You Wish For":

"Both my friends in media and at Facebook are wrong about aspects of the post-election fake-news firestorm. Each is refusing to admit its own culpability and as a result they are missing the opportunity to work together and improve the situation."

As always, I look forward to hearing your thoughts. 

Tom Law, EJN Director of Campaigns and Communications

Next Generation News Experience

"All publishers are at a crossroads, whether they want to admit it or not. They are left with a simple choice: either lead the charge to redefine journalism and their products, or become mere content providers for external platforms, making them the de facto publishers of our time. To put this in Matrix terms I know my tech peers can relate to, publishers need to choose between the red pill or the blue pill." Espen Sundve VP Product Management at Schibsted

There are some fascinating articles in this year's Schibsted Future Report, which looks at new trends and phenomena that are shaping the world around us. You can download the full report here. The sections must relevant to media and journalism are: 

Guidelines for ethical media audits: Send us your feedback

The EJN is undertaking a series of internal audits with media outlets from South East Europe and Turkey to address a number of challenging questions, such as how does your media company protect its editorial independence and respect national and international labour standards. Issues of collective bargaining and gender equality as well as provision of health and life insurance to vulnerable staff members are also being tackled.

The audits are part of UNESCO's Building Trust in Media in South East Europe and Turkey project, whose objective is to build a culture of media professionalism to restore confidence in journalism and hence strengthen freedom of expression in the region.

Read more about the project and give us your feedback about the audit.

The role of media in development and democracy

The EJN took part in an Associação para a Cooperação Entre os Povos discussion on ‘Media and Development’ in partnership with the Gulbenkian Foundation on 16 November 2016. Chris Elliott, a trustee of the EJN and former readers’ editor of The Guardian, spoke about the role of quality journalism and media development in democracy.

Facebook fake-news writer: ‘I think Donald Trump is in the White House because of me’ (Washington Post)
Trump victory prompts deep soul-searching in the news media
SOMALIA: The causes and consequences of Somali youth migration to Europe (RVI)
SOUTH AFRICA: South Africa's Independent Media Quits Press Council (iMedia Ethics)
US: Inside Donald Trump's Fraught Relationship With the Press (ABC)
US: Obama: We must guard against fake news (Politico)
US: Google is helping Full Fact create an automated, real-time fact-checker (WIRED)
JAMAICA: Grief Porn: Journalism ethics in the media coverage of mourning (Jamaica Observer)
INDIA: PIB’s ‘media regulator’ tweet sets off alarm bells (The Hindu)
INDIA: Press Council not a 'paper tiger', says PCI Chairman (Greater Kasmir)
INDIA: ‘Reliable information is the heartbeat of journalism’ (Eastern Mirror)

INDONESIA: Press council calls for journalists’ protection (Jakarta Post)
UK: New Bill gives powers to secretly grab journalists' call records intact (Press Gazette)
ISRAEL: Press Council head ‘concerned’ by PM’s attacks on media (Times of Israel)

New Translations of the EJN 5-Point Test for Hate Speech

The Council of Europe, European Federation of Journalists, UNESCO, and other partners have helped us translate the EJN 5-point test for hate speech into 7 new languages including Albanian, Dutch, Indonesian, Macedonian, Serbian, Turkish, Ukrainian. The test is already available in Arabic, English and French.

Visit the Accountable Journalism database of codes of media ethics
Ethical Journalism Network releases new guidelines for migration coverage (IJNET)
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