Institute of Mass Information published its monitoring of journalists' right for the first half of 2015. Physical aggression against journalists in Ukraine started to decrease: for the first half of 2015 IMI experts registered 23 assaults against journalists in Ukraine, which is almost 11 times less than in the same period of 2014 (249 assaults), and by 1.5 times less than in the second half of 2014 (37 assaults).
For you attention, the recent weekly briefer for Ukrainian media sector developments over period of June 25 - July 1, 2015. You may subscribe for weekly briefers by sending request to email@example.com.
U-Media gathered the most important news over week April 9-15, 2015 that influenced the media development and freedom of speech in Ukraine. If you want to receive the weekly updadtes regularly, please send us email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the request to be subscribed.
Internews office in Ukraine briefed the most important developments in Ukrainian media sector over last week: the Parliament rejected considering a draft law that expands authority of the National Council on TV and Radio in deprivation of licences, Firtash and Levochkin obtained a full package of stocks for leading Ukrainian TV channel Inter, pro-Russian authorities in Crimea increased pressure on journalsits and media freedoms at the peninsula. Please read more туцы in U-Media weekly briefer.
U-Media prepared overview of recent important news related to media development in Ukraine: National Council on TV and Radio wants to receive the authority to temporarily suspend (for 3 months) the license of broadcasters whose work threatens the national security, territorial integrity and the lives and safety of citizens; Ukrainian Parliament registered draftlaw on amendments to the law on TV and Radio; IMI fixed 6 cases of physical agression against journalists; the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine and Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR) negotiated upon the journalists' work in Donbass area that is under the DNR control. Please read more news in weekly briefer >>
At the beginning of year 2015, the Parliament voted changes to the Law on Public Broadcasting, the monopoly digital TV signal provider Zeonbud decoded TV signal due to decision of National Council on TV and Radio, State Committee on TV and Radio publicized results of its monitoring of national and regional governement web-sites, Cabinet of Ministers decided to stop supporting Ukrainian newsroom of Euronews channel. Those and other news are described in the last weekly briefer of Ukrainian Media Project (U-Media).
Last week (December 18-24) media sector news of Ukraine: Anti-Monopoly Committee recognized the monopoly of digital TV signal provider Zeonbud, Crimean broadcaser Chernomorskaya TRC got back its arrested equipment from Crimean governors, suspecting NTN channel due to tax evasion, expansion of Ukrainian First National TV channel to Belarus, survey of media audience about media influence on political crises in Ukraine and other news.
Weekly overview of Ukrainian media sector news: Reporters without Borders found Ukraine as one of the most dangerous countries for journalsits, media NGOs in Ukraine and Russia urge the journalists of both countries to not burn the informational war, EU encourages the Ministry of Information to protect media freedom and produce high quality product for audience abroad. To subscribe for U-Media weekly briefers, please write us on email@example.com.
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Ukrainian Media Sector News over period of June 25 - July 1, 2015
Media Environment During Conflict
Information Security Concept is Under Discussion
- June 30 – A roundtable was held at UKRINFORM to discuss the Concept of Information Security of Ukraine developed by the Expert Council at the Ministry of Information Policy of Ukraine. The Deputy Minister of Information Policy of Ukraine, Mr. Artem Bidenko, the Co-Chair of the Expert Council, Mr. Serhyi Danylenko, the advisor to the Minister for Strategic Communications, Ms. Alina Frolova, and the members of the Expert Council participated. Mr. Konstyantyn Kvurt, the Internews-Ukraine chair of the board, moderated the discussion. He emphasized on the importance of receiving public support that was missing earlier, in the process of the development of the security-related documents. That is why the Expert Council is launching a series of public discussions to upgrade the Concept. The Co-Chair of the Expert Council, Mr. Serhyi Danylenko, said that the draft Concept is open for proposal of the public, the expert community and the state institutions while the national informational environment is being formed. Serhyi Danylenko added that the discussions over the Concept will start in the regions of Ukraine next week, http://mip.gov.ua/news/436.html; http://www.telekritika.ua/kontekst/2015-07-01/108763
Concept of Information Security of Ukraine in brief:
The goal of the Concept is to ensure the informational sovereignty and protection of the national informational environment of Ukraine.
According to the Concept, two key activities of the state institutions are:
- Sustainable development of Ukraine’s informational environment with the purpose to counteract external and internal threats;
- Establishment of the effective protection system from informational threats.
Threats towards freedom of speech are the following:
- Media owners’ interference in the editorial policies;
- Non-availability of the legislation for strengthening the role of media employees in the process of editorial policy implementation by media outlets of all forms of property;
- Monopolization of media ownership which allows influencing on media consumers’ consciousness;
- Applying administrative and legislative pre-conditions to restrict freedom of speech, manipulate by public opinion through the influence of political organizations, commercial entities and certain individuals.
The key institutions for implementation of the state information security policy:
- Security Service of Ukraine;
- Ministry of Interior;
- Ministry of Defense;
- Office of External Intelligence.
Expert Councils at the authorized national executive bodies for implementation of the state information policy are considered the key tools for public control over the process of realization of the information security policy. Expert Councils monitor the efficiency of the legislation indicated in this Concept and monitor Concept implementation, http://mip.gov.ua/done_img/d/30-project_08_06_15.pdf
Concept of Information Security MightGo into Force in September
- June 30 - The Ministry of Information Policy (MIP) hopes that the Parliament will adopt the Concept of Information Security of Ukraine in September 2015, as Mr. Artem Bidenko, the Deputy Minister, said at the roundtable at Ukrinform: "Public hearings in the format of roundtables will be held in the regions. In September, the Concept will be submitted to the Parliament, and a pessimistic forecast is that the Parliament will approve it by December. Whereas an optimistic one is that the Concept will be passed in three readings as early, as in September.” As noted by the chief of the National Institute for Strategic Studies, Mr. Dmitry Dubov, the Concept of Information Security consists of the following sections: basic provisions, principles of national policy in the sector of information security, the information security mechanisms and the stakeholders, and the system of public control. The Concept introduced a number of new national policy provisions and definitions, such as the national information policy, the national information space, the national information product, the information sector, as well as an array of the issues related to the the cyber_security, http://www.ukrinform.ua/ukr/news/u_stetsya_spodivayutsya_shcho_kontseptsiyu_informbezpeki_uhvalyat_u_veresni_2069270; http://imi.org.ua/news/49434-mininformpolitiki-spodivaetsya-scho-rada-uhvalit-kontseptsiyu-informbezpeki-u-veresni.html
First National Plans to Build Modern Convergent Newsroom
- June 30 – First National TV channel management in tandem with Danish experts are planning to convert the channel’s abandoned warehouse into a modern convergent newsroom. "With the support of a Danish public broadcaster, Mymedia project, on July 3, we will present a large project of construction of a new convergent newsroom from the scratch. The newsroom will include the TV, radio and internet departments. There is an abandoned warehouse on the territory of the channel, which will be re-constructed into a new modern newsroom, equipped according to the latest standards and by all communication modes. This newsroom will become the best in Ukraine," - Oleksander Harebin, deputy chief of the First National said. The management plans to raise the viewership of the future public broadcaster. The modernization process is planned for September 2015 through September 2016, http://stv.mediasapiens.ua/reformuvannya/movlennya/u_veresni_2016go_ntku_planue_stvoriti_obednaniy_nyuzrum_kharebin/
SSU Charges Distributor of Separatist Materials in Chernihiv
- June 30 – According to the “Chernihiv Monitor” on-line media, the officers of the Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) in Chernihiv region exposed a resident of Chernihiv who disseminated materials with the separatist content via social networks. The statement said the suspect acted following the order of the Luhans’k People’s Republic representatives and placed propaganda materials in the “V Kontakte” (In Contact) social network, in its regional and nationwide groups. The propaganda materials called for the support and financing of illegal armed groups operating in the temporarily occupied territory, to replenish them with new members and establish the “Novorossia” armed forces. According to the SSU, the publications strove to display national intolerance, contributed to provoking national hostility, and contained calls to change the boundaries of the territory and the state border of Ukraine. The author added screenshots of anti-Ukrainian graffiti and slogans. The SSU investigators opened criminal proceedings on this fact under Part 2, Article 110 (violation of the territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. If convicted, the offens carries a prison term of 5 to 10 years, http://www.telekritika.ua/pravo/2015-06-30/108716; http://monitor.cn.ua/ua/style/33839
UAH100,000 Insurance to be Required for Embedded Journalists in ATO Zone
- June 26 – As reported by the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, participants in the Embedded Journalists Project (embedding journalists with a military unit in the ATO area) that is run by the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine and the Ministry of Information Policy of Ukraine are required to get life and health insurance from members of the Insurance Business Association, the League of Insurance Organizations of Ukraine, and the Ukrainian Insurance Federation. As Mr. Vyacheslav Cherniakhovs’ky, the Head of the Insurance Committee of the Ukrainian Financial Analysts’ Society reported to Telekritika, weekly insurance with the coverage of UAH100 thousand (about USD5 thousand) in case of a journalist’s death costs a media editorial office UAH1 thousand. Insurance is a must for participants of the Embedded Journalists Project. The amount insured shall be no less than UAH100 thousand or its equivalent in foreign currency at the rate of the National Bank of Ukraine on the day the contract is signed, http://www.telekritika.ua/pravo/2015-06-26/108668.
Occupation Authorities Ban Tatar & Radio Liberty Outlets to Work in Crimea
- June 26 –The so-called ‘authorities’ of the Russia-occupied Crimea compiled a list of media outlets which are not allowed to cover public events held on the peninsula. That was informed by Ms. Liliya Budzhurova, the ATR Deputy Director General, in her Facebook on June 25, 2015. The list includes: the “Crimea. Realities” on-line media, the QHA Crimean and Tatar news agency, and two media that belong to the ATR media holding, i.e. the ATR Crimean and Tatar TV channel and the “15 Minutes” on-line media. According to Ms. Budzhurova, the corresponding order was issued in the letter of the so-called Ministry of Internal Policy and Information of Crimea, http://www.telekritika.ua/pravo/2015-06-26/108655
U-MEDIA Partners’ Activities
- June 30 – Telekritika presented the results of the sociological studies “Citizens’ attitude towards media, propaganda and media reforms during the conflict period”. This survey was conducted by the Kyiv International Institute for Sociology (KIIS) contracted with Telekritika. The results of this survey displayed that 72% of Ukrainians get news mostly from Ukrainian TV channels and Internet media (43% watch TV only, 29% use Internet). 22% regularly refer both to Ukrainian and Russian sources of information (9% of them – TV viewers only). 6% practically are not interested in news from any of mentioned media. KIIS Director General Mr. Volodymyr Paniotto explained in what way the survey was organized: “The idea of the index was to select key messages of Russian propaganda and track their effectiveness on the territory of Ukraine. The messages are: Euro-Maidan was organized by Americans and, as a result, nationalists came to the power and threatened Russian speaking population of Ukraine, it became possible to save Crimea, and people rebelled in Donetsk, and, in fact, “khunta” which came to the power are fighting against its people. The results which we got in the regions are the index that varies from 0 to 100. 100 – it`s when all people support all thesis of Russian propaganda, 0 – when there is no support at all”.
The highest index of Russian propaganda messages effectiveness is in Donetsk region – 50 and in Luhansk region – 38, but the researchers questioned only that part which is controlled by Ukraine. According to Mr. Paniotto, Kharkiv and Odesa regions inclined the most to support Russian propaganda after Donetsk and Luhansk regions, http://osvita.mediasapiens.ua/mediaprosvita/research/ukraintsi_vtrachayut_doviru_do_zmi_doslidzhennya_kmis_ta_go_telekritika/
Small Percentage of Ukrainians Know Who Owns TV Channels
- June 30 – Most Ukrainians know nothing about who owns Ukrainian TV channels. Moreover, the level of interest in the issue is also not high enough: only one third of respondents find it important to have access to this information. The results of a poll that the Kyiv International Institute for Sociology (KIIS) conducted by the CSO Telekritika’s order show that according to respondents, any Ukrainian media editorial policy is determined by their owners primarily; 45% of the respondents believe that the media owner impacts the media mostly; 21% think that this is the state, and 11% - that journalists and editors are doing it by themselves. Only 4% said that the editorial policy is primarily determined by the society and 18% have no definite opinion on the matter. The society has not developed a clear conviction that one should know the TV channels owners; 34% of respondents said that is highly or somewhat important for them to know the real owners of the TV channels they watch. Instead, for 40% of respondents and more this issue is not highly important or not important at all. 25% do not have a clear view on the issue, http://osvita.mediasapiens.ua/mediaprosvita/research/ukraintsi_ne_znayut_khto_volodie_ukrainskimi_telekanalami_sotsopituvannya/.
- June 24 - First National Channel in cooperation with Suspilnist Foundation produced the 12th issue of the talk show “Debates: PRO”. The program’s topic was “Minimum Wages and Pensions: to Raise it or Not?” The representatives of the executive and lawmaking branches of power and experts on this topic were invited to defend the opposite points of view. They were: Oleksand Drozdyk, MP (“Narodnyy Front” (People’s Front)); Roman Kachur, Deputy Minister of Finance; Dmytro Boyarchuk, economist; Ivan Krulko, MP (“Bat’kivschina”); Vasyl Shevchenko, First Deputy Minister of Social Policy; and Maksym Latsiba, expert on social policy. The audience offered several ways to solve the problem and experts voted for the most needed to their minds. They are: 1. To intensify the fight with corruption; 2. To focus efforts on social assistance to those who badly need it; 3. To optimize tax police. The full program is available at http://bit.ly/1LHPBCA.
July 2-3, Chernivtsi - Independent Media Trade Union of Ukraine will organize a 2-day training on physical security for journalists from the region. The journalists will learn how to prepare and plan the trip to the conflict area; how to behave in the transport and at the block posts; how to avoid kidnapping and how to behave if it happened. The journalists will also have practical exercises, http://bit.ly/1JwNIIn.
- July 2-3, Kyiv – Internews Ukraine will organize a 2-day training on Europe integration and internal reforms in Ukraine for journalists from all over the country. The participants will receive additional knowledge and skills for a more interesting, correct and complete coverage of the European integration, in particular the connection between reforms and integration, http://internews.ua/2015/06/eurointegration-training/.
- July 5, Slov’yansk – Institute of Mass Information will participate in the forum “Donbas Ukraine”. IMI experts will participate in the panel discussion “Journalism standards during the conflict’. It is planned to discuss the following issues: ethical challenges for journalists covering the conflict in the territory of their own country; relationships between media and the state authorities; creation of the editorial policies on conflict terminology and vocabulary, http://bit.ly/1GNTTBU.
- July 6, Kyiv – Media Law Institute (MLI) will organize a round table discussion on the TV digital switchover. The experts will discuss the de-monopolization of the market, https://www.facebook.com/MediaLawInstitute.
- July 7, Kyiv – Internews will organize a1-day training on Martus Platform, i.e. a free, open source, secure information collection and management tool that empowers human rights activists to be stronger in their fight against injustice and abuse. Internews will bring local digital security experts for the training who then will distribute information about the tool among media outlets in the East and human rights organizations.