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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 email@example.com 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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- Дата: 18-12-2014
Ukrainian Media Sector News for a week of December 11-17, 2014
HOT MEDIA SECTOR NEWS
Media Environment during Conflict and When New Government Is in Place
Minister of Information Promises to Resign in Peacetime
- December 16 – According to the Ukraiins’ka Pravda, the Minister of the Information Policy, Mr. Yuriy Stets, reported at a round table meeting on 15 December 2014, that he would resign from his post in peacetime. Not for the first time, the Minister stated that the newly established agency is required for the wartime in Ukraine exclusively. “In peacetime, the Ministry is not necessary. In that case, I will offer my resignation and will be the first one to say that the Ministry is unnecessary,” Mr. Yuriy Stets said. “This Ministry was offered to establish as a copy of the Ministries existed in the UK, USA, and France in wartimes. I think that the Ministry is in demand for the time of the military aggression only, and once the war ends, we will not need it any longer. Until then, they can approve and implement the information security concept and establish internal communication between all authorities. When the military aggression fades, the existence of this Ministry will be senseless, http://www.telekritika.ua/kontekst/2014-12-16/101598
Reporters without Borders: Ukraine is One of the Most Dangerous Countries for Journalists
- December 16 – Ukraine ranked third in anti-rating with 6 journalists murdered, it appeared to be the country with the highest number of kidnappings and it topped anti-rating on the number of arrests of journalists as well as the number of attacks and intimidation towards journalists. According to the Mediasapiens, this information was released in the report on violence against journalists in 2014, which was placed on the Reporters without Borders international organization website. According to the Reporters without Borders, 66 journalists were killed in 2014. Hence, the number of journalists killed for the past decade has reached 720 people. Ukraine with its sorrowful statistics of 6 killed journalists appeared in the top five countries with the highest negative numbers: 15 journalists were killed in Syria, 7 were killed in Palestine, 4 – in Iraq, and 4 – in Libya. The organization also stated that in 2014, 119 journalists were kidnapped (Ukraine became the country with the highest number of 33 kidnappings) and 40 journalists are held captive so far. The total number of kidnappings in 2014 increased by 35% vs. 2013. Ukraine fell to and topped the anti-rating as for the number of journalists arrested: during the year, 47 reporters were arrested in Ukraine, 46 reporters were arrested in Egypt, 45 – in Nepal, 45 – in Iran, and 34 – in Venezuela. Overall, there were 853 journalists detentions registered in the world. As regards the number of attacks and intimidations towards journalists, Ukraine topped the anti-rating list of 215 cases registered. Venezuela is #2 country on the list (134 cases), then, Turkey appears with 117 cases registered, Libya (97 cases), and China (84 ones). Generally, 1846 media people were attacked or threatened in 2014, http://imi.org.ua/news/46931-ukrajina-e-odnieyu-iz-naynebezpechnishih-krajin-dlya-jurnalistiv-reporteri-bez-kordoniv.html
National TV Company Stops Contract with Savik Shuster
- December 15 – Mr. Zurab Alasania, Director General of the National Television Company of Ukraine (NTCU, the First National Channel), has officially informed Mr. Savik Shuster, CEO of the “Savik Shuster Studio” Production about the Suspension of Cooperation as it is not feasible to prolong a contract to produce the “Shuster Live” talk show in 2015. Mr. Alasaniya released a copy of the letter in Facebook. The Contract signed on 6 March 2014, is valid until 31 December 2014, and it shall be automatically extended in case there is no warning that it is impossible to extend it. Mr. Zurab Alasaniya has officially warned Mr. Savik Shuster that it would be impossible to extend the contract due to the significant changes in the NTCU 2015 broadcast grid, which is related in particular to the need to execute the government contractual work, and given the fact that the considerable costs are required to develop the NTCU ‘s new TV projects, http://www.telekritika.ua/rinok/2014-12-15/101593
ATO Spokesman Oleksiy Dmytrashkivsky Quits His Position
- December 15 – As Mr. Oleksiy Dmytrashkivskyi reported in his Facebook, he quitted as ATO spokesman because of an anonymous complaint containing the allegations of obstructing journalists’ work. “I was immediately recalled to Kyiv. The reason for the recall is the anonymous appeal where I was accused of obstructing the work of journalists”, he said and thanked journalists for cooperation. In his comments to the Telekritika Mr. Dmytrashkivskyi informed that no reason for withdrawal has been provided. “In the morning, I have been told that I would be replaced on December 21. Later on, Mr. Vladyslav Selezniov (a spokesman of the General Staff – the TK) called me and read out the anonymous letter complaining at me, which, according to him, was proved by the Chief of the General Staff”, http://www.telekritika.ua/profesija/2014-12-15/101591
National Journalists’ Union Acting Chairman: Six Russian Journalists Were Killed in ATO Period
- December 15 – According to the UNN and as Mr. Serhiy Tomilenko, Acting Chairman of the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine informed during the briefing, since the beginning of the military operations in Eastern Ukraine, six Russian media journalists were killed. According to Mr. Tomilenko, the death of one Ukrainian journalist, Mr. Vyacheslav Veremiya, the Vesti newspaper journalist, was registered after Maidan: he was killed in Kyiv by ‘titushkas’. Mr. Tomilenko said that “at the same time, six journalists who worked for the Russian media were killed. Accordingly, Russia said that the Ukrainian government provided an accurate fire towards Russian journalists and they cannot work in Ukraine. The NUJU considers the leadership of the Russian media guilty of the death of Russian colleagues. When we consider any case, every journalist and every (Russian) cameraperson actually ignored all instructions and rules on safety issued by the International Federation of Journalists. They accompanied terrorists, and they were shooting when the terrorists provided an accurate fire towards the Ukrainian side. It is clear that a counterfire is directed not towards that journalists but rather towards military forces”, http://imi.org.ua/news/46926-za-chas-ato-na-donbasi-zaginulo-shestero-rosiyskih-jurnalistiv-nsju.html
Media Organizations of Ukraine and Russia Urge Colleagues Not to Participate in Information War
- December 15 –During a meeting under the auspices of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Ms. Dunja Mijatovic that was held in Vienna, representatives of media organizations of Ukraine and Russia agreed to mutually work and monitor violations of journalists' rights and pursue the investigation of all cases of violence and violation of the journalists’ rights. In addition, media persons urged colleagues neither to participate in the information war nor to incite hatred, but exercise journalistic solidarity instead. The meeting was attended by the First Secretary of the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine, Mr. Serhiy Tomilenko, Head of the Kyiv NUJU Regional Organization, Mr. Mykhailo Soroka, Chairman of the Journalistic Ethics Commission, Mr. Volodymyr Mostovyi, a columnist of the Telekritika, Ms. Svitlana Ostapa, Chairman of the Independent Media Trade Union of Ukraine, Mr. Yuriy Lukanov, and IMTUU lawyer, Mr. Oleksandr Tarasov; the Union of Journalists of Russia was represented by UJR Secretary, and EJF Vice-President, Ms. Nadiya Azhgikhina, Co-Chairman of the Russian Public Collegium for Press Complaints, Mr. Yuri Kazakov, and such URJ representatives as Mr. Ashot Dzhazoyan, Mr. Givi Tsatsua, and Mr. Borys Tymoshenko. That was the 4th meeting conducted under the auspices of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, http://nsju.org/index.php/article/4572
Fake Website of Independent Media Trade Union
- December 12 – According to the press-service of the Independent Media Trade Union Ukraine (IMTUU), unidentified persons created the fake web-site of Kyiv Independent Media Trade Union (KIMTU) at knmpu.org, which in terms of its design and content is a copy of the IMTUU official web-site (nmpu.org.ua). Kyiv TU organization and other TU regional organizations have no individual web-sites so far. As all official IMTUU information is publicly and exclusively released via nmpu.org.ua site, “Trade Union News” block, the IMTUU considers knmpu.org as a fake site. The fake site was registered to the name of the Head of IMTUU, Mr. Yuriy Lukanov, who was surprised while finding himself among the resource owners’ data. Despite reports of fraud, the domain name registrar, nic.ua, has refused to shut the web-site down and advised to address the court. Mr. Yuriy Lukanov considers that the fake web-site may be used in the information war against Ukraine, http://www.telekritika.ua/profesija/2014-12-12/101528
EU Encourages Ministry of Information to Protect Media Freedom and Produce High Quality Product for Abroad
- December 15 – According to the head of the Press and Information section of the EU Delegation to Ukraine Yurhys Vilchynskas, the European Union has doubts about the necessity of creation of the Ministry of Information Policy in Ukraine, reported RBC-Ukraine. "It is too early for the EU to assess the Ministry of Information Policy. It should study the Statute, other documentation, as well as assignments of the new Ministry first. If this Ministry helps ensure further development of the media market, guarantee fair market competition, it can be used as a tool. But the question is how much this Ministry will cost the Budget? Is this institution effective at all?"- said Vilchynskas. “Political and economic reforms in Ukraine are impossible without freedom of expression, pluralism, open dialogue between the government and society. Media freedom plays a major role in this process. The EU has invested millions of euro to reform media sector and elaborate European standards. Naturally, it will take time to implement these standards in Ukraine. The EU urges Ukraine to move to the public service broadcasting. It provides technical and financial assistance to create a public regulator which would help produce such a media product that would work not only for itself, but would also be heard by people outside Ukraine"- Vilchynskas added, http://www.rbc.ua/ukr/news/politics/v-es-somnevayutsya-v-tselesoobraznosti-sozdaniya-mininformpolitiki-15122014141300.
Online Broadcasts of Parliamentary Committees’ Meetings
- December 15 – The Parliamentary Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information prepared a draft resolution on the Parliamentary committees’ meetings to be broadcast online. According to Victoria Syumar, the Chair of the Committee, the Parliamentary apparatus is now learning the technical capacity to ensure the online broadcasts. Ms. Syumar highlighted, “The Committees’ activities are as important as the Parliament’s plenary sessions. The Committees review draft laws and listen to Ministers who are invited. Therefore, open and transparent work of the committees is necessary.” Ms. Syumar also underlined the necessity to publish online the Committees’ meetings transcripts. Later, the Cabinet of Ministers and central executive agencies can join the initiative. Such openness will build trust to official institutions, http://www.telekritika.ua/pravo/2014-12-15/101574.
Amendments to Law On Public Broadcasting Registered at Parliament
- December 10 – A draft Law On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of Ukraine on Public Television and Radio Broadcasting of Ukraine was registered at the Parliament by Victoria Syumar, the Chair of the Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information. The purpose of the bill is the legal support of the National Public Broadcasting Company of Ukraine (NPBCU), the creation of which is provided by the Law "On Public Service Broadcasting in Ukraine" (adopted in April 2014). The bill clarifies certain provisions of the Law regarding: NPBCU creation mechanism and its legal form; funding sources; labor remuneration; protection of property rights and interests of NPBCU employees; improving functions of the Supervisory Board; formation and the work principles of the supervisory and editorial boards. The draft Law envisions the possibility to fund public broadcasting through monthly fees, allowed more adverting slots that will be decreased on the 5th year of broadcasting. Media Law Institute (MLI) actively participated in the developing of the mentioned draft Law, http://medialaw.kiev.ua/news/media/2816/.
U-MEDIA PARTNERS’ ACTIVITIES
Pylyp Orlyk Institute for Democracy: Regional Media Lacks Social Responsibility
- December 15 – Executive Director of the Pylyp Orlyk Institute for Democracy (POID) Ms. Svitlana Yeremenko published her overview of the quality of regional journalism over the last three years. Her notes touched the enormous volume of jeansa in the election period (40% in average) that proved no desire to change from the side of regional print and online outlets despite the dignity revolution in Ukrainian society. However, the volume of jeansa was much less in the regions that have been under monitoring since 2012 (Lviv, Sumy, Kharkiv) in comparison to new regions that POID added to the monitoring in September 2014 (Dnipropetrovsk, Zhytomyr, Chernivtsi, Odesa). At the beginning of 2014, many regional outlets in the East of Ukraine launched pro-Russian and anti-Euro-Maidan propaganda that created threats to Ukraine’s integrity; only Donetsk online media “Novosti Donbassa” and “Ura Inform” continued providing objective news. The number of jeansa publications in other regions also dropped at the beginning of 2014. The author connected the decrease with no pressure of local authorities in the transition period after the Euro-Maidan protests. Thus, the author makes a conclusion about the absence of civilized media market in Ukraine and the low level of social responsibility among the majority of regional journalists due to the character of jeansa in the election period, journalists’ reckless “ministration” to their owners–oligarchs, http://osvita.mediasapiens.ua/monitoring/regional_newspapers/tendentsii_v_regionalnikh_media_2014.
- December 11, Lutsk – Pylyp Orlyk Institute for Democracy (POID) conducted a regional roundtable in Lutsk to discuss the issue of regional media content. Svitlana Yeremenko, POID Executive director and media expert shared findings from monitoring of the regional print and online media within the elections period and engaged local journalists into the discussion about their vision of media’s responsibility, http://on.fb.me/13u8qWF.
- December 11, Lutsk – Svitlana Yeremenko, the Pylyp Orlyk Institute for Democracy (POID) Executive Director, and Oleh Pokalchuk, a journalist and writer met with Lutsk students of philological and journalism departments. The speakers discussed the responsibility of journalists in terms of the undeclared war and the informational aggression. Ms. Yeremenko underlined such negative aspects in Ukrainian media as a big per cent of jeansa materials, low quality of materials and noncompliance with the journalism standards. The media expert urged students to read and write a lot, learn foreign languages, like the profession of journalists and be responsible for the information they present, http://bit.ly/1AnlAiF.
- December 15-17, Kyiv - Regional Press Development Institute (RPDI) delivered a 3-day workshop “Effective tools for access to information and defense of journalists’ rights” for a group of 20 journalists.
IMI Introduces Monitoring Results
- December 16 – Institute of Mass Information (IMI) presented monitoring results of six popular national online media (“Liga”, “Obozrevatel" (Observer), UNIAN, LB.ua, Ukrainian Truth, and Ukrinform) to observe the level of professional standards and count biased publications (hidden advertisements). According to the experts 58% of materials are not full and 29% are unbalanced. The best scores received Liga and Ukrainian Truth, i.e. 4.95 out of 6. The lowest scores received “Obozrevatel" (Observer) – 4.29 due to a big number of jeansa materials that violate journalism standards, http://bit.ly/1zvEELZ.
- December 19 - NGO “Telekritika” will conduct a round table “Professional Journalism Standards on Regional TV under Crisis and War Conditions” in Odesa. The TK experts will present findings of the regional TV monitoring to discuss professional and ethical journalism standards in the conditions of crisis and military conflict in the East of Ukraine. The roundtable aims at raising the regional media content quality through the self-regulation mechanisms and journalists’ responsibility in the society.
- December 22 – Institute of Mass Information (IMI) will organize an annual press conference on freedom of speech state in Ukraine in 2014. The press conference will provide findings of IMI monitoring of violations of journalists rights, provide particular cases of violations, and will discuss issues of Ukrainian journalism in the upcoming year. The time and place will be published at IMI Facebook page.
- December 22 – Media Law Institute in cooperation with the Committee of Voters and Civic Network OPORA will organize an expert discussion on regulations of informational flow from candidates during the election campaigns. The changes to be proposed will regulate the format for debates, political advertisement, and cancellation/limitation of pre-election agitation. The meeting will coordinate efforts of leading NGOs in developing election legislation before the local elections to be held in 2015. The event will be held at Hotel “Khreshatyk” (Khreshatyk Str., 14) from 10.00 a.m. to 1 p.m., http://www.medialaw.kiev.ua/news/organization/2819/.
- December 22 – Institute for World policy (IWP) will organize a seminar on European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine. The experts and participants will discuss the challenges of democratic reforms in Ukraine, the benefits and challenges of European integration and coverage of these processes in the media. After the seminar the journalists will have a chance to discuss the issues of security with V.Ogryzko Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (2007-2009) and Roman Vaschuk Canada Ambassador in Ukraine. The event will take place at IWP office (Institutska str. 20/8) at 4 p.m., http://iwp.org.ua/ukr/.