Measuring Democracy – Reports by the Committee to Protect Journalists

The Committee to Protect Journalists is a non-profit organization established with the aim to protect the press freedom around the world. There is not much information available on who the members of organization are and whether it has regional affiliates apart from its central office in New York. The organization publishes annual reports that are dealing with the issues of media freedom mainly, and on margins with issues of media standards and professionalism. Like the International Press Institute reports, the reports of CPJ are not prepared according to standardized methodology, there is no topic list according to which reports are made, and the reports are not meant to compare countries with their past or with other countries. The reports are descriptive and concentrate mainly on the problems that are identified in the relevant country. A total of 141 countries are covered by the report. The criteria according to which these countries are included are not mentioned in the report, but from the list it is visible that most developed countries are not present. The report does not indicate the source of information on which the report is based, and as far as it can be seen from the report itself, both country and regional reports are compiled by teams that are dealing with one region only. The reports for 2000 and 2001 are available on the CPJ’s web site.

In terms of content, the reports are focusing on media freedom with reference to a large number of issues. They focus on the legal framework of media activities describe legal restrictions with which media are faced, especially in the area of anti defamation laws, laws that are limiting the publishing of information from certain areas, and laws that are limiting the access to information. They also provide information about governmental interference into the editorial policy of media and in selection of top editorial personnel. Report registers other types of pressures by governmental institutions as well. Other types of pressures include financial pressures and various legal actions directed to limiting the capacity of independent media to publish some types of information. The information on violence and harassment against journalists committed by governmental agencies are also reported, as well as the data about the detentions and trials of journalists. Other types of violence and harassment not committed by state institutions are also reported.

The reports give very precise data about censorship and banning of media and detentions and trials against journalist and some cases are presented with very detailed accounts. The structure of reports varies between countries depending on the type, frequency and magnitude of the problem, but there is no large difference in the level of details presented from case to case.

The CPJ web site has regular and frequents updates of records of events that are linked with the restriction of media freedom for countries included in report, these updates are about individual events from individual countries.
The countries included into report are grouped into five regional groups and the country report for each country in the groups are compiled by the same team.

The countries and regions are:
In the Americas: Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Trinidad & Tobago, Uruguay, USA, Venezuela.

In Asia: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burma (Myanmar), Brunei, Cambodia, China, East Timor, Fiji, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, North Korea, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam.

In Europe and Central Asia: Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgystan, Macedonia, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, UK, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Yugoslavia.

In Middle East and North Africa: Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mauritania, Morocco, Palestinian Authority, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Yemen.

In Africa: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, D. R. of Congo, Rep. of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
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Coffee Processes in Papua New Guinea

Here we have stitched together some video clips from my last trip to PNG. I added a voiceover to explain some of the visuals. It’s no masterpiece, but a good glimpse into the coffee work seen in Papua New Guinea.

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