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Free Press and four allies have filed a lawsuit (27 August 2020) challenging an order against social media companies. The US District Court, Northern District of California, will hear a complaint against President Trump’s “Executive Order on Preventing Online Censorship”, which targets online platforms with a range of official reprisals – including threats to their established legal immunity, investigation by government enforcement agencies, and the loss of significant government spending – for engaging in constitutionally protected speech, including combating misinformation online.

How can news organizations practice diversity and how can newsmakers contribute to overcoming division and exclusion? A digital panel session discussed these questions as part of German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle’s Global Media Forum 2020. It focused on the need for news organizations to promote diversity...

Media freedom is the freedom to protest. “Hong Kong has long been respected as a powerful global economic hub and lively political and democratic space, supported by a proud and strong independent media. Yet the imposition of the new national security law… has undermined fundamental rights and freedom of expression… and severely damages Hong Kong’s autonomy,” says a statement published by the International Federation of Journalists on 19 August 2020. It was signed by eight leading organisations supporting media freedom.

A new law in Tanzania tightens controls on cooperation between local and international media outlets. Under new regulations announced by the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority, which came into force on 10 August 2020, local media must now seek government permission to broadcast foreign content. They will be responsible for any perceived “offence” contained in that content.

There is nothing new about hate speech. What has changed is the mode of delivery. In Nazi Germany, it was state-controlled newspapers and radio. At the time of the genocide in Rwanda, it was a radio station run by the Hutu government. Today, it is social media, until recently largely unregulated.

No apologies for quoting at length from “The Media Isn’t Ready to Cover Climate Apartheid” by Michelle García (The Nation, 17 June 2020). While praising the public service ethic of many media outlets, whose coverage of the Covid-19 pandemic has been exemplary, she notes an apparent reticence or inability to delve in depth into its impact on the most marginalized. She also questions media preparedness for the greater crisis to follow: