CPJ board chair Jacob Weisberg at the Nasdaq MarketSite in Times Square, in New York City, to mark World Press Freedom Day on May 3, 2024. (Photo: Nasdaq, Inc./Vanja Savic)

CPJ rings opening bell at Nasdaq in recognition of World Press Freedom Day

New York, May 3, 2024 — The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) was joined by press freedom supporters to ring the opening bell Friday at the Nasdaq MarketSite in Times Square in commemoration of World Press Freedom Day.

The bell ringing ceremony was led by Kristina Ayanian, host at Nasdaq Listings.

Ahead of the bell ringing, Jacob Weisberg, CPJ’s board chair, spoke about the importance of the press to democracy. Weisberg was joined by CPJ board member Diane Brayton, as well as CPJ staff members and supporters. 

Weisberg’s remarks are included here:

Thank you very much, Kristina, and thank you to Nasdaq for once again, marking World Press Freedom Day. 

This year, more than half the world’s population will go to the polls in one of the world’s largest democratic exercises ever taken. Elections are a time of reform, of ideas, of promises, and the potential for change.

For those elections to be free and fair, we need trustworthy information. For trustworthy information, we need and we rely on journalists.

This World Press Freedom Day we honor the journalists who bring us that information. We honor the journalists who help hold power to account through their reporting on candidates’ policies and their track record in government. We honor the reporters who expose the undue influence of money and power in politics. We honor journalists reporting from rallies, protests, and polling stations, helping us to understand the issues at stake. 

Those who play this vital role are under threat like never before. In the United States, more than half of local election officials fear for their safety and that of their colleagues. Journalists are right there, too, directly reporting on what happens at polling stations and shedding light on contested results. 

Since 1992, CPJ research shows that 527 journalists reporting on politics have been murdered for their work. During the same period, more than 1,500 journalists around the world whose coverage included politics, have been wrongly imprisoned. 

So far this year, journalists have been assaulted, shot at, and prevented from reporting in at least three elections globally. Here in the U.S., a journalist was arrested while legitimately covering a political protest. Smears and public threats against journalists — including from politicians — are mounting. 

A free and independent press is essential for democracy. It is essential for our economies. It is essential for all our freedoms. Let us protect it together.


The Committee to Protect Journalists is an independent, nonprofit organization that promotes press freedom worldwide.

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