The Torch

The Torch

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How U.S. copyright law is used to censor journalism globally

In a case with disturbing implications for press freedom globally, CPJ’s Senior Africa Researcher Jonathan Rozen’s latest investigation found that web hosting services received emails falsely claiming to be from journalists citing U.S. copyright law, in what appeared to be a move to force news websites to remove a report on Kenya’s gambling industry. The…

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Bangladesh court hands down convictions in 2015 murders of blogger and publisher

In Bangladesh, a court sentenced five people to death for their involvement in the 2015 murder of blogger Avijit Roy, and another to life in prison. The court handed down death sentences to members of the same group for the 2015 murder of Roy’s publisher, Faisal Arefin Dipan. CPJ’s senior Asia researcher, Aliya Iftikhar, welcomed…

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Journalists in Myanmar fear imminent press crackdown

In Myanmar, reporters fear a more targeted media clampdown is imminent, Aung Zaw, founder and editor-in-chief of the staunchly independent The Irrawaddy and a 2014  recipient of CPJ’s International Press Freedom Award, told CPJ. Since the coup earlier this month, police have shot a journalist with a rubber bullet at a protest and the military…

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Access to social media, TV restricted in Myanmar as democracy is upended

Myanmar’s military seized power from the elected government February 1, obstructing news stations, temporarily shuttering phone and internet access, and later restricting access to social media platforms. “Social media and communication platforms are crucial for journalists to report the news as democracy is upended,” said Shawn Crispin, CPJ’s senior Southeast Asia representative, urging officials to…

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Russian police crack down on journalists covering pro-Navalny protests

Russian law enforcement has detained, beat, and interfered with the work of dozens of journalists covering protests in support of opposition leader and anti-corruption blogger Alexei Navalny, assaulting at least eight and detaining at least 49. Ahead of expected demonstrations on Saturday, police continue trying to intimidate independent journalists covering the demonstrations. CPJ urges Russian…

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Ten years after Arab Spring, journalism more dangerous and deadly in region

Ten years after the Arab Spring, journalists in the Middle East and North Africa confront grave threats while trying to report the news. The historic upheaval has had profound and wide-ranging consequences for press freedom, as authorities and non-state actors use both novel and traditional means to suppress reporting and target individual journalists—including imprisonment, online…

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Ahead of US presidential inauguration, CPJ publishes safety advisory

CPJ issued an extensive safety advisory for covering the U.S. presidential inauguration and its lead-up, following the violent takeover of the U.S. Capitol last week. CPJ recommends that journalists be prepared for potential hostility and violence from militia groups, protesters, and the police. CPJ called for accountability for attacks on the media during the Capitol…

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Amid violence in Washington, D.C., journalist safety must be respected

Following yesterday’s disturbing displays of violence in Washington, D.C., which put journalists and lawmakers alike at serious risk, CPJ remains concerned for the safety of reporters covering civil unrest and political events. Amid the chaos, reported threats against the press yesterday included intimidation of news crews and destruction of equipment. “Journalists and news crews covering…

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A year like no other: The state of press freedom in 2020

What a year! Over the past 12 months, journalists worldwide faced the risk of COVID-19 exposure while reporting on the frontlines of the pandemic, and bore the brunt of virus-related crackdowns and censorship. Journalists mobilized to cover consequential elections, and a wave of protests and unrest around the world from Minsk to Minneapolis. Authorities surveilled…

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Journalist murders double in 2020; Criminal and extremist groups target reporters in democracies

The number of journalists murdered in retaliation for their work more than doubled in 2020 as criminal gangs and militant groups targeted reporters working in violent but democratic nations. Globally, at least 30 journalists were killed of December 15, 2020. Of those, 21 were murdered in direct retaliation for their work, compared with 10 in…

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