Many Overseas Journalists Enjoy More Press Freedoms

By Swaffield, Bruce C. | The Quill, December 1, 2005 | Go to article overview

Many Overseas Journalists Enjoy More Press Freedoms


Swaffield, Bruce C., The Quill


Despite what most people think, journalists in the United States do not have the highest level of media freedom in the world.

The best countries for working journalists are Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Ireland, Netherlands, Norway and Switzerland.

The worst places, the "black holes" where freedom of the press is the most restrictive, are North Korea, Eritrea, Turkmenistan, Iran, Burma, Libya and Cuba.

These recent conclusions are from the fourth annual World Press Freedom Index, conducted by Reporters Without Borders (RSF). The international watchdog agency based its rankings of 167 countries on 50 questions that were sent to 14 freedom of expression groups worldwide as well as to journalists, researchers, jurists and human rights activists throughout the globe.

Examining the frequency and severity of actual violations involving journalists in each country for a one-year period (beginning Sept. 1, 2004), respondents rated the level of freedom enjoyed by members of the press in each nation.

According to RSF, the questionnaire measured "every kind of violation directly affecting journalists (such as murders, imprisonment, physical attacks and threats) and news media (censorship, confiscation of issues, searches and harassment).

"It (the Freedom Index) registers the degree of impunity enjoyed by those responsible for such violations. It also takes account of the legal situation affecting the news media (such as penalties for press offenses, the existence of a state monopoly in certain areas and the existence of a regulatory body) and the behavior of the authorities towards the state-owned news media and the foreign press."

So what about freedom of the press in the United States? The Freedom Index ranks the U.S. at 44, far below Slovakia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Namibia, El Salvador, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

"The United States... fell more than 20 places," says RSF, "mainly because of the imprisonment of New York Times reporter Judith Miller and legal moves undermining the privacy of journalistic sources. Canada (21st) also dropped several places due to decisions that weakened the privacy of sources and sometimes turned journalists into 'court auxiliaries.' France (30th) also slipped, largely because of searches of media offices, interrogations of journalists and introduction of new press offenses."

One surprising conclusion of the 2005 Freedom Index is that people in poorer countries do, in fact, share many of the same freedoms as those living in richer nations.

"The Index also contradicts the frequent argument by leaders of poor and repressive countries that economic development is a vital precondition for democracy and respect for human rights," explains RSF. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Many Overseas Journalists Enjoy More Press Freedoms
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.