Media Freedom: Journalists in times of crisis
War, terrorism, threats to stability
and natural disasters lead to greater security and surveillance measures
worldwide. How is this affecting how journalists access information and report?
Join our new
Freedom of expression and information is essential at any time
in a democratic society but it becomes all the more important in
times of crisis.
We invite you – mainly journalists but also anyone concerned
about freedom of expression – to contribute, through our new
discussion forum, to our daily effort to guarantee this
Please share with us, your colleagues and a wider audience
your experiences, concerns and views on the rights and
responsibilities of journalists in times of crisis. Here are
some of the questions that, in our view, merit special
During crises, authorities sometimes limit the free movement of media professionals or access to information
by arguing for the need to guarantee their safety. To what extent is this justified?
What is your experience?
The right of journalists not to disclose their sources of
information is essential if media are to exercise
their role as public watchdog.
are your experiences
and views on the protection of sources and on its limits?
In recent months the re-publication of
Prophet Mohammed cartoons and a film by Dutch politician Geert
Wilders have re-ignited an intense debate on freedom
of expression. Should the publication of content that
people of any religion may find offensive be
restricted or sanctioned?
are your personal
experiences and views on the handling of such sensitive issues?
Address any of these topics or propose a new relevant one for
discussion, share your problems or your positive
experiences. Whatever choice you make, your contribution
will be highly appreciated. For our part, we shall do our
best to react to your concerns.
Concerned by the erosion of
press freedom in crisis situations, the Council of Europe
has adopted three documents particularly relevant to this
Declaration on freedom of expression and
information in the media in the context of the fight against
Guidelines on protection freedom of expression
and information in times of crisis and a
Declaration on the
protection and promotion of investigative journalism. They
are based on Article 10 of the
European Convention on Human
Rights which aims to guarantee freedom of expression and
information within the jurisdiction of the 47 Council of
Europe member states.