Press freedom-A A +A
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
MEMBERS of Cebu’s very independent media are again celebrating Cebu Press Freedom Week from September 15 to 21.
Is there a need to celebrate press freedom?
Those who are not familiar with how the media keep all our freedoms intact see none.
Wait until it’s gone.
Journalism students tell you it’s no longer news if a dog bites a man. What’s news is when a man bites a dog.
In a dog-eat-dog world, where’s the man?
Fortunately, the media, that is, the newspapers, radio and television, are still there to tell you what happens blow-by-blow.
In the case of demolitions of houses of informal settlers, it’s hammer-by-hammer
A question has been asked whether there is a freedom of the press against media owners and managers.
Media practitioners already know that press freedom belong to those who own one.
But that will not stop a media practitioner from moving to another media organization where his voice will not be scuttled or his column purged.
Will freedom of the press die with the death of a column or the expulsion of a journalist?
Gawad Plaridel awardee and veteran journalist Pachico Seares, in an article on CJJ (Cebu Journalism and Journalists) 8 2013 has this to say:
“In a way it does. Theoretically, freedom is diminished but it doesn’t eliminate dissent or shut down a media forum. In the hectic competition on multiple platforms of the local press, view or information cannot be suppressed.”
There has been the apprehension that press freedom applies only to external threats, most especially from a repressive government as what the grizzled journalist Juan Mercado has experienced during Martial Law.
But will the death of a column kill press feedom? Seares has the answer.
“It’s not like putting out the fire or silencing the orchestra: darkness or silence won’t descend. Light and voices from other media will compensate.”
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 18, 2013.