Annual Press Freedom Awards honorees

Honoring journalistic courage

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The Committee to Protect Journalists will honor journalists from Brazil, India, Nicaragua and Tanzania with the 2019 International Press Freedom Awards, amid the erosion of press freedom in democracies around the globe. All of the winners will be honored at CPJ’s annual awards and benefit dinner. This year’s dinner will be chaired by Laurene Powell Jobs and Peter Lattman of the Emerson Collective. The videos for the awards will be produced by VICE Media. The event will take place in New York City on 21 November 2019.

CPJ’s 2019 International Press Freedom Awards’ honorees include Tanzanian Maxence Melo Mubyazi, champion of online freedom of expression in Tanzania. Mubyazi co-founded and is the managing director of Jamii Forums, an online discussion site and source of breaking news. He has been charged under the country’s restrictive CyberCrimes Act and, in 2017, appeared in court 81 times.

Including Mubyazi, the nominees come from around the globe like Patrícia Campos Mello, a reporter and columnist at Brazil’s daily, Folha de S. Paulo. During the Brazilian presidential election campaign in 2018, Mello was attacked online and doxxed in response to her coverage of supporters of then presidential-candidate Jair Bolsonaro allegedly sponsoring bulk messaging in WhatsApp.

Neha Dixit, a freelance investigative journalist in India who covers human rights, has faced legal and physical threats, as well as online harassment, after reporting on alleged wrongdoing by right-wing nationalist groups and police.

Lucía Pineda Ubau, news director, and Miguel Mora, founder and editor, of Nicaraguan broadcaster 100% Noticias were imprisoned in December 2018 in relation to their coverage of political unrest. They were freed on 11 June 2019, after six months behind bars, under surveillance and in isolation most of the time.

The 2019 IPFA honorees

“The winners of CPJ’s 2019 International Press Freedom Awards represent the very best of journalism, people who have put their lives and liberty on the line to bring us the news. While we celebrate their courage, we lament that it is required. The sad reality is that around the world independent journalism is threatened by populist authoritarians who disdain and disparage the work of the independent press. This is true in the countries represented by our honorees and many others,” said Joel Simon, CPJ’s executive director.

CPJ’s 2019 Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award recognizing extraordinary and sustained achievement in the cause of press freedom will be presented to Zaffar Abbas, editor of Pakistan’s daily newspaper Dawn. Abbas, who has decades of experience as a reporter in Pakistan, has led Dawn since 2010. Under his leadership, Dawn and its reporters have frequently come under government pressure.

“Zaffar Abbas is the embodiment of journalistic courage, which is why the board is so pleased to honor him with the Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award. Every day he fights to deliver facts to Dawn‘s readers in the face of pressure, obstacles, and blockades from the institutions in Pakistan that would much prefer to go about their business without scrutiny from the press or the public,” said Kathleen Carroll, chair of the CPJ board.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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