[From the web] Excess of freedom, impunity; Deficit of ethics, self-criticism « Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism

Excess of freedom, impunity; Deficit of ethics, self-criticism « Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism.

by Malou Mangahas
December 12th, 2011, http://www.pcij.org

  THE PHILIPPINE media community, one of the freest and most rambunctious in all of Asia, is an incredible, hopefully not incorrigible, story of dissonant currents and practices.

For instance, while press freedom has broad and firm guarantees in law and jurisprudence in this country, the Philippines remains one of the deadliest places in the world for journalists, even as the executive and legislative branches have been slow to move on strategic reforms, including the Freedom of Information Act.

Reporters and editors also zealously guard and assert their freedom and resist all attempts by state authorities to restrict their trade, and yet self-regulation by professional and industry associations has always lacked vigor and constancy. Indeed, self-criticism of media by media remains scant and thus ineffectual, even as competition for sales, revenues, and audience share drives most editorial decisions of most gatekeepers.

Moreover, as much as journalists assert their independence from state authorities, and insist on the strict observance of the laws by political leaders, media managers have tended to ignore and neglect concerns of media rank and file about economic benefits, safety provisions for those assigned dangerous areas, and security of tenure for correspondents and stringers in the provinces.

Read full article @ pcij.org

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