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Focus: The media and development Blogging for change Most people in the Palestinian Territories are young, and they use the internet to stay informed. Blogs matter a lot, and web-based citizen journalism is an important part of life under Israeli occupation, reports Mona ­Naggar, a journalist and media trainer. Page 12 Staying sane The physical and mental health of journalists is at risk in crisis situations. The psychological impact on reporters tends to be underestimated. The Dart Center for Jour­ nalism and Trauma helps media workers to cope with trauma and offers trainings on how to work in dangerous settings, as Petra Tabeling, the coordinator of the Dart Center in Germany, elaborates. Page 15 Village voices In Bolivia’s mountain villages, radio stations inform people about what is happening in the world. The gov- ernment is acting in support of community radios. Linda Vierecke assesses to what extent these stations can really operate independently. Page 18 Teaching indigenous reporters Bolivia’s indigenous people are increasingly active in radio broadcasting. Many contributors lack professional skills, regrets Juan Ordoñez Caetano. He works for CEPRA, a radio centre in Cochabamba, and is contributing to improving matters. Page 20 Virtual continuity The training programmes international donors run in support of journalists in developing countries tend to be too short to turn new insights and skills into daily routines. Training providers should rely on e-learning ­methods to extend their seminars, suggests Werner Eggert, a media trainer. Page 22 Inspiring public debate Development agencies must promote independent media and the freedom of expression. They are no longer focusing merely on training journalists, but taking new approaches and reaching out to more constituents. Alexander Matschke of DW Akademie gives an overview. Page 26 How D+C/E+Z is adapting to the internet age D+C/E+Z has reinvented itself, and 2015 will be the year of massive change. Editor-in-chief Hans Dembowski spells out our new cross-media approach. Page 30 Editorial Tough times In dictatorships, the press is silenced – but in many democratic coun- tries, politicians do not welcome criticism either. Journalists are seen as a nuisance, even though their work is essential for democracy. Unfortunately, murders and unacceptable threats occur again and again. There can be no real democracy without a vibrant press. It is easier to agree with this statement, though, than to create a lively, pluralistic media scene. In many developing countries, governments talk of good governance and more social justice. At the same time, however, many of them hardly accept free media, and they certainly do not support independent journalism. Free media demand that policymakers act in an accountable and transparent fashion. They express grievances and kick-start public debates. On the inter- net, blogs similarly discuss topics that matter to society. Those in positions of power are often not pleased, nor are local mafias. Therefore, media workers are at risk in many countries. Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Hu- man Rights states: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expres- sion; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and re- gardless of frontiers.” Too many people, however, do not know their rights. Citizens all over the world must be put in a position to enjoy the freedom of opinion and expression. The media must contribute to development and benefit from it. In western democracies today, journalism is also under pressure. Though me- dia houses decide freely what they publish, their revenues have gone down dramatically – and as a consequence, the working conditions of journalists are deteriorating. The audience has become unwilling to pay for well-researched content, and that applies to the press as well as to the internet. The result is an ongoing erosion of quality journalism. Entertainment channels dominate ra- dio and television, and the press is narrowing down its range. What that means for democracy in the western world remains to be seen. One can get information free of cost on the internet, of course, but users need to be able to tell credible information from mere propaganda. Whether in rich or poor countries, media literacy matters, and should be taught in schools. People everywhere in the world must know how to tell professional jour­ nalism, which is diligent about indicating sources and distinguishing facts from opinion for instance, from incompetent coverage. They must also under- stand that professional journalism cannot be delivered free of charge for ever. It bodes nothing good if the media – for lack of money or under pressure from terrorist groups and authoritarian governments – cannot serve its function as the Fourth Estate. Media outlets must monitor political and economic af- fairs, inform the people and start public debates. Otherwise, there can be no meaningful public participation in public matters. ********** D+C/E+Z has reinvented itself to adapt to the internet era. We will be pub- lishing more content online, but reduce the number of print issues. Taxpayer money that has been spent on postage, printing and paper so far will in ­future be invested in the editorial team, enabling us to produce more con- tent. Our mission remains the same: to create a credible, international forum for debate. We are pleased to be fulfill- ing it more effectively and efficiently from now on (see essay by Hans Dem- bowski on p. 30 f.). Front page: Zambian TV reporter Photographer: Jörg Böthling/Photography 2 D+C Vol.42.2015:1 Sheila Mysorekar is a member of D+C/E+Z’s editorial team. [email protected]