March 25, 2009

PRESS RELEASES: Young Reader Prize Adds Press Freedom Category

Paris, 24 March 2009 - For immediate release

Young Reader Prize Adds Press Freedom Category

The World Young Reader Prize, an annual award from the World Association of Newspapers to recognise newspapers that do the most to develop young readership, has added a press free
dom category to honour newspapers that teach effectively about the fragility and importance of press freedom in a democratic society.

The deadline for the press f
reedom award is 15 April. The award will be announced on 3 May, World Press Freedom Day and presented at the 8th World Young Reader Conference, to be held on 27 to 30 September in Prague.

Judges for the special press freedom category will be WAN Golden Pe
n laureates Doan Viet Hoat (Vietnam) and Pius Njawe (Cameroon) and Nayla Tueni, daughter of assassinated Lebanese publisher Gebran Tueni.

In addition to the new Press Freedom category, WAN has created a new “Making the News” category that honours innovative projects that allow young people to try their hand as journalists. Other categories are Editorial, Brand, Public Service and Newspapers in Education. Deadline for all but the press freedom category is 5 June.

The World Young Reader Prizes are awarded annually to innovative newspapers that have devised, in the judges' opinion, the best project or activity in the past 24 months in one or more of the main areas of young reader development. "Young reader" refers to those under age 25.

The prize is sponsored by the paper manufacturer Norske Skog as part of its support for WAN’s young readership development activities.

Full details about the prize can be found at

WAN is also reinforcing other initiatives that engage young people in the defence of press freedom and that encourage teachers to make sure that young people understand the importance of, and threats to, press freedom.

These include:

- Creation of a Facebook group called, “Show Your Face to Free Shi Tao,” where Facebook users are encouraged to download posters of the jailed Chinese journalist and upload photos of themselves posing with it and their local newspaper. Information about the group can be found at

- Creating new exercises and materials on press freedom themes for parents and teachers targeting 12- to 16-year olds, with the help of Newspapers in Education experts from Argentina, Belgium, Palestine and Denmark. The exercises incorporate WAN’s 2007-2008 press freedom films, available on YouTube.

The Paris-based WAN, the global organisation for the newspaper industry, defends and promotes press freedom and the professional and business interests of newspapers world-wide. Representing 18,000 newspapers, its membership includes 77 national newspaper associations, newspaper companies and individual newspaper executives in 102 countries, 12 news agencies and 11 regional and world-wide press groups.

Inquiries to:
Larry Kilman, Director of Communications and Public Affairs,
WAN, 7 rue Geoffroy St Hilaire, 75005 Paris France. Tel: +33 1 47 42 85 00.
Fax: +33 1 47 42 49 48. Mobile: +33 6 10 28 97 36.

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