The media is an essential part of our democratic society, a link between governments and those they govern. The media allows us to evaluate, from a number of different perspectives, the institutions and corporations that make up our societies.
Freedom of the media is not a given. Over the last ten years, 1,100 journalists and media staff have been killed in the line of duty, according to the International News Safety Institute. In certain countries, governments still attempt to control the media. The concentration process that allows holding companies to control several media outlets reduces the diversity of information sources. On the other hand, the rise of the internet as a new medium has pushed back the boundaries what can and cannot be said and published.
In 1950, freedom of expression was enshrined in article 10 of the European Convention of Human Rights. Since then, the Council of Europe has adopted a number of conventions and standards dealing with media freedom, copyright issues, access to official documents or communication on the internet. Without the right to freedom of expression, the media would be powerless in its function.
We want you to show us the importance of freedom to your profession. Using photo, radio, video or text, show us your interpretation of Article 10, which states:
“Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers…”
Your entries should illustrate positive and/or negative aspects of media freedom in 21st century Europe. The Award is open from 7 March until 1 August 2011. The winners will be announced shortly after the end of the competiton, and the winners will receive their prize in Strasbourg during the October 2011 session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.
To upload your entry, visit the dedicated Youthmedia.eu Award page.