World Press Freedom Day has been observed all over the world on the 3rd of May.
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World Press Freedom Day theme of the year 2021 is “Information as a Public Good”. It serves as a call to affirm the importance of cherishing information as a public good.
In a message, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres requested all governments to do everything in their power to support a free, independent and diverse media.
He mentioned in many countries, journalists and media workers face censorship, abuse, harassment, detention and even death simply for doing their jobs.
World Press Freedom Day 2021: Theme
The World Press Freedom Day theme for 2021 is ‘Information as a Public Good’.
The theme for World Press Freedom Day 2021 recognizes the importance of seeking information as a public good and explores ways to strengthen journalism.
The World Press Freedom Day 2021 will focus on three key topics:
Steps focused on ensuring the economic viability of news media,
Mechanisms for ensuring transparency of internet companies,
Enhanced Media and Information Literacy (MIL) capacities that enable people to recognize and value, defend, and demand, journalism as an important part of information as a public good.
About the World Press Freedom Index:
It has been published every year since 2002 by Reporters Sans Frontieres (RSF) or Reporters Without Borders.
Based in Paris, RSF is an independent NGO with consultative status with the United Nations, UNESCO, the Council of Europe and the International Organization of the Francophonie (OIF).
OIF is a 54 french speaking nations collective.
The Index ranks countries and regions according to the level of freedom available to journalists. However it is not an indicator on the quality of journalism.
The parameters include pluralism, media independence, media environment and self-censorship, legislative framework, transparency, and the quality of the infrastructure that supports the production of news and information.
About World Press Freedom Day
World Press Freedom Day 2021 highlights three key topics:
Steps to ensure the economic viability of news media;
Mechanisms for ensuring transparency of Internet companies;
Enhanced Media and Information Literacy (MIL) capacities that enable people to recognize and value, as well as defend and demand, journalism as a vital part of information as a public good.
It has been organized annually since 1993.
The 2021 Global Conference is hosted by UNESCO and the Government of Namibia.
The Global Conference provides an opportunity to journalists, civil society representatives, national authorities, academics and the broader public to discuss emerging challenges to press freedom and journalists’ safety, and to work together on identifying solutions.
Windhoek Declaration: World Press Freedom Day has its origins in a UNESCO conference in Windhoek in 1991. The event ended on 3 May with the adoption of the landmark Windhoek Declaration for the Development of a Free, Independent and Pluralistic Press.
Purpose: May 3 acts as a reminder to governments to respect their commitment to press freedom. It is an opportunity to:
celebrate the fundamental principles of press freedom;
assess the state of press freedom throughout the world;
defend the media from attacks on their independence;
and pay tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
India’s Low Press Freedom Rank
Paris-based Reporters Without Borders (RSF), in 2020, ranked India 142nd among 180 countries on the World Press Freedom Index 2020.
India’s rank was fallen steadily over the past decade.
India was merely three places ahead of Pakistan, which stands at 145.