PRESS RELEASES, DECLARATIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Vienna, 22 July 2010
The South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists from South East and Central Europe is pleased to announce the DialogueConference Media in South East and Central Europe and EU: Hate Speech and Stereotypes in the Media, Role of Media in Conflicts and War, Professional Standards and Education of Journalists, which will be held in Vienna, Austria, from 14 – 16 September 2010.
The Conference is being organised by SEEMO in cooperation with the Austrian Development Cooperation (ADC) – Austrian Development Agency (ADA). SEEMO is expecting over 70 leading media professionals as participants that will have the opportunity to take part on 14 September on a one day gathering in Bratislava, and than on 15 and 16 September in Vienna. In cooperation with long year SEEMO partner Erste Foundation (Erste Stiftung) a reception-dinner will be organised on Wednesday 15 September 2010 in the evening. One of the confirmed speakers of the SEEMO conference is Erhard Busek, Jean Monnet Professor ad personam, President of the Institute for the Danube Region and Central Europe, Coordinator of SECI – Southeast European Cooperative Initiative, Former Special Coordinator of the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe and President of the European Forum Alpbach.
“This is an important gathering for exchanging experiences amongst the leading media professionals in South East and Central Europe” pointed outBoris Bergant, former European Broadcasting Union (EBU) Vice President, former RTV Slovenija Deputy Director and SEEMO Board President.
SEEMO Board Member Marta Palics from Novi Sad, Serbia, said: “Hate speech is a reality in the region, the war in the nineties brought a lot of unprofessional behaviours in the media scene in former Yugoslavia. It is vital for SEEMO to follow up this topic.”
SEEMO Secretary General Oliver Vujovic added: “SEEMO organised a similar conference in Vienna in 2006 and it is very important that media professionals from the region are meeting again in Vienna. The fact that the meeting is going to be held in the city where the headquarters of SEEMO is located, is of particular importance for our organisation.”
This Vienna DialogueConference SEEMO is preparing after it organised in May this year very successful the First South East and Central Europe Investigative Journalism Days in Montenegro. At the end of this year, on 2 and 3 December 2010, SEEMO will organise together with Konrad Adaneur Stiftung (KAS) and the German publishing group WAZ Medien Gruppe the IV South East Europe Media Forum in Budapest with topic Access to Information – Sources for Investigative Journalists. All this activities are happen in the year when SEEMO is celebrating 10 years of work. Since 2000, SEEMO has brought together, in various meetings, over 9,800 editors-in-chief, media executives, leading journalists and public persons from the region. Additional to that SEEMO is finishing in this year the Handbook for Investigative Journalist, as also the 2010 edition of the SEEMO South East and Central Europe Media Handbook, that should be published in to Volumes on over 2500 pages. During this jubilee year SEEMO is also working on the publications Women, Men and Media and Media, Marketing and Business, and on the regular editions of its media magazine De Scripto SEEMO will continue in 2010 with publishing new books in its edition Leading Investigative Journalists.
Vienna, 01 Decembar 2010
The WAZ Media Group, Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation (KAS) and the South and East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), in cooperation with the Central European Initiative (CEI) and Access Info and together with local partners Pannon Lapok Tarsasaga, HVG, the Network for Reporting on Eastern Europe (N-Ost), Raiffeisen Bank International AG (RBI) and Fuggetlen Mediakozpont (Center for Independent Journalism) are pleased to announce the IV South East Europe Media Forum (SEE Media Forum), which will bring together media CEOs, editors-in-chief, leading investigative journalists, business professionals, governmental representatives, CEOs from companies active in South East and Central Europe and representatives of NGOs. The IV SEE Media Forum, centered around the topic “Access to Information – Sources for Investigative Journalists”, is scheduled to take place from 2 – 3 December 2010 in Budapest, Hungary. László Kövér, Speaker of the National Assembly of Hungary will open the Forum.
Welcome speeches will be given by Srgjan Kerim, President of the 62nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly and special envoy for political affairs of the WAZ Media Group, Frank Spengler, Deputy Head of the European and International Cooperation Department of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), Gerhard Pfanzelter, Secretary General of Central European Initiative (CEI), and Oliver Vujovic, Secretary General of the South and East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO).
After the opening, a roundtable between journalists and experts on the hot media topic of WikiLeaks will be held.
Other panels at this year’s SEE Media Forum are: “Tools for Investigative Journalism”; “Media NGOs and Access To Information”; “Access to Information – Regional Experience”; “Access To Information – International Experience”; “Transparency of Media Ownership and Public Information”; and “Coming To Terms with The Past – Accessibility of Secret Archives”.
More than 250 media professionals are expected to take part. A welcome reception will be organised in cooperation with Raiffeisen Bank International AG (RBI). During the SEE Media Forum the annual CEI SEEMO Award for Outstanding Merits in Investigative Journalism as well as the annual WAZ-IFJ (International Federation of Journalists) Courage Award will be presented and awarded to outstanding investigative journalists.
The WAZ Media Group and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) will present the team of Hungarian authors Jozsef Gelei (50) and Laszlo Muranyi (54) with the “WAZ-IFJ Prize for Courage in Journalism 2010”. The sponsors will award Croatian journalist Hrvoje Slabek (38) a second-place distinction. The jury has decided to split the prize, which is being announced for the second time.
The Central European Initiative (CEI) and the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) will present to Adrian Mogos from Romania the CEI SEEMO Award for Outstanding Merits in Investigative Journalism 2010, along with a ‘special mention’ for Iryna Khalip from Belarus and Lydia Pavlova from Bulgaria for their valuable contribution to investigative journalism in their countries.
In addition to the working sessions, the two-day forum offers a unique opportunity to meet leading professionals for an open discussion about media, investigative journalism and access to information in South East and Central Europe.
The South East Europe Media Forum (SEEMF) is a joint project by the WAZ Media Group, Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation (KAS) and the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO). The first SEEMF was held in 2007 in Zagreb, Croatia; more than 150 participants took part. The second SEEMF was held in Sofia, Bulgaria, in 2008, with more than 250 participants. The third SEEMF was held in 2009 in Tirana, Albania; about 300 participants attended.
Registration for the event remains open. For further information and registration forms for the SEE Media Forum, please contact Ms. Krasimira Plachetzky at the SEEMO office in Vienna (E-mail: email@example.com ) or Mr. Sandor Orban in Budapest (E-mail: SEEMF2010Budapest@cij.hu )
Vienna, 14 Decembar 2010
The International Press Institute (IPI) and its affiliate, the South and East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), will hold a press freedom fact-finding mission to Hungary on 15-16 December 2010.
The mission participants will be: SEEMO Secretary General Oliver Vujovic, SEEMO Board Member Marta Palics, and IPI Press Freedom and Communications Manager Anthony Mills. They will be a meeting with a broad array of journalists and state officials.
The mission comes at a particularly worrying time for press freedom in Hungary.
In early December, several Hungarian newspapers published blank front pages to protest against legislation which they warn curtails press freedom. In recent months, IPI and SEEMO have also expressed concern at legislative efforts – described by the ruling party as necessary media reform – to limit press freedom in Hungary.
Legislation currently being discussed in parliament envisages granting the official media watchdog the power to levy sizeable fines on private media outlets, and to sanction media outlets for “unbalanced coverage” and transgressions against the rules on covering “sex, violence or alcohol,” according to the BBC.
The government has argued that the law will guarantee a more balanced media, the BBC noted.
The BBC also reported that if the legislation currently under discussion passes media outlets will have to devote at least 50% of programming to European productions and radio stations will have to fill at least a quarter of their air time with Hungarian music.
In addition, the bill contains a proposal to allow the newly-created Media Council – all of whose members are government nominees – to hand down fines which must be paid before they can be appealed. Since the fines could total tens of thousands of Euros, some media outlets could face financial threats to their existence.
Parliament has been debating the bill – which enjoys overwhelming support from centre-right government parties – for the past few days, and is expected to pass it any day now.
In November, Hungary’s parliament passed legislation ostensibly aimed at promoting press freedom but which in fact allows for journalists to be forced to give up their confidential sources in cases involving vaguely-defined ‘national security’.
SEEMO Secretary General Oliver Vujovic said: “For the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) this visit is very important. We aim to obtain clear feedback from media and state representatives about the media situation, problems, and developments in Hungary.”
IPI Press Freedom and Communications Manager Anthony Mills said: “We have in recent months repeatedly expressed our concern at the deteriorating press freedom situation in Hungary. The legislation currently being discussed in parliament is further evidence of an attempt to limit the scope of press freedom in the country. That’s why missions like this are so important.”
****For further information, please contact:
Mirjana Milosevic SEEMO Press Freedom Coordinator South and East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.seemo.org