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Global Press Freedom Has Taken An ‘Unbelievable’ Hit This Year

Global journalismMedia freedom has undergone a “deep and disturbing” decline in several parts of the world and at the global level this year, according to a new release from Reporters Without Borders.

Thus far in 2016, 57 journalists have been killed in connection with their work, 187 remain imprisoned and 44 are currently being held hostage, according to the organization’s latest December tallies. These figures represent professional journalists only. When including media netizens and citizen reporters, the numbers of those slain, detained and held for ransom climb to at least 74, 348 and 52, respectively.


Snowden doc shows NSA blamed Russia for hack of murdered journalist: report

Snowden documents connect Putin to murder of journalistThe National Security Agency (NSA) knew that the Russian government hacked the email account of a prominent journalist the year before she was killed in Moscow, documents published by The Intercept show.

The 2006 murder of longtime Kremlin critic Anna Politkovskaya — who was gunned down in the elevator of her apartment complex — is widely believed to have been a contract killing. Politkovskaya was a noted critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, and it has long been suspected that the murder was carried out on his orders.

The NSA compiled an internal file on Politkovskaya, which was exposed as part of the Edward Snowden leaks.


'Profitable' Washington Post adding more than five dozen journalists

WaPoTwenty-sixteen was the year The Washington Post came of age — again. In its audience growth, in the ambitiousness of its journalism, in its impact on the American conversation, the Post became the U.S.’s fourth national newspaper company, joining The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and USA Today.

Now, come 2017, the Post seems to be doing something unique in daily journalism: It is adding journalists early in the year.


Egypt arrests Al Jazeera news producer during vacation

Al Jazeera news producer arrested by EgyptyAn Al Jazeera news producer has been arrested in Egypt over accusations of attempting to overthrow the government and being a member of the banned Muslim Brotherhood.

Mahmoud Hussein was arrested at his Cairo home on Friday, Al Jazeera Media Network said, but it was not known where he was being held.

"Al Jazeera holds Egyptian authorities responsible for the safety of Hussein and is calling for his immediate release," the Qatar-based network said in a statement.

Hussein, who lives in the capital Doha, used to work in Egypt before Al Jazeera closed its office there in 2013.


Facebook could face $180M fine for allegedly misleading EU

Faebook to face EU fineThe European Commission charged that Facebook Inc. misled regulators in its takeover of WhatsApp, an accusation which could lead to a $180 million fine.

Facebook's $22 billion acquisition of WhatsApp in 2014 included assurances it could not merge WhatApp data with its other services, such as linking WhatsApp information, including phone numbers, to individual Facebook accounts. After Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram began sharing customers' data during the summer of 2016, the action generated angry responses from privacy activists and regulators, including the European Union's European Commission.


Donald Trump’s Real Threat to the Press

Freedom of the PressAnyone who doubts that Donald Trump could use the levers of the presidency to strike back at the media should talk to Chip Babcock.

He’s the veteran First Amendment attorney who represented the Dallas Times Herald in February, 1984, when one of its reporters was facing a possible indictment for reporting on undocumented immigrants.

The reporter, Jack Fischer, was in a car with a nun, a Catholic lay worker, and three undocumented Salvadoran migrants when the car was stopped by the border patrol and its occupants were arrested. An assistant U.S. attorney drew up an indictment against Fischer and the others.


German firms including BMW pull advertising from Breitbart

Ads pulled from Breitbart siteMajor German companies including BMW have stopped advertising on Breitbart, the rightwing US news and opinion site that campaigned for Donald Trump and plans to launch in Europe before key elections next year.

The boycott, prompted by a social media campaign titled KeinGeldFürRechts or No Money for the Right, follows a similar decision by Kellogg’s in the US, to which Breitbart responded by urging readers to stop buying the cereal firm’s products.


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