Philippine journalists’ perspectives on press freedom: The impact of international media campaigns
Legally, press freedom in the Philippines is protected by the 1987 Constitution. However, media laws in the country, especially those referring to freedom of the expression and the press, tend to be inconsistent and volatile. In fact, the country continues to be low ranking in the Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index. In response to attacks on press freedom, international media organisations have stepped up to defend and support the Philippine press. Drawing from data gathered through 20 semi-structured indepth interviews with Filipino journalists, this study sought to examine the effect of the government hostility against media on journalists’ perception of press freedom and their attitude towards interventions from international media organisations and coalitions. More specifically, it looks at the impact (or lack thereof) of global media coalitions and foreign media organisations in the country. Findings show that local media are appreciative of the support given by international media organisations in promoting media freedom in the country. However, journalists also noted that when only one segment of the media is targeted, it can lead to divisiveness among local media practitioners.
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