The Chapultepec Index of Freedom of Expression and Press shows the evolution of the indicators of freedom in the practice of journalism between 2019-2020 and 2020-2021. The Executive Branch appears to be most influential in unfavorable situations for the press in the Americas.
Brazilian journalist Rubens Valente participated in the "5 questions” section of the LatAm Journalism Review (LJR). In the interview, he talks about the conviction that forces him to pay USD 70,000 to a justice of the Supreme Court. "Its effect was that it provoked the worst censorship of all: self-censorship”, Valente said.
Amendments approved this month by Cuba's National Assembly, which hinder foreign funding and imprison anyone who slanders public officials, provide the Cuban regime with legal tools to justify its attacks on independent press coverage.
Although Uruguay has been considered a benchmark for freedom of expression, the eighth monitoring report by the Center for Archives and Access to Public Information (Cainfo) recorded a 40 percent increase over the previous year in cases of threats and restrictions on journalists. There has been an increase in the number of cases for the third consecutive year and regressive legal reforms in terms of human rights and freedom of expression.
“It is an attack on freedom of expression and information,” journalist Rubens Valente said. The Superior Court of Justice and the Supreme Federal Court of Brazil ruled that Valente has to compensate Supreme Court Justice Gilmar Mendes because of information contained in Valente’s book “Operação Banqueiro.”
In 2018, the Association of Journalists of El Salvador presented a draft bill for the protection of journalists. After almost three years, the effort was cut short. The initiative was archived when the ruling Nuevas Ideas party took control of the Legislative Assembly. The parties that resumed the discussion at the last minute hold each other responsible for the lack of approval.
Journalists in Colombia warned that declining working conditions for the press could become more pronounced in 2022, an election year. The Federation of Colombian Journalists (Fecolper, by its Spanish acronym), released a report title “Unprotected on Feb. 9, the Day of the Journalist in Colombia, assessing the state of journalism and the challenges Colombian journalists face.
A study carried out by Gênero e Número in partnership with Reporters Without Borders (RSF) presents data, testimonials and in-depth interviews on the impacts and effects of online disinformation and violence on the daily lives of women and LGBT+ journalists.
To mark World Press Freedom Day, LatAm Journalism Review (LJR) decided to revive a social media campaign in which we ask journalists from Latin America a simple question: “Why is press freedom important to you?”
Threats and obstacles to journalism in the digital environment will be the topics discussed during this year's commemoration of World Press Freedom Day. Progress will also be analyzed on journalists' safety and impunity, on the 10th anniversary of the UN Plan of Action on this issue.