World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers

Journalism without fear or favour

World News Publishing Focus

World News Publishing Focus
Your Guide to the Changing Media Landscape

Journalism without fear or favour

Good journalism is made for times such as these. Good journalists have ensured our leaders remain accountable, their policies are scrutinised, and their promises will be kept in check as we navigate the coming months and a cautious return to optimism.

To mark World Press Freedom Day, Sunday, 3 May, we must celebrate this, recognise the sacrifices of media professionals who ensure the daily free flow of information, and hope that independent media can financially survive to help lead us into better times.

During a crisis, journalism is arguably more vital than ever. The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly placed independent media front and centre in providing verified, accurate and potentially life-saving information, particularly in countries where government has floundered, or the COVID-19 response has been found wanting.

But to say we need journalism now more than ever masks a reality worth reiterating loud and clear – especially as we celebrate World Press Freedom Day. Independent journalism is vital, day in, day out, for everyone. Whether we are facing global catastrophe or exposing local concerns, media’s public interest role is essential to how we understand our world and make decisions in it.

At this critical time, journalists and media professionals need our support. The measures taken in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic have accentuated the financial precarity of media worldwide, risking the survival of independent journalism and challenging the safety and economic security of media professionals.

It remains to be seen what will survive of our profession – the profession as we know it today - once this crisis has passed. The landscape may look very different; the way we gather, produce and consume the news likewise. Despite the painful, inevitable turmoil this will bring, we must embrace the opportunities that arise, the new ways of working, doing business, and our relationship with the world and people around us.

But one thing is certain to prevail, regardless of how different, how difficult the future looks.

The very soul of our profession, our ability to conduct journalism - without fear or favour.


UNESCO has created campaign materials in six languages that are free to use to help you mark 3 May, World Press Freedom Day. They include banners, posters, logos, social media messages and campaign messages. More to come this week - including an op-ed. The tool kit is included here as an attachment.

Please let us know how you use them, or if you run your own content be sure to share with us so we can help promote it, on or around 3 May.




2020-04-24 12:45

Author information

The World Editors Forum is the organisation within the World Association of Newspapers devoted to newspaper editors worldwide. The Editors Weblog (, launched in January 2004, is a WEF initiative designed to facilitate the diffusion of information relevant to newspapers and their editors.

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