Last year saw a chilling spike in attacks on the press around the world, according to The Committee to Protect Journalists, especially on digital journalists covering conflict areas. What are the unique risks journalists face, how do you stay safe while covering protests and secure your digital tools to protect your content and sources? Hear from journalists who have been detained or arrested as well as advocates who are working to protect them.
For future conflict reporting and security questions: http://cpj.org/
From the floor: now, the journalism community has a culture of security that it didn’t a few decades ago. But security needs to find its way into education and not just be taught at a security “boot camp” in the field.
In J schools, learning digital security should be a one-credit course.–Smyth
No. 1: figure out the threat of the devices you use. “If you’re in Syria and you’re using encryption, authorities can see that you’re using that encryption.”-Smyth
“Use a dumb phone if you’re in a dangerous situation” –O’Brien
O’Brien: “The guy kicking down your door at 3 a.m. and taking your laptop” is the most common attack on journalists.
In war times, business operates as usual in many communities. The fighting isn’t the only story. Other stories lie elsewhere, like shrimp fisheries and in neighborhoods.
From the floor: What can editors do to reduce the risk for journalists in conflict zones?
Cartels target newspapers, forcing them to abandon coverage of crucial stories. But others fill the gap. “If there’s a vaccum of journalism, citizen journalists come into that space”
Calculating your reporting risk: https://twitter.com/CIMA_Media/status/249628804207763456
Smyth: there’s a data void when it comes to prosecutions per capita. Those stats would indicate the degree of press freedom in a given region.
From the floor: in Latin America, a blogger doesn’t count as a journalist.
Online journos in conflict zones should give up using their mobile devices as reporting tools–or know that those devices can be easily tracked. https://twitter.com/IRPChirps/status/249627391490670592
O’Brien: in Libya and in Syria, traditional correspondents don’t often realize the danger of insecure phone and satellite connections.
At this session, an audience well educated in conflict reporting: https://twitter.com/melodyawilson/status/249626658406031360
Journalists aren’t the only ones at risk, O’Brien says. Sources come under fire, too, after being exposed in news media in contentious regions.
“Committing acts of journalism” leads online journalists the world over to receive similar threats.
Who’s a journalist? Smyth: The publication that reporters work for doesn’t dictate whether they fit that classification. “What’s important is that you’re engaged in what looks like and smells like journalism.”
In Tunisia under Ben Ali, the online magazine Tunisie put out information not found in newspapers
War correspondents aren’t the only journos at risk, says Frank Smyth. More journalists are murdered outside war zones than in them, he says.