World Association of News Publishers

About World Press Freedom Day 2011

About World Press Freedom Day 2011

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Dear Reader,

The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) is committed to defending and promoting a free and independent press worldwide everyday, but particularly on 3 May, World Press Freedom Day.

We invite you to download and freely publish our materials, with credit to WAN-IFRA and the authors, on or around 3 May, to explore press freedom issues with your readers.

This year’s theme is the importance of a free press for democracy, whether emerging or well established.  “Silence kills democracy… But a free press talks”.

A free press is at the very core of the right to free expression, providing a frontline defence for safeguarding access to knowledge and information as defined in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

A free press provides a window through which all other abuses of fundamental rights can be revealed.

It affirms that to criticise, hold to account and call to justice those in power is the right of the many and not the few.

Put simply, freedom of expression is the right that underpins all rights.

To explore these themes in 2011, we offer essays by Google Vice President David Drummond; renowned Tunisian writer Taoufik Ben Brik; head of the World Bank Institute’s media development, Eric Chinje; Pakistan publisher and Golden Pen of Freedom laureate Najam Sethi; Zimbabwean publisher Trevor Ncube and an editorial from the World Editors’ Forum.

New for this year, we’re encouraging newspapers to take up the “white space” challenge by printing white space on your front page, to symbolise what would be missing without a free press.  Click here to find out how you can participate in this initiative with your newspaper supplier.

And of course, we offer our full range of materials do download freely:

Inspire with editorials and interviews from journalists, publishers and public figures.
Stimulate with cartoons from renowned French cartoonist Michel Cambon.
Endorse the campaign by running ready-to-publish adverts with your publication's name.
Evoke emotion with striking high-resolution photographs.
Illustrate with clever infographics.
Encourage young readers and teachers to take part with classroom activities.

You can publish free of charge any editorial and advertising materials available on this site.  You may also translate any of the material into another language that we do not currently offer.

A number of individuals and organisations have made this year's campaign possible. We would like to express our sincere thanks to Agence France-Presse, Russian Guild of Press Publishers, Reporters Without Borders, the Committee to Protect Journalists, Michel Cambon, Sanjeev Saikia, Karim Jouini, the World Editors Forum, Maggie Emerson, An-Nahar and our dedicated team of translators.


Alison Meston's picture

Alison Meston


2011-03-31 18:03

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Journalists continue to find themselves in frequent peril for simply doing their jobs as they strive to report the truth in the passionate belief that reporting what they see is the foundation of a healthy democracy. 3 May is World Press Freedom Day. Read more ...