Newsletter

Media Dialogue Newsletter #43

Media Dialogue Newsletter
Bishkek, 15 April, 2021

 

In April, grantees of the Media Dialogue grants programme administered by the European Association for Local Democracy (ALDA) – Govori TV, Radio Volna Issyk-Kulya, Association of Community Media, e-newspaper Novye Litsa, IA Akipress, e-newspaper Elgezit published over 200 media products covering topics on the electoral process in terms of freedom of speech and the rule of law aspects.  They covered such topics as importance of voting on local elections, gender equality during local elections, access of people with disabilities to electoral campaign content and voting processes, how to prevent violations on elections, awareness raising after elections on new rules of electing the head of LSG, discussions about Constitution, impact of the local elections and referendum results on democratic developments.

The European Association for Local Democracy (ALDA) announced a call for proposals from videographers or companies to produce reporting videos on the results of projects implemented under the Media Dialogue grant program. Details are in terms of reference.

On April 8-9, the Media Dialogue project jointly with the Civic Initiative of Internet Policy conducted training for more than 30 Kyrgyz-speaking media and civil society representatives, digital activists, and university instructors on the basics of cybersecurity and digital hygiene. Participants learned about their rights to protect personal data, liability for disseminating illegal information, cybersecurity landscape, security risks in social networks, protection of electronic communications and digital data. “Unfortunately, civic activists, journalists, and bloggers are very much targets of cyber-attacks. When it comes to cybersecurity and safety, we are never safe, and there is always something new to learn. Even people who are more literate on this topic can still be very much target in this respect. I hope this training can help you enhance your resilience to cyber threats and be safer,” – said to participants Vittoria Zanellati, Programmes Officer, European Partnership for Democracy. Earlier, on March 24-25 the similar training was conducted for 25 Russian-speaking participants.

The European Partnership for Democracy has been supporting the elaboration of the Information Policy Concept of the Kyrgyz Republic in the framework of the Media Dialogue project. On April 13, a meeting of press secretaries of state agencies and ministries was organized to discuss the priority direction of the Concept – “State Legal Regulation of the Media Sector.”  Participants discussed strategic tasks, the main mechanisms, and key actions for implementing the priority area and expected results elaborated by the Working Group and a wide circle of stakeholders involved in developing the Concept. They also discussed how to improve the interaction of the press services with the media, the legal framework for access to information, the responsibility of the state agencies for failure to provide information, the importance of having a unified platform aimed at developing capacities of press services and improving interaction with mass media.

The Media Dialogue project is funded by the European Union and runs until end of 2021. Its objective is to harness the power of the media in safeguarding conflict-free elections. We have been delivering training and capacity-building activities to help media actors supply accurate and trustworthy election-related content to the citizens of Kyrgyzstan so that they can make informed choices.

We work with print, online and broadcast media outlets as well as production houses, individual journalists, online activists and influencers. Our events serve to improve their editorial standards, upgrade their digital skills, and inject an innovative spirit into the content they produce. The project is engaging government officials, parliamentary deputies, non-governmental and civil society organisations as well as members of the Central Electoral Commission and its territorial branches in an effort to create a more conducive election environment. We collaborate with the media and civil society communities to enhance self-regulation in the media sector and make it more robust and resilient to political manipulation or restrictive measures.

Our programme includes activities to increase the economic independence of the media by providing monetisation workshops, innovative digital content generation events and innovative media start-ups initiatives. We also cooperate with Kyrgyz universities and institutions providing journalism education to boost their curricula and link them up with European counterparts through exchange programmes. All our activities are delivered by a mix of international and local trainers and consultants exploiting areas of expertise offered by each of the Consortium Partners.

For more information about the Project or current and forthcoming opportunities, please get in touch with our Communications Specialist Asylgul Akimjanova at +996504222405, asylgulakimjanova@epd.eu  or the Project Manager, Cholpon Nogoibaeva, cholponnogoibaeva@epd.eu.

In response to the evolving COVID-19 situation, Media Dialogue has been adjusting its activities in line with WHO recommendations and national regulations of the countries involved in the project. Our priority is not to expose any beneficiaries, experts or staff to risks associated with the virus but at the same time to continue delivering the planned Action with every effort made to meet its objectives and maintain its effectiveness in the limiting and challenging circumstances.

 

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