African journalists question US bailouts for US media

Adam Powell raises an interesting point here: U.S. gov’t, foundation subsidies of news media attract criticism in Africa

And this is the big issue for American journalists and journalism.

At what point is “support” turned into editorial direction?

The suggestion that news organizations turn themselves into non-profits (this time by design) to gain the tax benefits and the growing dependency on NGOs for larger stories raise some serious questions about the future of American journalism.

I still remember the basic line, however, it is not the platform that makes good journalism, it is the work behind the story. If the honesty of the work is questioned or up for debate, then journalism is in trouble.

But I think some of the critics of NGO support for journalism products miss an important point: In too many African nations the government is not only paying bills but is dictating the content. There are damn few democracies in that continent. And free journalism needs democracy just as much as democracy needs free journalism.

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Filed under Africa, International News Coverage, Press Freedom

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