What press freedom means to me?

Sonia Abdellatif
Posted June 18, 2012 from Tunisia

What freedom of press means to you?

IJNet[1] asked a variety of participants at World Press Freedom day to define what press freedom means to them.

The answers ranged from working without fear of government reprisal to helping support democratic freedoms and institutions. Others talked of avoiding bias and being objective.

Yet others put it in stark economic terms. Without money, there is no free press in some places[2].

What press freedom means to me?

I asked my friend (a post graduate Tunisian female and a high level civil servant) what press freedom means to you? and she answered that “liberty of press is when all parties can express themselves without fear”.

As a Tunisian woman I think that Freedom means more than just ‘free to do whatever one wants’, Press freedom is a right of an individual to report objectively. Some people said that Press freedom should be related to informing people rather than forming opinions, but I think that we can’t avoid forming opinions even with objective reporting.

I also think that free press needs financial resources, we have a free press, but we suffered from very heavy financial crises.

Press freedom has a close relationship with the awareness of the journalist and the reader. Also, the degree of freedom varies according to the form of the practice of journalism: professional journalist and citizen journalist. Both are engaged in press freedom, but the practice varies depending on the legal and moral framework.

Citizen journalism helped to develop the practice of journalism, and enabled. Professional journalist new sources of news.

Tunisians have died for the freedom of the press and of expression and revolted for dignity, and I think that Press Freedom and free civil society are the guarantor of the individual dignity , they are the red light in the face of governmental power and they ensure the exercise of democracy, especially in countries that are undergoing Arab Spring, which is building democracy.

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