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The State of the Freedom of the Press in 2019

This year Cision released its 10th annual Global State of the Media Report based on responses from 1,999 journalists globally, answering questions on everything from trust in the media to what role data plays in publishing decisions. What Cision hasn’t published until now are insights learned about journalists’ feelings relating to freedom of the press, a vital part of the worldwide communications infrastructure.

Across the globe, 49% of journalists feel freedom of the press is deteriorating, although in some countries that deterioration is felt more strongly than in others. The good news is that 65% of journalists don’t feel they’ve had to change their tone or language, and only 35% are concerned about the safety of themselves and their peers.

At 67%, Brazil tops the list of countries where journalists feel their freedom has deteriorated, while only 41% of Canadian journalists feel theirs’ is declining.

The U.S. sits in the middle at 57%, but within its borders 69% of journalists believe the public has lost trust in the media in the last year (Cronkite, we miss you).

As for changes journalists have experienced, 42% in the U.S. are increasingly concerned about safety, while 33% source their stories differently and 21% are concerned for operational security.

What this means for PR and comms pros

PR and comms pros couldn’t do their jobs without journalists, influencers and other media professionals. To ensure a healthy and vital free press, it’s imperative that PR goes beyond building relevant pitches (although that’s important too), to helping to support journalistic safety.

And of course continuing to provide relevant, engaging information and ideas.

This can be accomplished by providing data and evidence whenever possible to substantiate pitches, in addition to being more flexible in how you interact with journalists, even speaking anonymously, confidentially or on background when necessary.


Want more? See the full special report here.  


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