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Assessing and promoting civil and minority rights in South Africa.

Media freedom

[Source: Daily Maverick by Anton Harber.]

Media ownership, control and influence is a contested space in a democracy, and so it should be. In the case of South Africa, recent developments are of particular interest: the ANC has put away the big stick, and is now using state resources, patronage and state power to reshape the media to its liking. The result has become dramatically visible in recent months, with a tangible diminishing of the space for critical, independent, accountability journalism. This new approach was crafty, insidious and more effective.

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SAM paper 2[Source: by Paul Vecchiato.]

A breakdown of government advertising spending managed by the Department of Communications shows a trend of rewarding state-friendly media, says Witwatersrand University director of journalism studies Anton Harber. Read more

SAM Papers 3[Source: by Allister Sparks.]

There must surely be something symbolic about a former editor of the Rand Daily Mail becoming a columnist for newspapers of Naspers (formerly Nasionale Pers), especially Die Burger, a paper so intimately associated with its first editor, DF Malan, the founding father of apartheid SA. Read more

SAM Norway[Original source: by Rebecca Davis.  Republished:]

Wednesday’s deadly attack on French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo forces publishers and media practitioners worldwide to consider how far they are willing to go to uphold freedom of expression. Rebecca Davis spoke to South African editors, and the country’s most famous cartoonist, to find out whether the Charlie Hebdo attack would make them less likely to take risks with provocative content in future.

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South Africa at a Glance
56 500 000 (mid 2017 estimate)
4.4% y/y in January 2018 (CPI) & +5.1 y/y in January 2018 (PPI)
3,1% q/q for the 4th quarter of 2017
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