Guest bloggers

An angry or informed society? (guest blog) #polis11

This blog by Mariam Cook reflects on the debate about an Informed Society at our Media and Power Journalism Conference. Embracing the angry society needs people. Lots of us. If our political establishments are locked into restrictive, exclusive modes of discourse, how can this generation of communications professionals help publics smash into it? This is the natural question for me […]

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The Specialist Amateur: A New Threat to the Professional Journalist (guest-blog)

While listening to the International Journalism Festival panel on Democracy After Journalism, moderated by POLIS Director Charlie Beckett I was challenged by a new question about the future of journalism.  Through the enlightening debate over journalism’s watchdog function and impassioned discussions of what democracy should be, an underlying theme arose that begged the question: What happens to journalism when real-life […]

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Europe’s double-standards on freedom for Libya (guest-blog)

The intervention in Libya has been portrayed in Europe as part of Western support for emerging democracies in north Africa and the Middle East. Yet, are there double-standards at work when it comes to dealing with one consequence of political upheaval: refugees? POLIS Silverstone scholar Marco Scalvini has been looking at Libya and Tunisia from an Italian/French perspective.     […]

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Syria’s relaxation of internet controls – has it made any difference? (guest blog)

In February, as uprisings swept the Middle East, Syria, the ‘enemy of the Internet’, lifted a five-year ban on some select social media websites – among them Facebook, YouTube and Blogspot.  What difference has it made? Journalist Amanda Nunn, who lived in Syria until recently, reports on what her contacts there tell her. Syria recently gained the unpalatable title of […]

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The worst censor is the self (guest blog)

Censorship is a notoriously difficult thing to measure because of its inherent secretive nature and self-censorship even more so.   While working at one of the larger international organizations in Damascus, Syria, Amanda Nunn was able to glean an insight into how this affects even the most banal articles she wrote for the agency’s website. Having lived and worked in […]

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