Today 3rd of May, on the World Press Freedom Day, the Department of Journalism and Media Studies at OsloMet held a seminar discussing the freedom of speech in both a Norwegian and an international context. Professor Rune Ottosen presented the situation for journalists on an international level with increased violence, murder and harassment against journalist.
The Norwegian context was discussed through a panel debate with the participation of Arne Jensen, President of Norwegian Editors Union; Per Elvestuen, Director of Oslo Freedom Forum and cartoonist; Elin Floberghagen, Norwegian Press Association; and Sidsel Avlund, from the Norwegian Public Broadcasting. Even though Norway rank high on the World Press Freedom Index, the whole panel agreed upon that also in Norway we now face increasing threats against journalists. Avlund highlighted the situation in the Norwegian Public Broadcasting, NRK, where as much as 29% of the employees have experienced harassment. However, as Avlund stated: what worries us the most, is that the journalists keep silent.
Not reporting on the problems, keeping information to themselves, is a huge challenge if we want to stop censorship and self-censorship.