Category Archives: Media

Anna Lindh Foundation to hold media debate ahead of Mediterranean Forum

ALF New Logo - 2012

The Anna Lindh Foundation for Inter-Cultural Dialogue (ALF) an organisation which promotes knowledge, mutual respect and intercultural dialogue between the people of the Euro-Mediterranean region, working through a network of more than 3,000 civil society organisations in 43 countries, is holding the third Preparatory Meeting of the Anna Lindh Forum 2013 from 28 February to 1 March in Barcelona, Spain. The theme of the meeting will be ‘Media facing tensions and transitions in the Mediterranean’.

The meeting is a preparatory event of the Anna Lindh Mediterranean Forum 2013, which will be a landmark gathering of 1,000 leading civil society actors and policy makers following the Arab Awakening and the crisis in Europe. The Euro-Med Media Meeting will shape the Forum’s media track debating and developing actions aimed at supporting journalists in facing the challenges of the new social and cultural landscape which is emerging in the region.

The Meeting will be co-organised with the ALF Head of the Spanish Network, the European Institute of the Mediterranean (IEMed) and the Secretariat of the Union for the Mediterranean with the media partnership of France 24, RFI and Radio Monté Carlo Doualiya.

The event will gather participants from ALF Networks, existing regional platforms/networks, experts and grassroots level representatives working on media related issues. Twenty participants will be identified through the call for participation, and around 30 experts from the field of media will be invited from the host country and the other Euromed countries.

The deadline for application is Thursday 10 January 2012 (00:00 Egypt Time – GMT+2).

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EC Active Ageing Photo and Film Competition Winners Announced

The winning photo "Ageless Joy" by Salih Bahceci

The winning photo “Ageless Joy” by Salih Bahceci

C3A, the Cyprus Third Age Association was one of the winners of the 2012 DigiMe digital photo and video competition, sponsored by the Representation of the European Commission in Cyprus and taking as its theme the European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations. C3A received an honourable mention – and a 100 euro voucher for electronic gadgets – for a series of photographs showing the group’s educational activities which, as the judges said, illustrated vividly Active Ageing in Action.

The overall winner in the photo category was “Ageless Joy”, taken by Salih Bahçeci, a student of digital media at London Metropolitan University, while the short clip “An ordinary life of my grandparents” by Andreas Psaltis, a final year pupil at the Grammar School, Nicosia, won the video prize. The two category winners each received an iPad.

There were also honourable mentions for Elly Rousou for the photo entitled ‘Youth has no Age’, and for Yetin Arslan with ‘Fairy-tale Cycle’.

EllyRousou received an honourable mention for "Youth Has No Age"

EllyRousou received an honourable mention for “Youth Has No Age”

Speaking at the prize-giving ceremony held at the Home for Cooperation in Nicosia’s Buffer Zone, the Head of Representation of the European Commission in Cyprus George Markopouliotis said:

“This is the second year of the DigiMe digital video and photo competition. We at the Representation are happy to support this online event and we do hope that it will carry on with the same success for a few more years to come. Our intention was to to raise awareness of the contribution that older people make to society and I think that the entries to the competition do this quite admirably. It is also clear that these issues, like the environment and climate change in last year’s competition, are obviously of concern to all communities in Cyprus – two-thirds of this year’s entries come from Greek Cypriots and approximately one-third from the Turkish Cypriot community.”

Entries in the DigiMe competition are not judged on artistic merit alone but also on relevance and, crucially, on the impact they have online. This impact, the buzz, which this year’s entries have generated, has been considerable. There were more than 100 entries in all which attracted nearly 3,000 votes on the DigiMe website, more than 2,000 YouTube views and nearly 4,000 likes and comments on Facebook.

The DigiMe competition is managed on behalf of the Representation of the European Commission in Cyprus by the NGO Support Centre and the Cyprus Community Media Centre.

You can see all the entries at the DigiMe website: http://www.digime.org.cy

The future of Community Media in Central and Eastern Europe: Access, Independence and Rights

This press release was issued by AMARC Europe in Budapest on 13 November 2012.

For more information, contact Francesco Diasio, Regional Coordinator of AMARC Europe – fradiasio@gmail.com

—————————

Community radio representatives, academics and regulators from 20 Western, Central and Eastern Europe countries gathered in Budapest for the International Forum “Public Policies and Media Pluralism. The future of Community Radio in Central and East Europe” in order to discuss the current state of media pluralism in the region.

The community media sector operates unevenly across Europe: while there is significant activity in some Member States, it barely exists in others. The lack of clear definitions and guidelines for community media is leading to confusion and disingenuous media landscapes that are not pluralistic. For media pluralism to exist, there must be active and sustainable media institutions and access to licensing across all sectors, including public, commercial and community media broadcasting.

Associative and community radios are all essential actors supporting human rights and promoting active citizenship. Communication rights, including access to information and freedom of expression, are at the heart of democratic societies. An essential component of this is the right to freely communicate via platforms that are independent from government or commercial pressures.

Forum participants expressed the fact that technological innovation and digital media transformations do not themselves guarantee diversity or quality information. New media environments must not be organized in ways that generate new or reinforce existing exclusions and inequalities.

Participants also reaffirmed the need for political frameworks and public policies to guarantee truly independent regulatory authorities as a prerequisite to democratic media landscapes. Independent regulatory authorities must support the principle of equal treatment in the attribution of electromagnetic spectrum, resources and broadcast licensing. Spectrum is a public good and must be allocated with public interest objectives in mind and not merely market-driven approaches.

Further, participants share the position that a major obstacle towards the further development and sustainability of community media is the need for enabling political and media environments that support community-based media, as well as the existence of strong civil societies.

Participants expressed concern about the situation in Hungary where the number of genuine community radio stations is decreasing at an alarming rate and the new media laws appear to place obligations on the sector that threaten its future. The Hungarian community radio sector has been a model for Central and Eastern Europe and should be supported.

For these reasons, the participants of the International Forum call on the governments of Central and Eastern Europe to acknowledge and recognize associative and community radios as a distinct media sector, ensuring equal treatment to this sector in access to the audiovisual spectrum while appreciating the distinctiveness of community radio.

Governments need to legally secure the independence of regulatory authorities, and implement the standards for community media as adopted by the European Union and the Council of Europe.

The public forum was an initiative of AMARC Europe (World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters), in partnership with the Center for Media & Communication Studies of Central European University and the Hungarian Federation of Free Radios.

Cyprus Community Media Centre EOI – Studio

CALL FOR EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST FOR

Technical expertise in supporting the development of a multimedia studio (design and technical specifications)

The Cyprus Community Media Centre (CCMC) is seeking to commission specialised services to assist with the design and installation of a multimedia studio for the premises located in the UN Buffer Zone/Ledra Palace Grounds Nicosia.

Potential technical experts are hereby invited to submit their Expressions of Interest (EOI) in providing the following types of services:

  • The design of a multimedia studio
  • Development of technical specifications for installation of a multimedia studio and/or refurbishment of existing spaces into studios

Suppliers interested in qualifying should submit their Expression of Interest along with the following documents:

  • Detailed description of previous experience and/or CV
  • Detailed description of relevant past experience in studio design and/or refurbishment/installation
  • Reference list of major clients in the past three years

The Expression of Interest and accompanying documents must be received no later than 29 November 2012, 16:00hrs at the following address: Cyprus Community Media Centre, P.O. Box 24359, Nicosia CY 1703

or

info@cypruscommunitymedia.org

Please clearly mark postal submissions and electronic submissions indicating:

Cyprus Community Media Centre EOI-Studio

Expressions of Interest received after the above deadline will not be considered. CCMC reserves the right to accept or reject any Expression of Interest.

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Mapping Community Media in Europe

CCMC has quite a few claims to fame, but if we are not mistaken the idea of mapping the Community Media landscape in Europe for the first time was born in Nicosia during the first annual CMFE Conference last November. The project aimed to create a complete picture of the European Community Media sphere so as to inform policy decisions for institutions such as the European Union and the Council of Europe.

A survey was created by the Community Media Forum Europe (CMFE) with the help of the European Platform of Regulatory Authorities (EPRA) and its members as well as some national federations, targeting 49 countries, with data now available for 39 of them.

According to the data collected by CMFE, “in January 2012 there were 2237 community radio stations and 521 community television stations in Europe. Most stations are located in EU member countries especially in France, Netherlands, Italy, United Kingdom, Denmark, Spain, Germany and Sweden. Only 122 radio and 9 television stations are located in countries outside the EU … In 17 countries (including four non-EU countries) the community media sector is regulated in the media law and as such this third media sector is recognized. In some European countries the community media sector is supported by government funding. Austria, Denmark, Germany, Ireland and the Netherlands have substantial funding systems for both community radio and television. Belgium, Italy, Norway and Switzerland to a lesser extent. In France community radio is financed up to 40% by government funding.”

The next task for CMFE will be to rate each European country in order to enhance the development of community radio and community television in Europe, and we look forward to working with them on creating a more enabling environment for Community Media in Cyprus.

Συμμετοχη του Κεντρου Κοινοτικων Μεσων Επικοινωνιας στην ημεριδα «Παιδεια για τα Μεσα Μαζικης Ενημερωσης»

 

To Κέντρο Κοινοτικών Μέσων Επικοινωνίας (CCMC) θα συμμετάσχει στην ημερίδα ενημέρωσης με θέμα «Παιδεία για τα Μ.Μ.Ε. και προώθηση των επιπέδων της Παιδείας για τα Μέσα στην Κυπριακή Δημοκρατία».

Η ημερίδα, που συνδιοργανώνεται από την Αρχή Ραδιοτηλεόρασης Κύπρου και το Υπουργείο Παιδείας και Πολιτισμού, θα διεξαχθεί την Τετάρτη 10 Οκτωβρίου στις 09:30 π.μ. στη Δημοσιογραφική Εστία στη Λευκωσία.

Η παρέμβαση του CCMC θα ξεκινήσει στος 11:00 π.μ. με θέμα «Οι πολίτες παράγουν Μέσα. Μια άλλη πτυχή της Παιδείας για τα Μέσα», και θα επικεντρώνεται στην ίδια την παραγωγή Μέσων και πώς αυτή δομείται στο πλαίσιο της Παιδείας για τα Μέσα (Media Literacy), καθώς και στον ρόλο και την σημασία των Κοινοτικών Μέσων Επικοινωνίας (Community Media) στην Παιδεία για τα Μέσα.

Με βάση Οδηγία της Ευρωπαϊκής Επιτροπής το θέμα Παιδεία για τα Μέσα Μαζικής Ενημέρωσης έχει ανατεθεί στην Αρχή Ραδιοτηλεόρασης της κάθε χώρας-μέλους της Ε.Ε. Η Αρχή Ραδιοτηλεόρασης Κύπρου προχώρησε στη σύσταση ειδικής επιτροπής για σκοπούς προγραμματισμού σειράς δράσεων που αφορούν στο κεφάλαιο «Παιδεία για τα Μέσα», και η ημερίδα αποτελεί σύσταση της ειδικής αυτής επιτροπής.

Η ημερίδα, σύμφωνα με δελτίο τύπου που εξέδωσε η Αρχή Ραδιοτηλεόρασης, αποσκοπεί «στην ενημέρωση των εμπλεκόμενων φορέων στο θέμα της Παιδείας για τα Μ.Μ.Ε. και σε συζήτηση και ανταλλαγή απόψεων για το πώς οι ίδιοι βλέπουν το δικό τους ρόλο στην ευρύτερη προσπάθεια προώθησης των μορφών και των επιπέδων της Παιδείας για τα Μέσα στη Δημοκρατία προς όφελος του κοινωνικού συνόλου».

Need an Incentive? Check out our Awards for Media Collaboration!

The summer is well and truly over!

Following hot on the heels of the launch of Make Media 2012 CCMC is taking another bold step towards promoting deeper collaboration between the media across the divide with the launch of its groundbreaking Incentive Awards for Media Collaboration.

Many of you will remember, or will have been involved in, the Collaborative Media Initiative, or CMI for short, a project run under the auspices of CCMC. Well, the final report entitled “A Potential Untapped: Media Working Together across the Divide in Cyprus” (read the whole report on our issuu account) recommended that CCMC continue its work in promoting professional collaboration between the media in Cyprus, as well as position itself strategically as a ‘first point of call’ for all interested in working with colleagues based across the divide.

And we listened! The Incentive Awards aims to promote professional collaboration between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot media and encourage the emergence of a public media space for common use for all Cypriots, and CCMC is inviting proposals to be submitted for Awards in the following categories:

Institutional Collaboration: which establish partnerships between media outlets across the divide

Television Production: for the coproduction of public service announcements and other short-length co-productions on issues of relevance to all Cypriots

Radio Production: for radio stations and radio journalists to produce audio programmes on five assigned thematic areas

Print Journalism: print article proposals that will facilitate investigative reporting and research

Online Media: for the creation of web-based forums for information exchange and the sharing of opinions across the divide.

Help us spread the word, and encourage potential applicants to read the Terms and Conditions and submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) form. Both documents are available here. The total budget we have earmarked for the Incentive Awards is €15,000, and we are accepting applications in English, Greek or Turkish.

We’ve set a deadline for submission of the EOI forms on 30 September 2012.

We are waiting to hear from you!

Calling all Creatives! CCMC launches MakeMedia 2012

It’s not that we’re no longer gonna be making our own productions… It’s just that we thought that it was time we opened up a little and work with your creativity to get the stories and voices that really matter out in the open.

Today CCMC lauched Make Media 2012, an opportunity for a wide range of media producers, filmmakers and creative freelancers to connect with CCMC and its mandate of amplifying the voice of all communities of Cyprus. CCMC is welcoming productions realised in a variety of ways including but not limited to Documentary, Animation, Audio Slideshow, Multimedia, Motion Graphics, Narrative/Fiction, Podcasts and Radio.

The best productions will be showcased at a CCMC Film Festival sometime next Spring.

We are open to proposals for individual pieces of 3-5 minutes in length or a series of up to five episodes and focused around the following six thematic areas:

1.    Gender
2.    Youth
3.    Environment
4.    Active Ageing and Solidarity Between Generations
5.    Benefit of Community Media in Cyprus
6.    Media Literacy

Given the  nature of our work we hope that each entry contributes to greater understanding of the communities of Cyprus, and include the cross-cutting theme of peaceful coexistence and/or reconciliation.

Make Media 2012 is open to filmmakers, production persons or skilled and experienced amateurs. Applicants are welcome to work in partnership with others but the total budget allocated for the production will have to cover those additional costs. CCMC will support the production and offer use of its equipment, as well as supporting translating the production into English, Greek and Turkish.

For all of you that are interested you can read the full details and download an application form available on the CCMC website. Applications may be submitted in English, Greek or Turkish and the deadline for submission of the application forms is 21 September 2012.

We are going to have a second round of applications announced later in the year as well.

So start applying, and if you need any more information, you know where to find us!

Five Years in the Making: NGO Law Reform in Cyprus

This article was first published on page 16-17 of The Cyprus Weekly (3 August).

Yiouli Taki cuts a frustrated figure. As the coordinator for the NGO Initiative, an informal group of civil society representatives working towards reform of the legal framework for non-governmental organisations (NGOs), she has spent countless working hours organising meetings and drafting letters with the aim of achieving greater legal recognition of the sector. “This is as much about the process of reform as it is about the legislation”, says Taki, who doubles up as lead researcher at INDEX Research and Dialogue, a non-profit organisation working on issues of social policy. “Five years since this process started we do not know where we stand, and we are frustrated”, she adds.

Back in November 2007 things were on the up. Civil society, a novel concept for a country which just three years previous had joined the European Union (EU) had been limited to – and dominated by – institutions such as trade unions, the Church and political parties. The concepts of volunteerism and philanthropy covered the range of activities promoted by these institutions as a way of giving back to society. Cyprus’ accession to the EU created new opportunities and incentives for participation of a new form of civil society which had been developing in Cyprus since the late 1990s that was neither politically motivated nor philanthropic in its outlook on issues of societal concern. Increasingly active at the European level through networking and partnerships, Cypriot NGOs have started becoming more assertive in their demands for participation in decision-making processes.

In parallel, institutions of the state, the Planning Bureau in particular, started to see NGOs as potential implementing partners for policy both at home in abroad. European practice in the field of development cooperation – the delivery of financial support for countries in the developing ‘Global South’ – suggested that national agencies implement their policies in collaboration with local NGOs. CyprusAid, Cyprus’ development agency, has been implementing policy through ‘delegating’ funds through other EU member states such as Denmark and Ireland as well as through United Nations (UN) organisations like the World Food Programme. For collaboration to take place with local NGOs it was necessary for them to, amongst others, fulfil certain principles of financial transparency and accountability. Reform of the legal framework thus became a ‘wish’ for the Planning Bureau. “Not so much a wish, but also a need”, Taki responds.

On the initiative of the Planning Bureau funding was secured from the United Nations Development Programme in Cyprus (UNDP-ACT) and a reform process was launched. In April 2008 a report assessing Cyprus’ legal and regulatory framework was published by the European Centre for Not-for-Profit Law. The report, available online, included a series of recommendations for the relevant Ministries of the Interior and Finance calling especially for the adoption of legislation which would set out a “Public Benefit Status” category for NGOs. The NGO Working Group – formed in June 2008 and later renamed the NGO Initiative – was an effort on behalf of civil society to participate effectively in the public consultation process expected to be launched by the respective Ministries. “We had requested in our correspondence from the very beginning that our positions are taken into consideration in a future bill, and that we would like for there to be a consultation in line with standards set by the Council of Europe”, said Taki.

And there are serious shortcomings in the existing legislation. “The obstacles to registering an NGO under the Law on Associations and Foundations must be removed for the civil society sector to grow and become more professional”, says Nadia Karayianni, who represents the NGO Support Centre in the NGO Initiative. “Just recently we had the case of ACCEPT [an organisation working on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights], for which official registration effectively depended on permission from the Church because the law asks for the opinion of so-called relevant stakeholders. I think this case illustrates clearly the problems associated with this approach.”

Exogenous factors have also made it harder for NGOs to operate effectively. At present there are disparate provisions for state funding for NGOs, with limited operational support available. There are also severe limitations on the activities that are deemed as ‘profit-making’ for NGOs, which makes financial sustainability a key concern. So when the government imposed a 350 Euro tax levy on registered companies, including not-for-profits in response to the financial crisis, those managing and working for not-for-profits have had to dig into their pockets to keep their organisations afloat. The likelihood is that this fee would have been avoided had new legislation been in place sooner. Taki insists that the problem is one of definition. “When you start structuring a bill you have to put some basic concepts down on paper, and this is where the state creates definitions that are conflicting with those given by the sector itself”, says Taki. “Instead of entering into a real dialogue they are trying to update the legislative framework based on outdated concepts of what constitutes public benefit activity.”

Things could be set to move before the end of the year. According to information obtained by the Cyprus Community Media Centre (CCMC) the Ministry of Finance’s work on all aspects of the legislation reform, including feedback received on relevant aspects handled by the Inland Revenue Department, was concluded in May this year. The new legislation package will be sent to the Law Office of the Republic of Cyprus for legal check once the summer period is over.

However for the process to be successful the Ministry of the Interior must expedite its own procedures as well. The submission of the two draft bills for Parliament approval at the same time will make it easier for lawmakers to see the correlation between them. “We are not aware of what is happening at the Ministry”, Taki insists. “We have had unanswered correspondence since November 2010! However, we acknowledge that a number of position changes took place in the last few months, and, having sent a new package to the Minister on 22 June of all this correspondence, we are hopeful that a constructive dialogue will start with Ms Eleni Mavrou very soon.”

From outside looking in, there is no reason why the appropriate legislative reforms cannot take place before the end of 2012. Inter-ministerial communication will be key for the bills to reach Parliament, and this is where the Planning Bureau could play its final role in the process. As the holder of the Presidency of the Council of the EU, a positive conclusion by December 2012 would be further indication of Cyprus’ European transition.

Links of the Week: Communications for Development

The internet is an incredible source of information, and we are reading and learning every day about issues we care about. So we thought that we would share with you the 5 most interesting links from the world of media, and this week our focus is on media, or communications more generally, for development.

1) ‘Media and governance: what the academics say’

Direct from the blog of Panos London comes a post from Mary Myers, a communications for development consultant specialising in radio in Africa, who has been pondering the question of whether “a pluralistic media can make the government more accountable”. In her post, Myers grapples with the academic angle of answering “yes” to a question that in reality is quite difficult to measure, based on a report she published for the Center for International Media Assistance. Read on to find out which theorists made it onto ‘who’s who’ list of media for development gurus.

 

 

2) ‘Media, Communication and Development: Three Approaches’

Staying with the academic side of things, and a new book by Linje Manyozo from the Department for Media and Communications at the London School of Economics (LSE). According to Ørecomm: Centre for Communication and Glocal Change, the book “critically investigates the three approaches that have characterised most debates in the field of Media, Communications and Development since its emergence in the 1950s, namely, media development, media for development and stakeholder and community engagement”. Ørecomm is a bi-national research group that originated at Malmö University (MAH) and Roskilde University (RUC) for research in the field of Communication for Development, and focuses on the relations between media, communication and social change processes at both global and local levels.

 

3) Media in Fragile Environments: The IONA Methodology

Today CCMC had the pleasure in meeting Eran Fraenkel, a media consultant and trainer who was involved in the development of the United States Institute of Peace‘s Intended-Outcomes Needs Assessment, or IONA for short, methodology, which will help address the lack of clear definition of expected outcomes for media interventions in conflict situations. We will certainly be taking a close look at IONA to see how we can best integrate it within our current working framework, as well as for any future projects we will be implementing in the field of development communications.

 

 

4) Tailor-made planning for NGOs

The Panos London blog has certainly made for interesting reading this week! Bec Shaw Crompton, Panos’ head of programme operations has been blogging about an under-estimated skills-set: project management. Most of us would agree that not enough emphasis is placed on this element of the institutional development of NGOs. He recommends Project Management for Development Professionals (PMD-Pro), the first internationally accredited project management course for NGOs, created by John Cropper who was Oxfam’s head of management accountability and is now a director at LINGOS (Learning In NGOs). Next step is to find out how we can get ourselves accredited on PMD-Pro!

5) Communicating Across borders in the South Caucasus

Last but not least, an entry from Accord, an international review of peace initiatives, published by the London-based organisation Conciliation Resources. In their piece on the role of media in peacebuilding in the South Caucasus, Rachel Clogg and Jenny Norton take a look at Conciliation Resources’ work in the region from 2002 to the present, showing how their work, in conjunction with others organisations focusing on the role of the media, have helped overcome borders, both real and imagined, that have kept people apart. Needless to say we understand how valuable this kind of work is given that we are immersed in this field day in day out. Let’s hope we can have the same degree of success, and perhaps at some point in the future we can work with Conciliation Resources in pursuit of what are obviously common goals.

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