Khabarnegaran.info-Niki Azad: Local journalist Mahdieh Amiri speaks of the hardships of practicing journalism in the southern Iranian province of Bushehr. Amiri has been working as a journalist in Bushehr for years. Since 2007, she has been the editor-in-chief of a few local websites, biweekly and quarterly magazines. She is now the editor-in-chief of hamooniran.com website and Ava-ye Dashtestan biweekly.
A story of Hasan Rohani’s state first Media Fair26 November 2014
Translated by: Hana Jam
Khabarnegaran.info – Saba Etemad:
At its first days, Media Fair was quiet and it seemed that there were fewer people comparing to the previous years. A fair that was holding for the first time during Rohani’s state and yet with delay.
During last days of Aban (November) the 20th press fair have been held for a week in Tehran’s Mosalla. There were 20 booths for news agencies which all are either dependent to the state or government. Most of the booth sharing goes to the ones depended to IRGC (Iran’s Revolutionary Guards). They were mostly in the main Corridor and all have bigger booths comparing the independent ones which were in sideways or in the corners.
The first press fair in 11th state began working with this motto “media, responsible freedom” .according to the statistics from fair’s news stand,440 media has registered for getting a booth in the Tehran’s Mosalla in which the ones with “education and Specialization” theme got more share with 80 stalls. The combination we saw in this year’s fair, showed how low is press activities in Iran. 6-thousand publications have permits in Iran but only 38 newspapers and 24 press institutes participated this year.
An unforgettable event for IRGC’s news agencies
In second day of the fair, there were still booths which needed more preparation. Visitors asked the address of the booths they wanted to visit from people because there were no maps for direction. Although there were two information booths in the main corridor, but finding stalls without maps were rather difficult and timing. Director of one of the booths criticized this situation and said such problems are the result of mismanagement and weakness in informing system of deputy of culture ministry.
In Tasnim newsagency booth which is an IRGC dependent organization there was a rather huge population. There was a meeting called: a look into jurisdictional dimensions of 88th Fetneh (2009 election incidents which is called Fetneh in Iran) at the same time, a middle age man in suits who has a typed paper in one hand shouted: “don’t forget to damn the Fetneh” one of the visitors said : “ it’s been a long time since 2009 election incidents , why they didn’t get over this matter ?they still call it Fetneh and do meetings about it. It seems the problem hasn’t been solved in their heads” another one nodded and said:” 2009 election incident is still on for IRGC’s news agencies, in every booth you go, you can see hate slogans written about it on the walls” Fars news agency is another IRGC’s dependent media. This agency has a much bigger booth comparing to the others. There were chairs in different parts of the booth and there were everyday meetings. Meetings not that professional and more with special massages. In a corner of the booth there were a couple of books in a table. One of the books is called “Wanderlust of secularism” and written beneath the title is this sentence:” Decoding life and repertoire of Seyed Mohammad Khatami”
Another book introduced by Fars news agency which is published by them as well is called:” Techniques and procedures of the America Psychological Operations Command Center” and another one is called: “an untold story of a nuclear Iran”. But even in this huge booth on the second day of the fair you see no visitors.
There were also people in the corridors, walking and telling women to fix their Hijab. One of the journalists said there was a conflict between a woman and one of these guys. Police interfered to end the problem.
A booth like a flight agency
Afkar newspaper booths was more like a flight agency than a newspaper. The ones in the booth who called themselves journalists were all dressed in black mantos with golden fringes and matching scarves. A young girl dressed in one of those uniforms like flight agencies clerks said: “Afkar newspaper issues 1200 copies a day and is totally dependent”
Just a little over there was the ISNA news agency decorated in its regular blue color .two huge picture of the journalists who lost their lives during duty were hanged at the entrance of the booth. A big picture belong to Ismael Emrani and another to Hasan Gharib.
Donyaye Eghtesad (world of Economy) newspaper has a booth with the motto of “Donyaye Eghtesad gives you the power of foreseeing”. An English version of the paper also can be seen and there’s a different section introducing the English version. This booth is also empty, just like the others. IMNA news agency which has dependency to Isfahan Municipality introduces itself with a different decoration and colored light bulbs. This agency is currently located in Isfahan. Director of the booth comments with an Isfahany accent: “we don’t cover Isfahan news solely, you can see different news, stories and photos in our website.”
Mahmood AhmadiNejad’s fans have a booth called “HOMA Media Complex”. They have a life size photo of the former president. HOMA here is the initials for “AhmadiNejad’s Fans” in Farsi. At this booth there are some fans and also former colleagues of the former president.
In right corridors sides of the main, there were local news agencies from different provinces. They were happy with the spot they got this year. Though student agencies were at the end of the corridor, right across to them and they were not satisfied with their place.
In the 20th fair, 38 newspapers, 20 news agencies, 116 educational media, 4 press associations, 63 political-economic media,70 public and family publications , 8 non-Persian media, 45 cultural media , 10 kids and teenagers media, 24 media institutions, 67 local publications and 13 sport press were participated. There were also foreign agencies which has bases in Iran.
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