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.
You’ll find here the english translation of some articles of khabarnegaran.info.
Khabarnegaran.info-Niki Azad: How is life for Iranian journalists after prison? Does their attitude toward their journalism – the profession that put them in jail – change? Are they more conservative than before? Or bolder?
Khabarnegaran – Niki Azad: He has been put in jail three times for his journalist writing, though he says that jail has not made him feel disappointed with the profession of journalism.
Khabarnegaran.info – Niki Azad: While most countries have strict laws against publishing photos of children in the media, Iran almost lacks any legislation over the issue.
Khabarnegaran.info – Niki Azad: For too long, Iranian journalists have been going to prison on charges of acting against national security. They are censured and censored by the government if they question, criticize or ask about the detail, for all these are deemed against national security.
Khabarnegaran.info –Niki Azad: Zanan Emrouz magazine, a highly-circulated Iranian monthly on women’s issues, was banned this month for publishing a special feature on ‘white marriage’. The Press Supervisory Committee, overseen by the Ministry of Islamic Culture, alleged that the feature story encouraged cohabitation.
Khabarnegaran.info – Sara Mohseni: After two weeks of Persian New Year holidays, Nowruz, Iranian newspapers started to come out with one of the freshest, most significant stories of the world politics – the successful initial nuclear talks between Iran and P5+1 in Lausanne.
Khabarnegaran.info – Babak Movahedi: The commemoration of veteran journalist, author and professor Hosseein Shahidi’s first anniversary was held in the Communication Faculty of Allameh Tabatabi University.
Khabarnegaran.info-Niki Azad: This time, Masoud Lavasani tells about his days of and after being in prison, his solitary confinement, and interrogations has impacted his life. He believes that journalists have to deal with a psychological crisis after jail. Lavasani used to write for Fars and Mehr news agencies, and a number of reformist and moderate dailies such as Hamshahri, Aftab Yazd, Etemad, Shargh, Hamshahri and Kargozaran.
Khabarnegaran.info-Niki Azad: Isfahan – an ancient city in central Iran – has a long tradition of newspapers. The first newspaper, Farhang, was published about 136 years ago on April 24, 1879 at the behest of Isfahan ruler Zell-e Sultan. Today, several newspapers, most notably Isfahan-e Ziba (owned by Isfahan Municipality) and Nasl-e Farda, and a few weekly magazines are published in Isfahan. Farid Salavati started his career as a journalist at Navid Isfahan weekly magazine, where his father was the managing director. He freelanced for Ettelaat, reformist Mardom Salari and later-banned Salam daily newspapers. He is now the Vice-President of Isfahan Journalists Association, one of the few remaining independent journalist associations in the country.
Khabarnegaran.info – Sogand Serafat: Iranian media are powerful enough to promote women’s education and close the gender gap and in a country ranked 139th out of 149 countries in the Global Gender Gap Index. Conversely, they can use their power to perpetuate reactionary views towards women and limit their role to mothering and managing the household. This was a sketch of the Women and Media Symposium, held on March 8, 2015, on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
Khabarnegaran.info –Sara Mohseni: How photographs should be published by the media has always been a subject of controversy. Decisions over whether a photo should be published often vary depending on state regulations, organizational bylaws, media policies and code of ethics, or simply the opinion of managers.
However, it seems as though Iranian media, particularly those inside the country, has no specific rules on publishing images. Editor-in-chiefs are often ones decide whether a photo should be published, contains graphic violence, or is a breach of privacy.
Khabarnegaran.info –Niki Azad: Iranian newspapers today run articles that can hardly be taken as stories or adverts. Advertorials – adverts disguised as news or feature stories –have become a growing concern for Iranian journalists and are seriously undermining their most valuable asset –the trust of their readership.
Khabarnegaran.info: Local Iranian weekly newspaper Seda-ye Azadi ran blank pages for its eleventh anniversary issue to protest massive unemployment in the western Province of Kermanshah. Seda-ye Azadi, literally meaning the Voice of Freedom, ran blank pages in its 418th issue published on January 19, 2015.
Khabarnegaran.info –Saba Etemad: The deadly terrorist attack on Paris headquarters of Charlie Hebdo weekly newspaper was given a relatively wide coverage by Iranian newspapers, though their reportage was different from world media. Some newspapers only published the news that 12 people were killed in an attack on the satirical newspaper, and some looked into the reasons behind the incident from their own political viewpoint without even denouncing the attack or expressing sympathy; as if it was an opportunity for right-wing media to censure the West for Islamophobia and accuse it of sponsoring terrorism.
Khabarnegaran.info – Niki Azad: Ehsan Mehrabi is an Iranian journalist who served a one-year prison term following the 2009 public unrests. In an exclusive interview with Khabarnegaran.info, he tells us about things that he would later give a second thought after the jail. He used to write for Etemed Melli, Hambastegi and Tose’e newspapers and now lives in Germany.
Khabarnegaran.info – Local press pays little attention to the demands of local people and are usually a pale imitation of national press.A study shows that about 80 to 85 percent of the content of local press is unoriginal, mostly covering national news and events.
Khabarnegaran.info – Mehrak Rahimian: A ghostwritten op-ed is an opinion piece written by a reporter that another person – typically an authority or expert on a specific subject – signs. Iranian newspapers have been now witnessing a dominant trend in a new kind of ghostwritten op-eds: ‘oral op-eds’. After doing a telephone interview with an expert or authority and asking about his opinion on a certain subject, a reporter then starts writing an op-ed under his name. The final product – a ghostwritten op-ed – will be ready in less than an hour.
Khabarnegaran.info –Sara Mohseni: IRIB (Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting), state monopoly on radio and television, has recently undergone managerial changes, with former IRGC (Iran’s Revolutionary Guards) member Ezzatollah Zarghami being replaced by new head Mohammad Sarafraz, who has 20 years of experience at the giant strategic broadcasting company.An investigation into the 36-year-old history of IRIB, a media organization always controversially controlled by direct intervention from both supreme leaders, however, reveals blatant violations of journalism ethics and standards since the very beginning of its establishment.
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).
Khabarnegaran.info –Niki Azad: Under totalitarian governments, there are a number of newspapers and news sites – and in a broader sense, media – that serve the interests of the dominant power and ideology and have no regard for professional credos or even human rights. Are they properly called media? Or would it be better to just identify them as state-run organizations that mask themselves as media?
Khabarnegaran.info –Sara Mohseni: As speculations grow about the new head of the state-run television and radio (Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting-IRIB), Iranian media are conjecturing about potential candidates to replace Ezzatollah Zarghami. However, less attention has been paid to the ten years of Zarghami’s office, who had formerly been a member of Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps.
Khabarnegaran.info – Saba Etemad:What is the most important and useful action that Rouhani’s state can do in Iran’s media era? Siamak Ghaderi, a journalist respond to this question quiet frank: ” you can’t have high expectations“ He talks about media situation, censorship, journalists security, pressure on journalists and media security comparing to what we had in Ahmadi Nejad tenure in this short interview. Siamak Ghaderi used to work for IRNA, he got out of prison just recently. He was arrested at his home in 2010 and spent 4 years of his sentence in Evin prison without a day off.
Khabarnegaran.info – Niki Azad: The new draft law on Media Framework Organization in Iran, prepared by the Ministry of Islamic Culture and Guidance a month ago, is still drawing plenty of criticism from media experts. Among the strongly critical voices is Ali Asghar Ramezanpour, former Deputy Islamic Culture Minister for Culture under Mohammad Khatami’s administration.
Khabarnegaran.info - Sara Mohseni: Only two months after his appointment as the Deputy Islamic Culture Minister for Press, Hossein Entezami announced the preparation of a Comprehensive Framework for Media on the state-run TV on November 4, 2013.Such a framework had been repeatedly hinted at in the statements given by Entezami. However, after nine months of speculation, Rasaneh.org (Media Planning and Research, affiliated to the Ministry of Islamic Culture) was finally updated last week with a post titled “Islamic Republic of Iran’s Media Framework Organization Draft Law.”
Khabarnegaran.info-Saba Etemad: It’s been a year since Hasan Rohani became president of Iran. His campaign slogan which was “prudence and hope” made many people including journalists hopeful. But during last year there was no news about freedom of journalists who are currently in jail and nor a promise about reopening of Association of Iranian Journalists. It’s still an alarming situation for journalists in Iran and it’s still one of the five major prisons for media workers in the world.
Khabarnegaran.info- Sougand Serafat :Iran’s maybe one of the few countries which has a day named after journalists and at the same time, one of the few ones which have the most journalists in prison. This paradox might be the reason why most of Iranian journalists don’t feel content with this day and don’t participate in its celebration.
Khabarnegaran.info- Saba Etemad: there was a time when it was said that Shiraz is one the important southern cities which has a very strong press environment. How much reality is in this? Mohammad Reza Abdollahi Nasab , a journalist in Shiraz answers our questions about press situation back there and from what he says , it seem that Shiraz’s journalism is experiencing a cold climax.
Khabarnegaran.info-Nikki Azad: how many successful journalists came out of journalist schools of Iran during recent years? Did the graduates of these universities made it to journalism world? Some believe that weakness in academic system in this major is the reason there is no successful journalist in this business. At the same time some others think that teaching theory of journalism isn’t enough and this profession needs a special talent as well, and for accepting the students, different angels need to be surveyed.
Khabarnegaran.info: Khosro Vali zadeh a veteran journalist and sport writer, is a graduate from School of media studies (Daneshkadeh Khabar). He started his career as a journalist in 1979 with Islamic republic News agency (Irna) and since then he’s been working in press, radio and many news agencies. He also wrote the first framework for Iran Varzeshi (Iran Sport) one of the first, all colored sport magazines in Iran. In June 2014 he made a speech about problems regarding sport writing in Tehran’s free journalists association.
Khabarnegaran.info – Saba Etemad: This Khordad (June 2014) 2 magazines "zanan Emrooz " and "Iran Farda " started their activities in press. less than a month after their start, radical fundamentalist Medias and also Iran’s national TV started to criticize and threat these papers. Which seems to be the beginning of an end for these papers and according to Ali Asghar Ramezanpour , journalist , they kill the papers at their birth so they won’t have to close a bunch suddenly !
Khabarnegaran.info- Majid Saeedi surveys photography’s problems in Iran’s press from a more general point of view which he calls "Press Weaknesses" in Iran. This Iranian Photographer is the winner of "Photo Evidence" in 2014 in America.
Khabarnegaran.info-There’s not much information about her in internet, only some of her close friends have memories with her. She is Soraya Sadr Danesh, a journalist who has started her career from Keyhan and had a special degree in women studies and social fields. She was editor of Women Issues in Keyhan before Islamic revolution. Like many others she had many problems back then, problem with the same type you’re facing in a chaotic and revolution stricken country.
Khabarnegaran.info-Nikki Azad : A time ago, the news of electing two known Iranian journalists as members of central council executive of "Kargozaran" party , restarted an argument which has been the topic of many discussion between Iranian journalist for many years ; journalists with dependency to political parties and journalists whom are independent from power.
Khabarnegaran.info-Sara Mohseni: “In the winter of 1979, I – like many other Iranian students studying abroad — returned to Iran to play my part in the long-awaited revolution. My bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering could barely help me find a job, because at the time, a fresh engineer graduate would be uncalled-for during the post-revolution industrial recession. But thanks to my good command of English, I managed to earn a living by working as an interpreter for foreign reporters and a translator for Kayhan International daily. A few years later, I accompanied my mother in her travel to the UK for medical treatment. There I found an opportunity to join BBC Persian as an English-to-Persian translator. After a while, I started to notice that I could have written the translated stuff myself, especially those relating to Iran. I developed my ability to write features and analyses in English, which then were ready to be translated into other languages, including Persian.”
"I, as the head of social affairs used to take part in the meetings of this council. Captions which related to women were usually received less votes. As a matter of fact, as soon as there was a mention of woman or women in of my proposed captions, most of the members of the council who were men would sneer at them."
Khabarnegaran.info : Hossein Zandi, a local journalist, shares his experience of working for the local press in Hamadan Province, Iran, and the widespread practice of “advertorials.”
Khabarnegaran.info-Sogand Serafat: Iranian journalists write much about short-term employment contracts, absence of labor unions, an irresponsible administration and press censorship. Ironically, they themselves are the victims of these violations at work. Even in state-owned press, many journalists work under a short-term employment contract. Many are not covered by social insurance for which employers are totally responsible. Many work for the lowest wages, sometimes below the minimum wage.
Khabarnegaran.info-Sogand Serafat:President Hassan Rouhani’s recent interview with state TV became controversial when it was not broadcast at the scheduled time due to a dispute between presidential media team and the state-owned television. Rouhani insisted on the presence of Sonia Pouryamin as another interviewer as well as IRIB reporter Mohammad Kazem Rouhaninejad. His request was however strongly turned down by IRIB Director Chief Ezzatollah Zarghami, who asserted that the President cannot choose the interviewer.
Khabarnegaran.info-Saba Etemaad:Veteran journalist Reza Marzban is no longer with us. He died at the age of 85 in Paris. For years, Marzban was a university professor of news writing and journalism, as well as editor-in-chief of Peygham-e Emrouz daily. He was also a unionist at the Writers & Journalists Syndicate.
Khabarnegaran.info- Sara Mohseni:Dr., Eng., Mr., Ms., Hujjat al-Islam val Moslemin, Ayatollah, His Excellency Grand Ayatollah, Supreme Leader, King of Kings, Prince and other titles and designations are widely seen in the news.
Khabarnegaran.info-Niki Azad:A cursory glance at Iranian newspapers would simply reveal their policy. Reformist newspapers are filled with photos of the newly elected President and his cabinet, often accompanied by admiring reports and articles. The number of their critical articles is seen as almost nil. Newspapers affiliated with conservative parties are, on the other hand, filled with hateful, slanderous reports.
Khabarnegaran.info-Saba Etemad: “Iranian journalists are paid meager salaries.” How true is this statement? In which types of media are meager wages more prevalent? Does affiliation of a media to a political party, whether reformists or conservatives, affect the salary level of journalists? Is a journalist with ten years of related working experience able to earn a living?
Khabarnegaran.info-Sara Mohseni:Does a clear border exist between free speech and insult in journalism? This question has been asked over and over again in different times and places, drawing different answers. Some believe that no limit shall be placed on the freedom of speech, which serves as a solid foundation for democracy. Others argue that certain limits must be set, otherwise the society would descend into chaos.
Khabarnegaran.info-Niki Azad: Has a new genre of news reporting gained popularity in modern Iranian journalism? One that shares the traits of both news story and feature, provides extra trivia and includes the opinion of reporter himself within the story.
Khabarnegaran.info:- After the disputed Iranian presidential election of 2009, a number of news websites were launched to specifically cover the news on the Green Movement’s street protests, intimidation against opposition groups, and imprisonment of political and human rights activists.
Khabarnegaran.info-Saba Etemad:-Should those journalists and media who supported the winning presidential candidate become his lawyer afterwards? To what extent are they entitled to defend the government and power institutions? How far has the recent presidential election overshadowed journalistic trends in Iran? Is it convincing to close eyes to certain reports on the grounds that it is not the right time to criticize the government?
Khabarnegaran.info: The draft Comprehensive System of Media Bill was revealed to the Iranian media during the last days of Ahmadinejad’s government. Hossein Entezami, on behalf of the Press Supervisory Commission, has called for media experts to offer their opinion. But why the draft Bill was introduced at such time when Ahmadinejad’s government had less than a month? Is it a political move?
Khabarnegaran.info:The draft Comprehensive System of Media Bill, revealed to local media recently, metes out harsher punishments compared with the current press law in force.
Khabarnegaran.info –Today’s daily review takes a look at how Iranian media and social networks reacted to Hasan Rouhani’s victory in the eleventh presidential election. Also, it takes a look at how a news article that could help to surmise the vote of Iranian Leader Ali Khamenei, published by a news agency affiliated with state security organizations, was deleted after a few minutes from their website.
Khabarnegaran.info –Iranian presidential candidates have led much of their campaign to cyberspace. With more than 53 online campaigns, Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf outdistances other candidates. Few are unable to remember the demagogic, extravagant advertising campaigns of Ghalibaf for the 2005 presidential election, including extra-large banners and high-quality advertising photos. His extravagance at the advertising campaigns had been censured by many state officials. Large posters of Ghalibaf in pilot cloths were hung in the main squares of big cities, struggling to win against humble posters of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, whose simplistic way of life was advertised.
Khabarnegaran.info – What to Saeed Jalili’s fan website have to say for this conservative presidential candidate? How do they run his campaigns? How do they want to impress voters? There various website writing about him, namelyHayat-e Tayebe (pious life), Hamaseh Siasi (political epic), Moghavemat va Ramz-e Pishraft (Resistance and Secret of Success) and Sadid Online (Righteous Online) write about his political believes specially prior to the election.
Khabarnegaran.info–The first televised debate among presidential hopefuls looked much like quiz shows, as they had to answer to IQ-type and multiple choices questions within a short period of time, stimulating short discussions about economic issues. The state-run TV broadcast the debate on Friday, May 31, at 4:00 pm local time with the participation of all eight approved candidates. The debate was meant to create the least possible controversy, but provoked humorous reactions in social networking and news websites.
Khabarnegaran.info -Today’s daily review, May 29, 2013, covers the main election highlights as published by the Iranian media: Highlights of the documentaries defaming the former two-time President Rafsanjani and incumbent President Ahmadinejad in the newspapers/TV debates and the host/Banned news websites during the past days/An image was published by Tabnak that underlines how IRIB exclusively supports principalist candidate Saeed Jalili
Khabarnegaran.info –The latest dramatic episode in Iran’s 11th presidential election happened last week when the two prominent nominees, former two-time President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and President Ahmadinejad’s close aide Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, were disqualified by the Guardian Council, provoking different reactions in the society. The protests against the disqualification of candidates were underreported in print media, while highlighted in online media.
Khabarnegaran.info – Are journalists and official media allowed to work for presidential election campaigns? Is it an internationally accepted trend before elections or is it just an Iranian trend? Khabarnegaran.info asked a number of journalists about their opinion on this subject. In less than a month to the election, presidential candidates have shaped their think tanks and their election campaigns. Mohammad-Bagher Ghalibaf had formed his think tank long time ago and even invited reformist journalists to his campaign. Mohammad-Reza Aref is another candidate that hired journalists to his campaign.
Khabarnegaran.info – How do Iranian journalists deal with journalism after they are released from prisons? How does imprisonment affect their views as journalists? Does it make them conservative or courageous? Do prisons change their perspectives as journalists? Khabarnegaran.info asked these questions from journalists who were recently released from prisons. Imprisonment of Iranian journalists has become repetitious news that leaves almost no one ignorant about it. In the last winter 17 journalists were arrested in a matter of a few days. Many of these journalists are imprisoned and interrogated under media silence.
Khabarnegaran.info –Today’s daily review, May 21, 2013, covers the main election highlights as published by the Iranian media: How did the Iranian media respond to the disqualification of former two-time President Rafsanjani and Mashayi, a close aide to Ahmadinejad? How did State TV and radio, IRIB, and Fars news agency, affiliated with the IRGC, react against reports broadcast by BBC Persian and VOA Persian? Approved presidential candidate Saeed Jalili is extensively brought into prominence by Fars news agency,
Khabarnegaran.info –Iran’s newspapers were generally more concerned with the upcoming presidential election this week (10-15 May), highlighting the two prominent presidential candidates, former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and incumbent-party nominee Esfandiar Rahim Mashayi. The three newspapers subject to this week’s analytical study (10-15 May) were reformist Shargh, conservative Resalat and pro-government Iran newspapers.
Khabarnegaran.info –Iranian journalists were invited to a seminar organized by the Ministry of Islamic culture and guidance last week to “discuss and debate the strategy of media for the election”. However, it resembled a monologue rather than a dialogue, where the government dictated the red lines that journalists must work within. The seminar is named “Heralds of Epic”, with a reference to Supreme Leader Khamenei’s naming of this year as “political and economic epic”. The first hours of the event pulls in a large crowd. It is difficult to find a place to sit, or even to stand.
Khabarnegaran.info – On the eve of the presidential election in Iran, media is struggling find out where it is standing, under a security observation or temporary open atmosphere? Can journalists cover criticisms against the government or should they still consider the truth about the ruling party a crime? The election will be held very soon and journalists still find their future vague. They do not know if they will be arrested in future for covering news about a certain presidential candidate; or they will be any newspapers left open after the election.
Khabarnegaran.info – Following the controversial presidential election in 2009 in Iran, the Committee for Protecting People’s Votes – formed by MirHosseinMousavi and MehdiKarroubi – initiated citizen-journalism after they asked the Iranian voters to take pictures and film videos by their mobile and send it to the committee. The move started after they doubted the Guardian Council’s effort to re-count the votes. Following the move, the Iran Telecommunication Company stopped the text and multimedia message services to stop them from sending the pictures or videos. Such footages have not been used for the next two months after the call for documentation of the violation of democracy.
Khabarnegaran.info –Journalism from behind the desk is often berated at first glance and seen as calamity by veteran journalists and academic professors, who believe that journalism means only when done out in the field. But is it always possible to report the subjects closely in the field? Are working conditions and news coverage the same for all reporters? Should one expect journalists to follow and report the news closely under repressive circumstances? In Iran, for years, the repressive sociopolitical circumstances had made it impossible for reporters to show up themselves and watch the subjects closely in the field.
Khabarnegaran.info –The centralization of media in the Iranian capital, Tehran, is an incontrovertible fact. As the role of provincial media is downplayed, news on minority groups and small cities are underreported and journalists residing in provincial areas are blatantly disregarded. “Iran is one of those countries whose media are excessively dependent on the capital. Therefore, news stories gathered from Tehran and other big cities are often highlighted.
Khabarnegaran.info –In the recent months we have witnessed arrest of many Iranian journalists across the country. Many weeklies and newspapers were closed down. While the circle of pressure become tighter by days, how can journalists keep themselves informed and make sure accurate information is circulated in the mainstream of media. How can the journalists find a channel to spread the censored news? Are there any relations between the rate of arrest and the journalists’ unawareness on working under suppression?
Khabarnegaran.info – Are Iranian journalists working inside the country satisfied with their wages? Are they covered by social security? Are they entitled to benefits such as mortgage loans and allowances? Is there a fund to support journalists? The answers to these questions are not alike for all journalists. In truth, the journalists working for state-run or government-owned media are not on a par with those working for private and independent media.
Khabarnegaran.info – How can journalists keep their title under suppressive circumstances? How can journalists cope with vulnerability under such condition and control the damage caused by dictatorship? The Iranian society has experienced such Guerilla lifestyle for longer than 50 years. Under such condition self-censorship appears in two shapes: positive-thinking self-censorship and denying self-censorship. Journalists, who adopt the denying self-censorship, mostly choose to be indifferent and silent about many issues in the society. Eventually such behavior leads to praising of dictatorship and autocracy. This is absolutely against the job description of a journalist. Journalists are supposed to raise people’s awareness and to improve life standards for their society.
Khabarnegaran.info – Apparently these days nothing but the news of death attract the attention of the Iranian public. Do arrests, political prisoners’ concerns, and hunger strike not attract people’s attention? The news of Iranian worker blogger SattarBeheshti’s death received much publicity. Should people die so that their effort would be appreciated? Should we blame the media or the society for such indifferent reaction to some subjects of the news?
Khabarnegaran.info – Iranian journalist Abdolreza Tajik is based in France. He is a winner of the Reporters without Borders’s 2010 press freedom award. He agreed with an interview with Khabarnegaran.info to elaborate how news coverage of disasters like hunger strikes, executions, death and legal sentences.
Khabarnegaran.info-There is news saying newspaper that were closed down before are to be opened again. This is very interesting news to those who know what it means to lose a job over a night because their newspaper was closed down by the government. They wonder if such reopening process equalled an open political environment or the censorship will continue in other forms.
Khabarnegaran.info-Imprisoned journalists, Jila Baniyaghoub, who has been in Tehran’s Evin prison since September to complete her one-year jail sentence has not yet been able to meet her spouse, Bahman Ahmadi-Amouee, another imprisoned journalist who is in Rajaie-shahr prison in Karaj, near Tehran.What follows is the full text of Jila’s letter which has been made available to the Kalameh news agency:
Khabarnegaran.info-Tehran’s Grand Prayer Grounds played host to the 19th International Exhibition of Press and News Agencies from October 28 to November 3. The exhibit served as a venue to various daily and periodical magazines and papers.However, the exhibit was not only a platform for media. A long queue in a corner of the Grand Payer Ground attracts my attention. The exhibit had been offering a special voucher.
Khabarnegaran.info-The Iranian capital Tehranserved as a venue to host the 6th International Digital Media Exhibition. Scheduled for October 7to 16, the fair hosted Iranian as well as international companies at the site of Tehran’s Grand Prayer Grounds to promote international and local media based on indigenous, national and Islamic culture.
Khabarnegaran.info-It has been two months since I last saw you; two months since tha last visit at Rajai Shahr prison when I looked at you from behind those iron bars and double pane windows.I forgot to tell you how hesitant and skeptical I was about attending that last visitation. I had even planned to turn myself in at Evin prison a few days earlier in order to avoid the arrival of Thursday, the visitation day at Rajai Shahr
Khabarnegaran.info-From the beginning of the interview she knows what she wants to say. “Supply and demand policies must be according to the current standards of demands.” Asieh Amini, journalist and winner of the Oxfam Novib / Pen Award in 2012, believes that journalism in Iran in in desperate need of research.
Khabarnegaran.info-It does not matter if you graduated from a media school or a medical school; newsroom fever attracts you to journalism. However, the fever does not guarantee a smooth career in this field. Interesting topics seem to cross redlines and many censoring policies seem to make your job more difficult than simple essay writing. Iranian journalists have to deal with serious issues to make it through writing a piece of news.
Khabarnegaran.info-The latest earthquake in Azerbaijan located in northwestern Iran left many dead and wounded. The financial burden of this earthquake was also devastating. However, this earthquake became the most controversial earthquake in the county because of its media coverage. The criticism to the weak news coverage of the earthquake was not limited to state-run media; independent journalists were also attacked too.
Khabarnegaran.info-Shargh Newspaper has been closed down on 27 September 2012 on the eve of an autumn day for publishing a cartoon. The cartoon was interpreted as an insulting cartoon and such an interpretation ended in the newspaper being closed down and more than 100 journalists and freelancer lose their jobs. The managing editor of the newspaper was arrested and the cartoonist was summon to Media and Culture Court.
Khabarnegaran.info-This is the first time that an exhibit is held especially for press with specialty in matters focused on families. The one-week exhibit started from 13th of September. However, the exhibit was not welcomed well in the capital city Tehran. The almost empty exhibit served as venues for 80 magazines in various areas from lifestyle and fashion to psychology. A massive number of the magazines focus on cooking.
Khabarnegaran.info-Will the newspapers in Iran survive another shock of newsprint price rise? How will Iranian journalists deal with such limited resources? Should they worry about another wave of unemployment?
Khabarnegaran.info-Iranian journalists might write under their real names but mostly they choose to write under a penname. Some even have numerous pennames. Basically, it is an odd question to ask the Iranian journalists if they have a penname.
Khabarnegaran.info-Having women in management is one of the key issues that must be studied closely. The number of women managers and women editors in chief could be a good topic to study. It is not really difficult to get into the details of the depressing share of women in media management in Iran.
Khabarnegaran.info-Iranian independent journalists are under extra pressure these days. Both employed and unemployed journalists, who live their lives in a journalistic theme, have always lived with the thought of newsrooms and newspapers in the back of their head.
Khabarnegaran.info-Censorship has gained a new weight and new meaning in recent weeks. Censorship has reached a point that aims to manipulate reports on people’s daily routines. Journalists believe that such policies would only leave people in disappointment and abuses their trust to the media. Censorship about inflation and price rise in the country are the latest redlines defined for journalists at economy desks.
Khabarnegaran.info-The organization ‘Reporters Without Borders’, based in Paris, publishes an annual report, ‘Press Freedom Index’, which measures ‘violation directly affecting journalists and netizens (including murders, imprisonment, physical attacks and threats) and news media (censorship, confiscation of newspaper issues, searches and harassment)’; the degree of impunity enjoyed by those responsible for these press freedom violations’; the level of self-censorship in each country and the ability of the media to investigate and criticize; financial pressure; the legal framework for the media ; the level of independence of the public media; and violations of the free flow of information on the Internet.
Khabarnegaran.info-Her first significant journalistic experience was an interview with Anwar Sadat, the then president of Egypt and it has been almost 40 years ago. Veteran journalists who had worked at Pars News Agency (now known as IRNA) remember Ozra Dejam very well. She met her husband “Mahmoud Mahjoub” at Pars News Agency. They initiated their own tiny newsroom and inspired their three daughters to enter this field. She tells us a few of her memories and stories from Pars News Agency.
Khabarnegaran.info-At the present condition we cannot judge any of these proposal laws impartially. However, one must remember that democratic laws are ratified under democratic conditions. Here we raise this question: “Is Iran experiencing a democratic condition so that we can expect a democratic law to be ratified in this country?”
Khabarnegaran.info-We initially heard that, on June 20th, the political prisoners at Evin’s section 350 (including my brother) held a memorial service in the prison yard for their former cell mate Hoda Saber who was martyred last year while on hunger strike. Halfway through the ceremony the special guards at the prison raided the ceremony and transferred a number of prisoners, including Bahman, to solitary confinement.
Khabarnegaran.info-Why isn’t news satire tolerated in Iranian media? Lately, this question has been raised quite often, especially since the news satire has been put on tight spots. News satire relies heavily on irony and deadpan humor and a permit to joke with politicians, powerful figures and the society. Recently the Morvarid Publication published the third collection of “Satirists of Today Iran”.
Khabarnegaran.info-Recently rumours had it that the journalism degree at master level at Allameh Tabatabai University was subsidized based on genders. If this one was a rumour, elimination of two majors from MA level of this university in the coming year is a fact. Public Relations and Journalism at MA level were removed from the list of new students’ options.
Khabarnegaran.info- Either call it charter or a book of law or even an ethical charter, whatever its name is; it has not been registered under the Iranian Press Regulation yet. There are various copies of its drafts, however, we cannot find a final version of it. Iran is one the few countries that does not enjoy any ethical press regulations.
Khabarnegaran.info-A young journalist who often signs the statements and petition says: "I do not find a logical connection between these two matters. How can we keep our silence when one of our colleagues is imprisoned? I have been reporting for a few years and I did my best to be unbiased. However, I am fully aware that we cannot be completely unbiased. Choosing a reformist newspaper over a conservative newspaper was the first step that I took walking away from pure impartiality. So I can say no one is perfectly unbiased.
Khabarnegaran.info-A woman journalizers working the Kayhan Newspaper recalls a story of herself which happened at least 17 years ago. She was a member of a team that was supposed to cover a high ranking Iranian official’s political assignment to a number of countries. For the first time women journalists asked their editors in chief why they could not go on assignments to cover international events.
Khabarnegaran.info-Independent journalists and critics of the Iranian government are suffering both from political pressure and also financial burden. Censorship, interrogation, imprisoning of independent journalists and closing newspapers, many journalists lost their job, they don’t have national health insurance, and even if they do they only have access to the minimum services.
Khabarnegaran.info-According to various professional regulations in the world, journalists are banned from receiving any gifts from governments. By the March 2012 – end of the Iranian calendar – the Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinjad’s gift to reporter made the headlines. This loud and noisy story started on 8 August 2011, which is Reporters Day in Iran. The Iranian president Ahmadinejad invited reporters to a building that was previous venue of the parliament. He hosted a meeting to mark the Reporters Day.
Khabarnegaran.info-Iranian female journalists have suffered from various types of discrimination since the Iran Revolution in 1979. Some of these discriminations were understated after the birth of reformist media. However, women still suffer from such judgments. Khabarnegaran.info plans to pinpoint a few of such cases of discrimination against women. This is our first editorial of these series:
Khabarnegaran.info-He is a lecturer at a university and teaches reporting. He says: “My name is Ghazizadeh. I have started journalism as my career in 1969. It is over 40 years that I joined the field of media. However, my retirement and pension plans show only 17 years of works. The reason why I could not continue my retirement planning is that all those newspapers that sponsored me for my retirement planning are closed down now.
Khabarnegaran.info--Can a journalist be both a political activist and a social activist? Does not political and social involvement affect the journalist’s impartiality? How can the journalist deal with his social and professional responsibility? How are journalists under dictatorship categorised? What is the true story behind the professional journalism? Khabarnegaran.info has interviewed Omid Memarian, MA graduate of UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism to find the answer to some of these questions.
khabarnegaran.info-A few reporters are working at a limited number of independent newspapers in the country, who suffer serious problem in producing and sending their reports and news. How do these independent journalist survive the suffocating atmosphere? How do they manage to continue their job under censoring eyes of the government? Many of critics of such situation are wondering if it is the time to go on a strike and stop writing under such tight censorship.
khabarnegaran.info-Japanese’s journalists usually refer to a famous saying that "regulated media does not need press law" and it is the main principle in Japan. That is the reason why every journalist has his own regulation instead of a generic press law generalised to all. The regulations, which are set up by journalists, are able to prevent an article from being published or introduce a new professionally ethical framework. It is a new experience that has never been practiced in Iran. Here we can raise a question; will journalist experience a day that they decide for their media or will it always be a government poking its nose into media job?
Khabarnegaran.info-Minou Badiyi is a veteran Iranian journalist who began his career as a journalist with the Kayhan Newspaper in the year 1977. She has continued working with the renowned Persian newspaper for 22 years. After 23rd of May 1997, the date President Mohammad Khatami set to win a landslide victory in the 1997 presidential election, Badiyi joined the a reformist newspapers and news websites; namely, Neshat Newspaper, Asr-e Azadegan Newspaper and Economic News.
The Number of Iranian Journalists Arrested Increases; Those Already Behind Bars Abused, Facing Severe Restrictions
Khabarnegaran info- The arrest of Iranian journalists by security forces continues while those behind bars at Evin Prison in Tehran and Rajai Shahr prison in Karaj continue to face severe restrictions without the ability to take advantage of furlough.
Khabarnegaran.info-Censorship and self-censorship has always existed in Iran press news, in Hossein Tofiq’s diaries, we can find the affect of censorship during 50 years of publishing the weekly humours "Tofiq". He said “every single week, the central government has sent some officers who broke in to the building for checking news before printing".
Bahman Ahmadi-Amouee’s letter to parliament deputies about the articles in which he exposed financial corruption in Ahmadinejad’s administration
Khabarnegaran- info-Bahman Ahmadi-Amouee, critical journalist and author of two economics books, The Political Economy of the Islamic Republic and How the Islamic Republic’s Men Became Technocrats, was arrested during the unrest after the 2009 presidential elections and has been held in Evin prison since then. The most important accusations against Mr Ahmadi-Amouee are based on articles in which he had criticized the Ahmadinejad administration’s economic performance and financial corruption in some of the institutions affiliated with it.
Khabarnegaran.info-"The Media is capable of shaping our mindset and even change our opinion or confirm and validate our idea about a specific topic," Shahla Ezazi, a professor of sociology, lectured the Iranian Sociological Association in Tehran University. The lecture was about the imaginary or real reflection of social events in media.
Khabarnegaran.info-He is a master of journalism and he is well known among his fellow journalists for his choice of headlines. I am talking about Hossein Ghandi. They say he has become ill with Alzheimer’s; the same master of journalism that loved his career passionately and transferred his knowledge to students at universities. He believed from the bottom of his heart that there is a sunrise after each sunset.
Khabarnegaran.info-Another autumn has come and the 18th edition of Tehran International Exhibition of the Press and News Agencies was held. A veteran journalist, who has written for a highly circulated newspaper of Hamshahri, is finding the exhibit not as fruitful as previous editions. He says in a cold voice: “every year we are left with regret of last year’s lost chance.”
khabarnegaran.info-The 18th edition of Tehran International Exhibition of the Press and News Agencies had been held in the Iranian capital Tehran under three main mottos of “economic jihad, promoting quality, and media refinement. The exhibit, which was labelled as an international venue hosting several media and news agencies from across the world, served as a good arena to observe the potentials and capacities of the national news agencies and press as wel
khabarnegaran.info-Literature was his favourite course at school. He is quoted as saying: “I counted the days down until it was the day we had literature at school again.” It was the teacher of the same course that discovered his talent for journalism and later he was selected as the best journalist at event desk in Iran. Mohammad Bolouri, 75, never forgets his passion and his love for his profession, journalism. He states: “you have to be passionately in love with journalism. Sometimes I call it agony in the garden but if you are a lover, you must be patient.”
khabarnegaran.info:-In hindsight, we can raise some questions. Why don’t the employers solve these issues? Don’t the journalists talk about their problems to their employers? Are employers so ignorant that they close their eyes on these shortcomings? Are they willing to clear these flaws in the service? A journalist states: “sometimes employers try to solve some issues and make the workplace better for their staff. However, there are situations that the employers told us straight out that we have to deal with the shortcomings. If not, we had to quit our job.”
khabarnegaran.info:Nowadays, issues encountered by Iranian female journalists are not apart from the ones facing other journalists, however, their issues are intertwined and our journalism is full of problems and ill-being."
khabarnegaran.info:-Fairness, justice, neutrality, balance, impartiality, and unbiased reporting are terms that journalists are familiar with. However, to what extent can journalists use their own ideas and analysis in their reports? Does the personal analysis of a reporter distance the report from fair and unbiased news coverage? Can journalists act as photojournalists and only serve the role of witnesses who record events as they unfold? May journalists view themselves only as postmen who deliver the news package to the reader’s house doors?
khabarnegaran.info::For some time, I had been wondering why the Iranian security and judicial authorities have imprisoned my spouse, Bahman(2), and several hundred other political prisoners, and how much of the goal that they follow through their imprisonment has been reached. A few days ago, a memory came back to me and told me not to think too much about their aim or try to understand it.
khabarnegaran.info:-I think talking about local journalism is not the right topic at all while all the news are in Tehran and also journalists in other cities have no rights, so that is why I think there is no point to discuss about local journalism.’’ one of the journalists in Azerbaijan said that about the situation of journalism in other cities in Iran. She added she didn’t know to talk about which part of the problems regards local journalism because she believed that it is not technically existed these days.
khabarnegaran.info:-Imprisonment of journalists in the recent years has hardly been a rare phenomenon and there has been plenty of coverage in the media of detention of journalists. This has especially been the case over the past two years, because after the disputed presidential election of 2009, the imprisonment of the journalists has become practically routine. Indeed, these days there are more journalists being detained than politicians.
khabarnegaran .info-Nowadays Iranian journalists live under the most severe pressure and worst situation. Everyday they face dangers by the government and their writings if even few may cause imprisonment for them for many years. To earn their livings,many journalists encounter a lot of problems. The number of newspaper agencies where they can work are so few that not all of them can find empty places for job. These newspapers which are mostly private pay them irregularly and very low salaries. In Iran unemployment , these days , is the most difficult challenge in life faced by journalists .
Journalist Jila Baniyaghoub Summoned to Court for the 5th Time Since the 2009 Presidential Elections
Khabarnegaran.info -September 6th, 2011 - [Jaras] - Iranian journalist Jila Baniyaghoub, winner of the Courage in Journalism Award in 2009 and the Freedom of Expression Award from Reporters Without Borders in 2010, was summoned to court yesterday for the 5th time since the 2009 presidential elections.
Khabarnegaran.info-Bahman however, was one of the many who was confined to a solitary cell in ward 240, where he couldn’t even stretch out his legs, and in that unbearable heat in summer of 2009. Yet, when asked about that experience, he again smiles and shakes his head… “Solitary confinement provides odd and strange moments – a certain void – wherein you can take stock of your life and every moment of it. You actually realize just how incredibly invaluable your loved ones are to you and how beautiful life can be…”
14 Incarcerated Journalists-The Islamic Republic is Responsible for the Lives & Well Being of the Leaders of the Green Movement
Khabarnegaran.info-Monday August 8th, 2011 - [Kaleme] - On the occasion of Reporter’s Day (August 8th), fourteen incarcerated journalists at Evin and Rajai Shahr prison issued a statement addressed to the Iranian nation. The signatories condemned the arrest, incarceration, oppression and censorship of journalist and the independent media outlets. In addition, they once again warned the Islamic Republic of Iran that they are responsible for the lives and well being of the leaders of the Green movement and their spouses Zahra Rahnavard and Fatemeh Karroubi, and all political and social activists behind bars.
khabarnegaran.info-Saeed Matinpour, an Azerbaijani journalist and civil activist, known for his defense of the right to an education in his native Turkish language. He is sentenced to 8 years in prison. He was charged with “Propagating against the state” and “Foreign connections” by Judge Salevati who had reviewed most of the 108 cases of journalists and activists arrested in the aftermath of 2009 elections, and handed down heavy fines and long prison sentences, without due process. Matinpour is currently serving the 2nd year of his prison term most of which has been spent in solitary confinement,under torture and a resulting heart condition.
Khabarnegaran.info- He always said there are three things in life that he was passionate about: “News, Journalism and Studying”. And it was his passion that finally drove this journalist to prison.Siamak Ghaderi, the 43 year-old blogger and journalist has been locked up in prison since July of 2010 without a single day of furlough.
Khabarnegaran.info-About the final shutdown of the magazine, Toulaaii says: “During the last 3 years of our publication, we received multiple warnings from the Ministry of Guidance. The overall political climate after the first of year of Ahmadinejad’s presidency, began spiraling down a tighter space, until the day when publishing a poem by Mrs. Simin Behbahani was used an excuse to shut us down.
Khabarnegaran.info-“My darling Bahman, Why did they release me and not you? I feel a great sense of guilt. I ask myself if I made mistakes in my answers during the interrogations. Maybe I showed weakness! Perhaps, I displayed signs of remorse for the actions I had committed prior to my arrest… But, you are strong and tolerant. I am proud of all these characters traits of yours…”
The Heart Breaking Story of Mohammad Davari, Incarcerated Journalist, Teacher & Editor of Saham News
Khabarnegaran.info-He is both ajournalist and a teacher. Though his name appears under every statement published from Evin and he has always participated in every hunger strike, protesting the existing conditions, very few people recognized his name and he is seldom written about. His name is Mohammad Davari, incarcerated political prisoner and former editor of Saham News, currently behind bars at Evin’s Ward 350. On rare occasion we have read about his mother’s anguish as a result of having no news of her son and being so far from him through online media outlets.
Khabarnegaran.info-‘Bahman,’ I say, ‘I’ve heard the button is there so the conversations between the prisoners and their relatives could be monitored.’‘I don’t know if that’s true’, you say, ‘but if it is, I wish they could buy a more sophisticated piece equipment so we would not have to keep this button pressed throughout the visit.’bahman, Monday was the third day of our hunger strike.
Khabarnegaran. info-In the absence of a free and independent media and widespread censorship, the questioned raised, is how journalists can effectively inform the public at large regarding current affairs. As a result of the systematic, extensive shutdown of daily newspapers, many reporters with access to accurate news and information had no means of disseminating the news amongst Iranian citizens.This issue was of such vital importance in the daily lives of so many ordinary citizens that those with limited access to free and independent media, pondered upon creative ways to spread important information with other members of society with little to no direct access to independent media outlets.
Khabarnegaran. info-With the exception of Emadeddin Baghi who was released from prison two days ago, the incarcerated journalists at Evin prison, continue their hunger strike. Four journalists whose only crime was writing and criticizing, have each spent months behind bars and now they are participating in a hunger strike protesting the killing of Haleh Sahabi and their prison mate Hoda Saber, a journalist and social activist who eventually died in a hospital as a result of prison officials ignoring the complications arising from his hunger strike.
Khabarnegaran. info-« The declaration of the journalists’ duties and rights » constitutes the reference text which fixes the main principles of the journalistic profession’s ethics. This declaration which is also named the journalist’s charter was adopted in 1971 in Munich, by the journalistic federation’s representatives from the European Union, Switzerland and Austria, as well as from diverse international organizations.
Khabarnegaran. info-Internet access is a human right, according to a United Nations report released on Friday.La Rue said in his report that access to the Internet is particularly important during times of political unrest, as demonstrated by the recent "Arab Spring" uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, among other countries.