AJE winter seminar 2022: Giving ‘emotional flak jackets’ to journalism students

This event was held on January 12 2022

The world has become a more dangerous place for journalists and media workers to do their jobs.

Thousands of journalists have been killed in the course of their work while most of their killers go unpunished. Murder is not the only issue when it comes to silencing journalists: other methods include brutal physical attacks, kidnapping, arbitrary detention and imprisonment, torture, intimidation and harassment offline, and online in the form of hatred, rape and death threats, and misogynist attacks on female reporters.

Female journalists across the world and in the UK have been subjected to vicious online campaigns that aim to smear and destroy their reputations, bombard them with hate messages and with threats of sexual violence and threats to their families, designed to silence critical voices.

Many journalists leave the industry because of online abuse, which prevents them from doing their jobs. 

In light of this, it is becoming increasingly important for journalism educators to prepare their students to take their physical and online safety, as well as their wellbeing very seriously.

It is vital to consider how we teach young and future journalists skills that will serve them in their future careers and ultimately help to protect their lives and wellbeing.  This event is a step in this direction and a valuable opportunity for collaboration between journalism educators, journalists, organisations dedicated to their safety and protection, and the government. 

The event will include testimonies from journalists who have experienced abuse and harassment, representatives from Reporters Without Borders, CPJ, Headlines, plus academic presentations.  

For more information Lada Price (lada.price@shu.ac.uk) and Jonny Greatrex (jonny.greatrex@ntu.ac.uk)

To register for this event:

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEkdeuqpjMpGdN9e6WbSSjJwTsDY6_k44_z

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Event running order: 

13.00 -14.00 Panel discussion on the importance of physical and online safety and safety mechanisms, challenges and recommendations to journalism educators. 

Panel chairs: Lada Price, Sheffield Hallam University and Jonny Greatrex, Nottingham Trent University

The panel will include: 

Rebecca Vincent, Human Rights Activist, Director of International Campaigns and UK Bureau Director of Reporters Without Borders

Guilherme Canela, Chief, Freedom of Expression and Safety of Journalists Section for UNESCO  

Rebecca Whittington, Reach plc. Online Safety Editor

Leona O’Neill, former Belfast Telegraph journalist and Lecturer

Abbey Maclure, journalist Yorkshire Evening Post

Gurjeet Nanrah, journalist Reach plc.

14.00-15.30 Academic papers showcasing challenges and best practices in relation to safety in journalism practice and education. 

Chair: Jenny Kean, Leeds Trinity University. 

Taking The Flak – Exposing the Ku Klux Klan for print and broadcast. (Ken Pratt, University of The West of Scotland)

Teaching emotion management for developing resilience in journalism. (Dr Maja Simunjak, Middlesex University)

Developing a new holistic humanitarian approach to training journalists in safety and resilience. (Colm Murphy, Ulster University

Defending yourself against online abuse: a model workshop for students. (Becky Gardiner, Goldsmiths, University of London)

A survival guide for journalism students working online: guidelines for navigating the challenges presented by cyberbullies. (Claire Wolfe, University of Worcester)

Storysmart: A new journalists’ safety tool from the NUJ (Tim Dawson, NUJ)

Q&A and close 

Photo by Ales Nesetril on Unsplash