The World Forum of Free Media (WFFM) was invited to Montreal at the same time as the World Social Forum (WSF), bringing together several hundred participants from all over the world. Organized for the first time in a northern country, the WSF suffered from the Canadian government’s security policies: 70% of the participants from the south were refused visas, so the 2016 edition was mainly “white” and “rich”. This was not the case of the Free Media Forum, where journalists and communication activists came from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Honduras, the USA, Palestine, Mexico, India, Brazil, and Morocco, and even the First Nations of Canada reflected on and debated the way information and technologies can support political and social struggles. In a global context of increasing extremism and populism, there was also the question of the way free media confronts hate speech. Over 75 activities were proposed in the call for participants to various organizations across the world, of which around sixty were taken up. Over two days (8 and 9 August) at McGill University, we estimate that around 150 people participated in this 5th edition. To see the different debates, you can go to the WFFM website:
Live streaming of the WFFM : http://www.fmml.net/spip.php?article185
Review of the first day : http://www.fmml.net/spip.php?article186
A WFFM volunteer group (Bia Barbosa, Stéphane Couture and Erika Campelo) will be compiling further material on the Montreal edition (text, audio and video).
In the meantime, we would like to give continuity to the process as was decided in the three activities dedicated to the future of the WFFM: the self-managed activity on “perspectives”, the assembly on convergence (both taking place on Friday 12 August) and the Agora of Initiatives of the WSF (Saturday 13 August). We propose that you therefore participate actively in the follow-up of the forum in a horizontal, participatory, multicultural and multilingual spirit.
The new discussion list will be an important debate tool (the WFFM can provide some tools) and we propose that you work in your working groups to better progress in each issue. Each group must:
We ask that you choose from the eight themes decided at the WFFM/WSF below. Once the previously announced conditions are met, we suggest that a specific discussion list be registered in the working group.
1) Diffusion of the free media world charter: the WFFM needs to have more opportunities to meet, to promote the charter based on meetings, seminars, local, regional and thematic forums, etc. We have 4-7 principal proposals, namely:
2) Mapping of media conglomerates and free media
3) Campaign in the WSF for the use of free media
4) Working group for the protection of journalists
5) Campaign to denounce the media in the coup d’état in Brazil and in Latin America
6) Campaign for IGF Internet Governance 2016
7) Strategies/Future of the WFFM
8) Decolonization of communication
9) Promotion of open source software (especially with the De-google-ify Internet Campaign)
Are you interested in or a candidate for taking part in a working group? Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We also propose a conference call on Thursday, 10 November, 2016 at 2.30 pm GMT to implement the groups.
Solidarity, and see you very soon,
The WFFM team
the caravan of radio and gender
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