Stop hate speech

Proposed by the Syndicat national des journalistes CGT (SNJ-CGT)

The World Congress of the International Federation of Journalists, meeting in Angers from June 7th – 10th 2016,

bearing in mind the worrying rise of populism, especially in Europe where authorities – in Turkey, Poland and Hungary, i.a. – challenge the press freedom, threaten the public service existence and independence, imprison or kill journalists, apply censorship;

noting that warmongering choices of specific governments induce hawkish statements in the media increasingly concentrated in an handful of industrial corporations close to ruling authorities;

observing that during international crises – like the migrant crisis – hate speech used by populist parties and some States permeates the media and has a negative ripple effect on the profession;

cognizant that journalists under a broad range of different types of pressure and the staff cuts, the precariousness of their work, the conflictive or critical situations they are subject to, practise self-censorship;

being aware that under the pressure of increasing production speed induced by the media sacrosanct principle of free competition, journalists have a tendency to becoming tools of propaganda, entailing immoderation and excesses, challenging the quality of information provided to the public;

Congress proposes that:

  1. IFJ Executive Committee appeals to journalists urging them to abide by the professional principles of the Munich Declaration, to turn down sensationalism, competition laws, self-censorship, sweeping analyses;
  2. IFJ denounces on the Council of Europe’s Platform, with the United Nations, UNESCO States that harm the quality of information by supporting hate speech and their citizens’ disinformation encouraging thereby the dissemination of populist ideas.