BERLIN – Journalists are supposed to be observers and not interest groups in the events they cover, regardless of whether they work in a small town in Eastern Europe or the White House. But when journalists all over the world became target, many wondered at what moment it was just right for us to ride the pen and talk – and they came up with very different conclusions.
In Germany, a group of regional journalists decided that this item came in May, when the extreme right-wing party alternative for Germany (AfD) announced at a press conference that a journalist with the best sales tabloid Bild could not ask the question during the event. The rapporteur, who was elected from the press briefing meeting, Michael Sauerbier, raised critical questions during the previous press conference about alleged links between the AfD official and the right-wing extremist group.
It was not the first time that the rapporteurs excluded AfD, but with new attacks and sharp rhetoric, all the journalists in the room immediately agreed on what to do. They left the room; The press conference was canceled.
If any of those present at the time were watching the exchange of tests between President Trump and the CN House correspondent Jim Acosta on Wednesday, they may have had some distortions in that month.
At a midterm press conference Wednesday, Acosta asked whether Trump "demonized immigrants" by calling the trailer of the Central American migrants an "invasion". When the White House tried to take back the microphone, Acosta responded by raising her hand.
"Excuse me, ma'am," he told the woman.
Trump's response was less subtle. "CNN should be ashamed because you are doing them, you're a rude, horrible person, you should not work for CNN. You're a very rude person," Trump said to Acosta. Trump has been thinking about the possibility of withdrawing the credentials of journalists for a long time. "Why do we work so hard at working with the media when it's corrupted? Drop your credentials?" He asked on Twitter in May.
And on Wednesday, the White House first faced these threats when it temporarily suspended letters of credit for journalists in the past.
In other countries where extremist parties openly threaten democratic principles or journalists are afraid of their lives, Acosta has celebrated on a grand scale on Thursday morning. His battle hearing by the president earned him social media lovers in India, for example, where some praised his readiness to take over the chief commander.
One user created a video clip compared to the Acosta issues with the footage of the event in 2015, when Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosted a holiday event for journalists – and they grabbed him for self-esteem. Modi has not yet organized a press conference on which journalists could freely ask questions during his entire term of office.
Foreign journalists were not alone in support of Acosta. At a press conference on Wednesday, which was at a press conference on Sunday, journalist Trump immediately called for a defense of his colleague. But should US correspondents leave the path of their foreign counterparts and boycott information meetings?
The line for such a measure is relatively high abroad. In one case, foreign journalists went to the Israeli press conference last year with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull after the guards ordered the search for a photographer of the European press agency. He later described the incident as "unnecessary and humiliating" by a foreign press association, and the scale of that was embarrassing the Israeli government.
It seems that even in the case of the German AfD incident, there was an impact. Senior party officials recently had a round table with leading German editors aimed at encouraging a more moderate dialogue, even though "false news" is not being destroyed from the streets.
AfD and Trump are, of course, difficult to compare. Trump sometimes worked with the media and at other times he found himself on them. He threatened to sue the sellers, but until now he has not followed. AfD is a counterparty with limited influence.
When then – USA. Press Secretary Sean Spicer excluded several news organizations from the news briefing in February, but called conservative publications to join, only a few media decided to boycott the event. The reasons for avoiding the boycott of reporting were varied: some argued that further coverage of the administration was more important than the case. Other, more polarized news was welcomed.
By contrast, Germany has a more moderate media landscape in which far or left or right publications and networks have so far gained little adhesion. German journalists often issue statements through joint umbrella associations when they fear the violation of the freedom of the press, regardless of their editorial positions.
In response to the May incident, one such association issued a clear directive to its members: "We ask all our members to attend AfD events if all journalists have the right to ask questions."
Joanna Slater in New Delhi contributed to this report. Parts of this publication were first published on May 10, 2018.
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