On July 31, Zimbabweans took part in the first presidential election in five years, and the intense political battle was played out across the country’s airwaves.
The Zimbawean Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC), the country’s only domestic TV channel, was accused of backing incumbent President Robert Mugabe throughout the campaign, while dismissing the opposition counter-narrative that the vote was a sham.
Media censorship was a constant feature and so critical coverage came from Zimbabwe’s growing network of citizen journalists, and from across the border via a new TV channel based in South Africa.
Talking us through the story this week is Caesar Zvayi, a senior editor at The Herald; Bright Matonga, the former deputy communication minister; Alex Bell from SW Radio Africa; Wilf Mbanga, the editor of The Zimbawean; and Themba Hove from 1st TV.
This week’s Newsbytes: The verdict is in on the Bradley Manning trial and he has been found guilty on all but one charge, aiding the enemy; Wikileaks founder Julian Assange reacts to the case and still finds time to launch his Australian political career; and the New York Times defends itself after an interview with President Barack Obama – his first in three years – is criticised for being too soft.
We have been tracking the media story in Turkey for some time now and this week we take an even closer look with a long-form interview with one of the country’s most critical journalists Yavuz Bayder. Baydar had been a columnist on media ethics for Sabah newspaper since 2004, but after the Gezi Park protests kicked off in May, his employers found his criticism too hot to handle. It was after another scathing opinion piece in the New York Times last month that Bayder lost his job. In the second half of the show we sit down with the veteran journalist.
Most of you will be familiar with Global Positioning System – or a GPS – in cars these days and have probably grown accustomed to taking directions from them. But what if the GPS started getting a little too over-familiar? How long would it take you to realise that it was just a prank? The team at CollegeHumor.com put this to the test in New York City. With more than 2.2 million hits online, The GPS Prank is our Web Video of the Week.
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