Jamaica 8th most free country in world for press

I have meant to write about this for several days, but some other posts got in the way. Jamaica can be proud of the fact that it ranks eighth in press freedom by Reporters Without Borders. This is up two spots from last year. Part of the criteria includes the amount of media workers killed in the last year, and Jamaica had none. Unfortunately, it is still not safe in many other countries. Witness the killing of the journalist who investigated the Panama Papers.

From Reporters Without Borders’ web site:

Jamaica ranks among the countries that most respect freedom of information. The very occasional physical attacks on journalists must be offset against this, but no serious act of violence or threat to media freedom has been reported since February 2009, a month that saw two cases of abuse of authority by the Kingston police. The law decriminalizing defamation passed by the house of representatives in 2013 was a step in the right direction.

From my own experience, I can say that reporters in this country do enjoy a large measure of freedom to conduct their activities (I only have Canada and the US to compare to). What stymies investigative journalism, as I have talked a lot about, is the bureaucratic inertia, partisanship and a lack of resources.


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