06:04 AM

The News Is Not Free: First Reporter Killed In 2014


Above, a family holds a photo of one of 70 journalists killed in 2013. Source CPJ

The Press Gazette reported:

Pakistan journalist Shan Odhor has become the first media worker to die in 2014 because of his work, the International federation of Journalists (IFJ) said today.

According to reports, Odhor, a senior reporter for the Aaab Tak News Channel, was shot by unidentified assailants on his way home on Tuesday, New year's Eve.

He was taken to hospital with critical injuries and died in the early hours of New Year's Day.

 The Committee to Protect Journalists said that there were 70 journalists killed in targeted attacks last year.

The news is not free even though it seems that way. Reporters around the world risk their lives for small wages and have to be courageous in the face of extreme violence that is aimed at silencing their work. 

The greatest failure of the Internet is that we don't have a good mechanism for rewarding good journalism. Google and the others, have sucked all the value out of online advertising and micro payments don't work. It's a serious issue and does great harm to society because well funded special interest groups dominate the media and in the currency of ideas and values. 

The job of reporters is to help people and communities tell their stories so that we won't seem so strange to each other, and to watch for good governance and good business behavior. As Google, Facebook, and other large platforms, shift away from free distribution of content, to prioritizing distribution of media content that is paid to be promoted, it'll replace the stories that deserve to be seen based on their merit and virtues.

It'll be a dull web.