1 September 2016
(APC, Bytes for All, Pakistan and Media Matters for Democracy )
The manner in which the government of Pakistan orchestrated the forceful enactment of the controversial Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act is demonstrative of its blatant disregard for human rights and due process.
“Political expression, minorities, human rights defenders, journalists are under threat in Pakistan.” This was the message stressed at the beginning of a session organised by Bytes for All, Pakistan, on the state of surveillance and censorship in the countr
[Cross-posted from PakReport Blog, written by Jaro Valuch of Konpa Group]
It was clear pretty early after the earthquake in Haiti in January 2010 that the disaster was exceptional in the scale of destruction as well as it was exceptional in the scale and type of response it triggered. Particularly unprecedential was the response from tech and crisis mapping community.
We have chronicled here on Aid Watch how media coverage of disasters influences disasters, and how late the US media has been to the story of the disastrous flood in Pakistan, with apparently anemic donor response as a result.
Puzzlement deepened this morning at 7:30 am when I picked up my NYT off my doorstep and saw the four column front-page headline: Much of Pakistan’s Progress is Lost in Its Floodwaters. The NYT devotes not only the huge front-page space to the flood, but also two prime pages inside of the first section. Could somebody please explain the mysterious alchemy by which a tragedy going on for a month already finally become a huge story?
The latest story on the catastrophic flooding in Pakistan is about how it hasn’t been a story.
Compared to the response to the Haitian earthquake, media coverage of the Pakistan floods has been paltry. While news coverage isn’t correlated with need, it does have a major effect on the amount of disaster relief aid given. An article in the Chronicle of Philanthropy yesterday reported that eleven US charities had so far raised only $5 million for Pakistan flood relief, compared to $560 million raised by 39 US groups in the two and a half weeks after the Haiti earthquake.
[Guest Plot Post: Robert Munro is the Chief Information Officer at Energy for Opportunity and a Graduate Fellow in computational linguistics at Stanford where he specializes in methods for processing large volumes of information in less-resourced languages.]