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Amidst disinformation and dubious information platforms, independent media step up in times of pandemic

Press Freedom Day and Week 2020


In a conversation with the Razones Editoriales program on Radio Universidad de Santiago, UNESCO Santiago Information and Communication Coordinator Nicolás del Valle, an academic at the university, stated that the major challenges in information systems have come in the area of controlling the proliferation of fake news and the full development of journalism in a context of restricted human rights.


The interview came within the framework of the partnership between the Universidad de Santiago de Chile and the UNESCO Santiago Information and Communication Sector to broadcast content during World Press Freedom Week, held from May 4 to 8, 2020. UNESCO Santiago ran an awareness campaign over social networks during the week and an interview on the university radio station. Actions were focused on promoting journalism and freedom of expression during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Nicolás del Valle spoke about the major challenges facing journalism in unprecedented times, with a worldwide pandemic in progress.


"Amidst disinformation and the emergence of dubious news platforms, independent media have stepped up to the challenge, particularly community and university news sources."

   -- Nicolás del Valle


Similarly, Del Valle added that –since the Chilean social crisis of October 2019– the local media had faced significant shortfalls in the financing, aggravated by the concentration of ownership in the media sector.


Here, he stated that the COVID-19 factor had accelerated the displacement of media financing models, which “sets and medium and long-term challenge for us about what the financing system is and how we as a country want to address an integrated information and communications policy to think about more equitable and inclusive distribution.”