What is the MFC?
The Media Freedom Coalition is a partnership of
countries working together proactively to advocate for media freedom at home
and abroad. The MFC also advocates for
the safety of journalists and media workers, and holds to account those who
harm journalists and severely restrict them from doing their job.
The MFC does this through a combination of
advocacy, diplomatic interventions, encouraging and supporting legal reforms,
international events, and making funds available for media freedom initiatives.
The MFC was established in July 2019 at the
Global Conference for Media Freedom and now comprises over 50 member states
from six continents. MFC member states work closely with civil society (through
the Consultative Network), legal experts (through the High Level Panel of Legal
Experts on Media Freedom) and other international bodies such as UNESCO, as
well as journalists and media workers themselves.
Read the MFC’s Terms of Reference here.
Why does the MFC exist?
Media freedom is an integral element of
democracy, global security and prosperity. People need free and independent
media to provide them with accurate information and informed analysis if
governments and other powerful actors are to be held to account. The free
exchange of views and information allows communities to identify and pursue
emerging opportunities and to recognise problems that must be addressed.
Yet media freedom faces growing threats around
the world. Challenges include restrictive laws, punitive legal measures,
arbitrary and/or unlawful surveillance, censorship, undue interference in the
circulation of information online, physical violence and online harassment.
These are exacerbated by financial challenges, which jeopardize media
independence and sustainability, and by the prominence of mis- and disinformation,
which erodes public trust in, and support for, a free media.
Governments, which are responsible for
protecting human rights, are too often the source of threats to media freedom.
The unique added value of the Media Freedom Coalition is its access to
governments, and its ability to intervene at the highest level with the
governments of countries where media freedom is at risk, while showing
solidarity with countries that work to improve media freedom.
and objectives of the MFC
goal of the Media Freedom Coalition is to improve the media freedom environment
and the safety of journalists both at home and abroad.
understands the media freedom environment to incorporate critical
enabling factors in three areas:
- The presence and
implementation of relevant laws, policies and supporting institutions that
enable media freedom and reduce impunity for crimes against journalists
- Political and
societal norms and attitudes that favour media freedom and deplore attempts to
restrict or intimidate journalists for doing their work
- An economic
environment that enables journalists and media outlets to report independently
in the public interest, as part of a diverse and plural media sector
understands the safety of journalists to encompass physical, legal,
digital, and psychosocial safety, in recognition of the range of threats and
intimidatory tactics that journalists face today.
- Improve the enabling
environment for media freedom, by strengthening laws, policies, and the
economic climate for independent media
governments, state actors and other powerful individuals to uphold media
freedom and hold to account the perpetrators of crimes against journalists
journalists and news organisations are better protected and better able to
protect themselves from threats and intimidation
- Energise and
mobilise the MFC’s member countries to ensure a diverse, informed, engaged and