This map shows press freedom around the world. The darker the colour, the more threatened press freedom appears. (Courtesy of Reporters Without Borders)

Canada ranks 16th in global press freedom

Norway and North Korea represent polar opposites on the World Press Freedom Index

As the global public marked World Press Freedom Day on Sunday, May 3, Canada ranked 16th on the 2020 World Press Freedom Index prepared by Reporters Without Borders.

The index measures journalistic freedom in 180 countries, drawing a qualitative questionnaire. Categories include pluralism measuring the degree to which opinions are represented in the media, media independence measuring the degree to which media are able to function independently of sources of power, and abuses measuring the level of abuses and violence. Countries receive a score ranging between zero to 100 with zero behind the best and 100 the worst.

RELATED: Canada ‘closely following’ reports of attacks on journalists in Russia: Freeland

According to the index, Canada scored 15.29, good enough for 16th place, an improvement of two spots compared to 2019. Canada’s best ranking since the start of the index in 2013 was eighth in 2015, its worst was 22nd in 2017. Compared to the other G7 countries, Canada ranks second behind Germany (11th), but ahead of France (34th), the United Kingdom (35th), Italy (41st), the United States (45th) and Japan (66th).

Looking globally, Norway leads with a total score of 7.84, followed by Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Netherlands, Jamaica, Costa Rica, Switzerland, New Zealand and Portugal. The ‘bottom’ 10 start with Cuba (171st) followed by Laos, Iran, Syria, Vietnam, Djibouti, China, Eritrea, Turkmenistan and North Korea.

Other notable offenders against journalistic freedom include several leading countries of the Middle East such as Saudia Arabia (170th), Egypt (166th) and Turkey (154th), several prominent countries in Asia, including Singapore (158th), the Philippines (136th) and Indonesia (119th), as well as several authoritarian and semi-authoritarian countries in eastern and central Europe, starting with Belarus (153th), Russia (149th), Ukraine (96th), as well as Hungary (89th) and Poland (62th), the last two being members of the European Union.

Geographically, press freedom is at its highest in a narrow strip that runs from Scandinavia through Holland, Belgium, Germany and Switzerland, with a few spots outside that corridor.

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, seven journalists have so far died in 2020, with five of those cases in Africa or the Middle East. A total of 1,370 journalists between 1992 and 2020 have died because of their work.


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

CRD warns of toxic algae bloom at Thetis Lake Regional Park

Visitors advised to avoid swimming in lake, keep pets out of water

Saanich police, pound respond to possible cougar sighting

Cougar possibly seen in area of 4500-block of Chatterton Way

New exhibit at Point Ellice House examines history of waste, water and privilege

Night soil scavengers in the 19th century would collect human waste and dump it around the city

Coastal scenes at the forefront for July shows at Victoria galleries

From sculpture to landscape paintings, summer art is about nature

VIDEO: Musqueam Chief captures captivating footage of bald eagle catching meal

‘This is why we have chosen to live here since time immemorial,’ Chief Wayne Sparrow’s nephew says

Migrant workers stage multi-city action for full status amid COVID-19 risks

‘COVID-19 has exacerbated an existing crisis’

Okanagan school drops ‘Rebels’ sports team name, citing links with U.S. Civil War

Name and formerly-used images “fly in the face” of the district’s human rights policy, says board chair

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Stop enforcing sex work laws during COVID-19, advocates say

There are provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws that make workers immune from prosecution, but not from arrest

Liberal party finished 2019 having spent $43 million, raised $42 million

All political parties had until midnight June 30 to submit their financial reports for last year

B.C. teacher loses licence after sexual relationships with two recently-graduated students

The teacher won’t be allowed to apply for a teaching certificate until 2035

White-throated sparrows have changed their tune, B.C. study unveils

Study marks an unprecedented development scientists say has caused them to sit up and take note

Most Read