Committee to Protect Journalists
|Type||501(c)3 nonprofit organization|
|Purpose||Press freedom and journalist human rights|
|Headquarters||330 Seventh Avenue, 11th Floor|
New York City, New York 10001
|Affiliations||International Freedom of Expression Exchange|
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is an American independent non-profit, non-governmental organization, based in New York City, New York with correspondents around the world. CPJ promotes press freedom and defends the rights of journalists. The American Journalism Review has called the organization "Journalism's Red Cross".
History and programs
The Committee to Protect Journalists was founded in 1981 in response to the harassment of Paraguayan journalist Alcibiades González Delvalle. Its founding honorary chairman was Walter Cronkite. Since 1991, it has held the annual CPJ International Press Freedom Awards Dinner, during which journalists and press freedom advocates who have endured beatings, threats, intimidation, and prison for reporting the news receive awards.
Since 1992, the organization has compiled an annual list of all journalists killed in the line of duty around the world. For 2017, it reported that 46 journalists had been killed in connection with their work, as compared to 48 in 2016 and 73 in 2015, and that of those killed, 18 had been murdered. A running total of journalists killed over the entire period from 1992 is available on the group's website, as well as the statistics for any given year; as of April 2018[update] the total was 1285. The organization's figures are typically lower than similar ongoing counts by Reporters Without Borders or the International Federation of Journalists because of CPJ's established parameters and confirmation process. It also publishes an annual census of imprisoned journalists.
The organization works to protect and enhance free press rights within the United States, which, among other efforts, includes its US Press Freedom Tracker project. In 2017 the project had a small infusion of financing after a $50,000 contribution from US Representative Greg Gianforte. The funds arose as a stipulation of a civil settlement Gianforte reached after his election eve attack on The Guardian political reporter Ben Jacobs in May, 2017, after Jacobs asked him a question on health care policy. Gianforte was convicted of criminal assault in state court in June, 2017 stemming from his assault of Jacobs. He was fined and sentenced to community service and anger management therapy. As a stipulation of his settlement with Jacobs, Gianforte donated $50,000 to the Committee to Protect Journalists, which said it would use the funds to support the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker.
The organization is a founding member of the International Freedom of Expression Exchange (IFEX), a global network of more than seventy non-governmental organizations that monitors free-expression violations around the world and defends journalists, writers, and others persecuted for exercising their right to freedom of expression. In 2016, the Times of Israel reported that the United Nations voted to deny consultative status to CPJ citing concerns with the group's finances, and also because CPJ does not support punishment for hate speech. The ban was overturned and CPJ was granted consultative status in July 2016.
Staff and directors
Its board of directors has included American journalists, including:
- Stephen J. Adler of Reuters
- Amanda Bennett
- Krishna Bharat
- Rajiv Chandrasekaran
- Susan Chira of The New York Times
- Sheila Coronel, Graduate School of Journalism, Columbia University
- Josh Friedman, Carey Institute for Global Good
- Anne Garrels
- Charlayne Hunter-Gault
- Jonathan Klein, Getty Images
- Jane Kramer, The New Yorker
- Isaac Lee, Univision
- Lara Logan, CBS
- Kati Marton
- Rebecca MacKinnon
- Michael Massing
- Victor Navasky
- Clarence Page
- Norman Pearlstine
- Ahmed Rashid
- David Remnick
- Alan Rusbridger
- David Schlesinger
- Jacob Weisberg, The Slate Group
- Matthew Winkler, Bloomberg News
Former board members:
- Reporters Without Borders
- The Coalition For Women In Journalism
- List of journalists killed in the Mexican Drug War
- List of journalists killed in Russia
- Wu Xianghu
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 September 2015. Retrieved 31 October 2019.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
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- Marcos, Cristina (21 June 2017). "Gianforte Causes Stir After Becoming Newest House Member". The Hill. Archived from the original on 14 December 2019. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
- Kyung Lah, Noa Yadidi and Carma Hassan. "Gianforte pleads guilty to assault in incident with reporter". CNN. Archived from the original on 21 November 2018. Retrieved 12 June 2017.
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- "U.N. body overturns rejection, accredits press freedom watchdog". Archived from the original on 30 September 2018. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
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