Amy Goodman on her educational program Democracy NOW! Democracy NOW! broadcast daily Monday to Friday. For more information go to: www.democracynow.org. Photo: 3mnewswire.org
Amy Goodman to receive Right Livelihood Award
By Andreas Klamm, journalist, broadcast journalist and author of Liberty and Peace NOW!
Washington D. C. / New York City / London/Stockholm/October 28, 2008. The international and excellent journalist which is known as one of the world best top journalists, authors and broadcast journalists has been awarded to receive the Right Livelihood Award on December 8, 2008 by the Right Livelihood Award Foundation in Stockholm in Sweden.
Amy Goodman will share the right Livelihood Award with four other woman which have been taking part in a vital role of social transformation.
The three other women which will receive also the Right Livelihood Award 2008 are
Krishnammal and Sankaralingam Jagannathan / LAFTI (India)
“…for two long lifetimes of work dedicated to realising in practice the Gandhian vision of social justice and sustainable human development, for which they have been referred to as ‘India’s soul’.”
Asha Hagi (Somalia)
“…for continuing to lead at great personal risk the female participation in the peace and reconciliation process in her war-ravaged country.”
Monika Hauser (Germany)
“…for her tireless commitment to working with women who have experienced the most horrific sexual violence in some of the most dangerous countries in the world, and campaigning for them to receive social recognition and compensation.”
Amy Goodman will be honored for “…for developing an innovative model of truly independent political journalism that brings to millions of people the alternative voices that are often excluded by mainstream media.”
Presented annually in Stockholm at a ceremony in the Swedish Parliament, the Right Livelihood Award is usually shared by four recipients. One of them may receive an Honorary Award, given to a person or group whose work the Jury wishes to recognize but who is not primarily in need of monetary support. The others share the prize money of 2,000,000 Swedish kronor (approximately USD 310,000). The prize money is for ongoing successful work, never for personal use.
The media is sometimes called the fourth power in a democracy. But in many countries of the world such as for example Germany, Iran, Iraq, China, North Korea and many others the media is today no longer willing or able to play this role. Instead it defers to commercial and political interests, thus eroding democracy and destroying elementary and fundamental vital parts of a democracy such as the freedom of the press, liberty, peace, free speech and justice.
With Democracy Now!, Amy Goodman has shown what the alternative to this dangerous trend can look like. Democracy Now! is the largest public media collaboration in the U.S. which is now available to people seeking alternative viewpoints around the globe.
Amy Goodman was born in 1957, graduated from Harvard in 1984 and became news director at the New York radio station WBAI a few years later. In 1996 she launched the daily one-hour news broadcast Democracy Now!, which she now hosts with Juan Gonzalez, and which is produced live from 08.00 to 09.00 US EST.
Democracy Now! focuses on issues its producers consider under-reported or ignored by mainstream news coverage, like global news or reporting on anti-war activism in the U.S. It provides hard-hitting, independent, breaking coverage of war and peace, U.S. domestic and foreign policy, and struggles for social, racial, economic, gender and environmental justice in the U.S. and abroad.
Democracy Now! seeks to give voice to the voiceless. Its broadcasts include:
in-depth interviews with community members, activists, academics, artists and journalists shut out by the mainstream media,
debates between activists and people in power,
investigative reports and exclusive interviews with usual and controversial guests,
and on-the-ground reporting from protests, the recent conventions and hot spots round the world.
Democracy Now! – Facts and figures
Democracy Now! is the fastest growing independent news program in the United States of America . The educational program is now syndicated to more than 700 radio and TV, satellite and cable TV networks in North America reaching millions of people worldwide.
Democracy Now! is produced by seven producers, 20 full-time and 15 paid part-time staff as well as many volunteers. Broadcast daily as an hourly TV show, but with its founding on radio, it is produced in such a way that the stories never rely on the pictures, which allows it to be sent out as a radio show on community radio stations all over the US.
Democracy Now! has an outreach team working to encourage communities to demand that their community radio stations transmit the program.
Democracy Now!’s innovative technical solutions allow for high usability for any kind of audience. There is ‘close captioning’ for deaf people and numerous voluntary transcribers produce full transcripts of the show. On the website, there are different types of streams and downloads, e.g. audio files, but also high-quality video files that are sent out, for example, by a Japanese TV channel once a week. Democracy Now! also keeps a complete archive of all its shows, which people can research for free.
Democracy Now! receives no government or corporate funding. Because of its educational mission, it has charitable status according to US law (501c3). Major organizational donors have been the Lannan Foundation and the Wallace Global Fund. Significant contributions also come from listeners themselves.
What Amy Goodman is calling “Trickle-up journalism”
Amy Goodman describes Democracy Now! as ‘trickle-up journalism’, because the stories it runs are often taken up by the mainstream media and her interviewees are very often interviewed by other channels after they have appeared on Democracy Now! Thus, the significance of Democracy Now! goes beyond the show as such: It also serves to open up the media landscape, acting as a ‘conveyor belt’ for stories that otherwise would not reach the mainstream media.
Awards and books received by Amy Goodman
Amy Goodman’s awards include the Golden Reel for the Best National Documentary for ‘Drilling and Killing: Chevron and Nigeria’s Oil Dictatorship’ in 1998, and the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Prize for ‘Massacre: the Story of East Timor’. This story had almost cost her life: In East Timor, she survived a massacre in 1991 in which Indonesian soldiers gunned down 270 Timorese people.
The journalist, author and broadcast journalist has also written three hard-hitting books with her brother, David Goodman: The Exception to the Rulers (2004); Static: Government Liars, Media Cheer-leaders and the People who Fight Back (2006); and Standing up to the Madness (2008). She also syndicates a column to national papers.
Democracy Now! is broadcast daily from 8-9am EST/1-2pm GMT. To watch today’s show and for a list of international and domestic stations that carry DN!, please go to www.democracynow.org.
Quotation: What Amy Goodman has said about the Right Livelihood Award
“I am completely honored to have my work and the work of my colleagues held in such high regard, it makes me realize how important the work of bringing a truly independent voice to broadcast news and journalism really is. I really believe in free speech and independent journalism as a tool for peace, for understanding. It is so important, especially during times like these, that the media hold the politicians feet to the fire… we all need the real answers, the truth as best we can. This is why I get up every morning and go to the red firehouse we broadcast from everyday, still as excited as my first day at Democracy Now! over 12 years ago.”
The murder and killing of independent journalists fighting for liberty and democracy
Not all journalists which do publish alternative and independent reports do receive an award. Many of these journalists instead of receiving awards have been murdered. According to the Committee to Protect Journalist in 2008, 33 journalists have been killed. In 2007 according to information in the USA a number of 67 journalists have been killed.
The International Press Institute in Europe knows already about 37 journalists which been murdered in the year 2008. In the years 2007 93 journalists have been killed according to the International Press Institute.
Reporters without borders knows about the death of 34 journalists in 2008 while 126 journalists are imprisoned. About so called 93 “cyber dissidents” and 9 media assistant staff do serve in prison for simply speaking out a part of the truth for laboring for liberty, democracy and peace.
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF THE HUMAN RIGHTS
UNITED NATIONS, New York City, United States of America, 1948
Source: Right Livelihood Foundation, Sweden.
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