JOURNALISM BETWEEN POLITICS, PROPAGANDA AND PRISON

12 to 18 September 2015, Potsdam, Germany

Held in cooperation with the Federal Foreign Ministry, the workshop invites young journalists between 18 and 26 years from the Eastern Partnership countries Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, Belarus, Armenia and Azerbaijan as well as Germany. The event will offer a six-day intensive workshop led by expert subject-area trainers. Participants will be taught how propaganda works and what its objectives are, how it can be recognised, how to verify information (including within social networks), and how as journalists they can defend themselves against propaganda, co-optation, and manipulation by governments and lobbyists. The workshop takes place in English. Please find here the application call.

 

70 YEARS POTSDAM AGREEMENT: AT A NEW CROSSROADS?

Against the background of ‘70 Years Potsdam Agreement’, on successive days in September the M100 Sanssouci Colloquium and the Alfred Herrhausen Society will hold two conferences. The M100 Sanssouci Colloquium will take place on Thursday, 17 September 2015 in the Orangery of the Sanssouci Palace in Potsdam. The following day, the Alfred Herrhausen Society in conjunction with the FAZ will host its ‘Denk ich an Deutschland’ (‘When I think of Germany…’) conference in the Deutsche Bank’s atrium on Unter den Linden.

Read on

 

M100 Webteaser 2015

As chairman of the M100 Sanssouci Colloquium advisory committee, Potsdam's Lord Mayor Jann Jakobs has expressed his sympathy for the victims – and their loved ones – of the bloody attack on the French satirical newspaper, Charlie Hebdo. He claims that terror must be faced not with anger and powerlessness, but with a defence of our constitutionally protected values, such as our freedom of speech and of the press.

Lord Mayor Jann Jakobs: "It is with deep dismay and profound sadness that we commemorate the victims of the cowardly and brutal attack on the editorial offices of the Parisian satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo. Our thoughts and feelings go out to the family members and colleagues of the victims, but also to all the people of France. Like none other, their country represents the values of a pluralistic, tolerant society. Indeed, France has inscribed freedom, equality and fraternity in its flag. It is shocking to see these values trampled on in so drastic a manner. As mayor of a tolerant and open-minded city such as Potsdam, which is no less a strong media hub as well, this attack hits me particularly hard.

We have constantly fought for freedom of expression and a strong media. In 2010 we made a statement by awarding the M100 prize to the Danish caricaturist Kurt Westergaard, who still fears for his life and lives under police protection because of his Mohammed cartoon; once again, the Media Summit demonstrated its accord with the pulse of the times. Freedom of the press is a must for democracy to function properly. If this principle is not heeded, fundamental rights become baseless. With the new Potsdam Edict of Toleration of 2008, our city‘s civil society is showing that it is active, open and interested in diversity and multiplicity. Thus, I am certain that the overwhelming majority of Potsdamers stand behind me when I declare: Je suis Charlie!"

In the area "About M100" you can find two films about the history of the M100 Sanssouci Colloquium: one about the inception phase in 2005 (including interviews with Jann Jakobs, Mathias Döpfner, Wolfram Weimer, Josef Joffe amongst others) and a portrait of Lord Weidenfeld.

Italian journalist and writer Roberto Saviano received the M100 Media Award / Chancellor Angela Merkel held the key political speech of the evening

Italian writer and journalist Roberto Saviano (Gomorrah) accepted the M100 Media Award at a festive award ceremony, while the international media conference M100 Sanssouci Colloquium came to a successful close at the Orangery Palace in Potsdam this evening.

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The dazzling evening featured a keynote political speech from Chancellor Angela Merkel, who attended the M100 Media Award for the third time.

Speaking to Roberto Saviano, whose life has been threatened by the Mafia since the publication of his book about the Neapolitan Camorra ten years ago, forcing him and his family to live underground under police protection, the Chancellor expressed a clear commitment to press freedom: ‘We have to continue to defend freedom of the press time and again, always bearing in mind how quickly this right can be endangered – even here in Europe. Freedom of the press has a great deal to do with the absence of state interference and censorship, but it is much more than that. It also includes the freedom to uncover abuses and to report on them without fear of reprisal or even personal endangerment.’ She also touched on another commitment in reference to the M100 Sanssouci Colloquium held that afternoon, advocating the need for a strong and united Europe: ‘Just as the M100 Media Award is understood to be a European prize, the colloquium in which the award is being given today focuses on the situation in Europe.’ And further: ‘We must never forget that it is largely thanks to European integration that we no longer live on a continent of war, restricted freedom and antagonism, but what is still a union of peace, freedom, prosperity, stability and good neighbourly relations. The European Union has achieved far more in its history than past generations could have ever imagined. Even with major historical trajectories aside, we benefit daily from European integration in our everyday lives, often without even being conscious of it, including unrestricted travel, our common currency, and diverse personal encounters.’

Giovanni di Lorenzo, editor-in-chief of the weekly newspaper Die Zeit, gave the speech honouring Roberto Saviano. Di Lorenzo praised the award for distinguishing Saviano’s work: ‘Roberto Saviano depends on support from the same society whose eyes he has repeatedly opened with his work – precisely because some would rather close their eyes again, turn away and know nothing about these things.’ And further: ‘An evening like this helps make Roberto Saviano a little bit safer in his home country. It is a great sign of solidarity – through the presence of all of you and by awarding this prize, the M100 Media Award. “There will be situations,” Roberto once said, “where I will become more vulnerable because fewer people are paying attention to me.” To him, public attention is not just a decorative accessory or flattering gesture. It is a kind of life insurance.’

Roberto Saviano himself thanked the Colloquium for the award and called on European media representatives to have the courage to present complex contexts and situations as they are without abbreviating them. He dedicated his prize to Turkish journalist and author Ahmet Altan and his brother, economics professor Mehmet Altan, who were arrested in Turkey on 10 September.

Addressing this year’s topic ‘War or Peace’, some 70 participants in what is now the 12th edition of the M100 Sanssouci Colloquium spent the day at round-table discussions having to do with the return of geopolitical strategies, creeping European disintegration, the increasing radicalisation of Western, Middle Eastern and other societies, as well as the role and responsibility of the media in these developments.

The M100 Sanssouci Colloquium was opened by renowned historian Prof Dr Dan Diner, who teaches modern history at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and served as director of the Simon Dubnow Institute for Jewish History and Culture at Leipzig University from 1999 to 2004. Diner warns of clear, discernable echoes from the past: ‘The current pattern of political-military activity is directed at locations that bear an unsettling resemblance to hotspots of the 19th century. First, to the constellation of the Crimean War from 1853 to 1856’ He continues: ‘If this kind of geopolitically-semantisised conflict constellation were to actually solidify, it would raise pressing questions about the future of the European project in general and the role of Germany in particular.’

Kai Diekmann, editor of the BILD Group, interviewed Can Dündar, former editor-in-chief of the Turkish daily newspaper Cumhuriyet in a special talk addressing the current situation in Turkey. ‘The situation in Turkey resembles a Frankenstein scenario,’ Dündar said. ‘The creature – the Gülen movement – has turned against its creator, Erdogan’. Erdogan, he noted, was the one who gave the Gülen movement strength and momentum through earlier efforts to shore up state institutions with loyalists. ‘This also explains how they know so precisely who belongs to it,’ Dündar explained, referring to the swift arrest of thousands of civil servants in Turkey following the attempted overthrow.

 

The short video clip about this year's M100YEJ workshop on the topic of investigative journalism with 27 very talented young journalists from all over Europe is online now!

The workshop took place in cooperation with OCCRP, ICIJ, Correctiv, Netzwerk Recherche, Medieninnovationszentrum Babelsberg (MIZ), and Vereinigung Europäischer Presse, amongst others. It was financed by Auswärtiges Amt and National Endowment for Democracy.

Thanks to all our partners and supporters!

YEJ Video

The video about this year's M100 Sanssouci Colloquium is online now! With statements of Dr Christian Rainer (Profil), Prof. Dr Ulrike Guérot (European Democracy Lab), Götz Hamann (Die Zeit), Jim Egan (BBC World News), Xenia Kounalaki (Kathimerini), Kai Diekmann (BILD), Dr Alexandra Föderl-Schmid (Der Standard), Gabor Steingart (Handelsblatt), Dr George Tzogopoulos (chinaandgreece.com), as well as excerpts of the speeches of Prof. Dr Dan Diner (Hebrew University Jerusalem), Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel, Laudatory Giovanni di Lorenzo (Die Zeit), and M100 Media Laureate Roberto Saviano.
Watch the video here.

Attention! Belarus in Focus has published an international competition for journalists writing about Belarus in international media, have a look here:

 Belarus

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video m100 2016

A visual summary of the M100 Sanssouci Colloquium 2016 "WAR OR PEACE, The return of geopolitics, disintegration and the radicalisation of society in Europe" and the M100 Media Award to the italian author Roberto Saviano. Political keynote: Federal Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel, laudation: Giovanni di Lorenzo (die Zeit)