A BBC series commemorating the 75th anniversary of its World Service is focused on freedom of speech, and freedom of the media and information.
The first three essays on freedom of speech are by Jeffrey Sachs (“Our problems – ranging from climate change to species extinction to failed states – are global and require global co-operation to solve them”); Onora O’Neill (“Any search for truth needs structures and disciplines. It’s undermined by casual disregard of accuracy or evidence. Unconditional freedom just is not optimal for truth-seeking”); and Wole Soyinka (“It is time that the worst construction is placed on all forms of discrimination that claim a divine mandate, especially those that transgress against the entitlements of others to a secular dispensation”). All three, said the BBC, “offer some occasionally surprising views on the role of journalists, the arguments for unconditional media freedom, and the pros and cons of giving preachers free rein.”
Future topics in the BBC series will be:
Global poll on attitudes to the media
Personal tales of people caught up in the news
Viewpoints from leading thinkers
Focus on media restrictions in Cuba and Egypt