The World Press Freedom Day

“The problem with today’s world is that everyone believes they have the right to express their opinion AND have others listen to it.

The correct statement of individual rights is that everyone has the right to an opinion, but crucially, that opinion can be roundly ignored and even made fun of, particularly if it is demonstrably nonsense!”

Brian Cox

The third of May commemorates the freedom of the press, raises awareness about how important it is, and reminds governments of their duty to uphold the human right to freedom of expression. Many journalists and media professionals risk their lives and their freedom during their careers in pursuit of their stories, as some countries still put their journalists in jail to stop them from releasing certain information to the public. World Press Freedom Day aims to put an end to that and to honour those who have lost their lives because of their profession.

The freedom of the press and freedom of expression were established as fundamental human rights in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted in 1948. The freedom of the press has since been a concern of many journalists and governments, and in 1976 a group of independent journalists founded the World Press Freedom Committee (in USA).

You can celebrate this day by supporting your local newspapers, learning more about the issues of press freedom, and being an advocate for the freedom of expression.
Chulmleigh Old Fair, 2019

Karolina is honoured to be affiliated with Molton Monthly magazine, local medium focusing on positive community news, engaging excellent photographers and journalists on bases of equal opportunities and fairness, whilst demonstrating long term love and enthusiasm for all the good, positive things happening in our charming countryside area we all love!

I am the third generation reporter in the family. Media work has always been an area of great interest to me. Over the years, along with other curious minds, I observed the impact of the uncensored social media on a human behaviour; an epidemic of mental illnesses; despotism and a widespread cognitive dissonance. I am especially concerned by the rise of racism and all kinds of extremism, continued suppression of an independent, critical journalism facing tsunamis of Dunning-Kruger effect.
Sometimes, on local scales, reporters get pushed out of the circles they make uncomfortable; on higher levels, especially in less developed countries, too advanced, fearless and open minded reporters get murdered. Recently, and shockingly, a young talented journalist and his fiancé were murdered at their home in Slovakia (my homeland). This has shaken and shocked many, and was followed by street protests and a change of government.
Yet, today, debates died out and people have forgotten almost all about it now.

Things have changed since the day I first I set my foot in the news office in 1998. Today, the mainstream media get attacked daily, people trust a stranger on the Internet more than a trained and responsibly monitored reporter. I cannot understand why – except the fact that the social media thrives on negativity and the public’s mind is poisoned by far too much of all the chaos these platforms spread around, which is then followed by plenty of tribal behaviour that is considered the norm and the norm is considered an oddity – we tend to surround ourselves with those who make us comfortable by agreeing with us. In this turmoil world, this is reassuring. However, in many cases, ignorance leads to harmful behaviours towards the world.

Listen to this speech by Maria Ressa, remarkably brave journalist:

If I make one point here, let it be this:

Never stop asking the right questions. Why are certain groups of people saying certain things in a certain way? Who benefits from that “story”? What is a hard indisputable fact , and what is an opinion and a bias?
And where do we all stand in this?

Deep Fake era of an AI: who can spot the difference?

Which image is real?

Take a really good look at these two images.

Fake image of a snowy hills, created by artificial intelligence, AI
Frozen tree bending over completely covered in snow, with a pink sunset sky behind it, winter at a high mountains
Here are some tips that work for me… Real photographs often aren’t perfect, neat and flawless, almost as if they were made of plastic. There may be noise. There may be a mess. Artificial images contain fairly obvious mathematical repetition (such as the shadows in the image on the left), the weird patterns that make no sense (such as the snow texture at the bottom of the image) or an unnatural shape (oval sun? Oh please….). These will give you a hint that a view may be computer generated. Colours may also be too strong, although the image on the right is fairly colourful. It’s just too, too perfect, and real life – well – isn’t.

I see far too many people believe in the influx of artificial computer generated images online as “real”. So I feel it is important to talk about this more. Unless you don’t mind being fooled and have a warped perception of reality (oblivion is a bliss), we need to learn how to distinguish between the two. We have to start teaching this more. That is our challenge for the years ahead!

Did you like this short read? You may also enjoy reading this ARTICLE.

Did you see this story about AI winning a professional photographic competition, made as a STUNT? Ehmmm…. Makes you think, doesn’t it? Yes, technology is impressive and gets incredibly convincing results.
When do we start to draw a line to protect our genuine, imperfect, vulnerable and unique humanity? Do you feel like things are getting out of hand?

Want to test yourself?
Here is one more LINK for you.