British news organizations spurn freelance reporting from Syria

Press-Gazette | Committee to Protect Journalists | WAN-IFRA

The Guardian and other U.K. newspapers say that under most circumstances they won't take freelance reporting from Syria, William Turvill writes. Gavin Rodgers reported earlier this month that the British Sunday Times doesn't use freelance work from Syria because it does not "wish to encourage freelancers to take exceptional risks."



Sunday Times reporter Marie Colvin died in Syria last February. McClatchy and Washington Post freelancer Austin Tice, last seen in Syria, has been missing since August. Syria is the world's most dangerous place for journalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists says.

In a blog post for CPJ, Jean-Paul Marthoz writes that policies such as the Sunday Times' raise "another crucial issue: Who decides what is news? The freedom to cover particularly brutal conflicts is at stake if thugs from security forces or rebel groups are able to turn away journalists."

The Times, Turvill notes, does send staff reporters to Syria.

Previously: NBC’s Richard Engel, crew freed after 5 days of captivity in Syria | New York Times’ Anthony Shadid dies of apparent asthma attack in Syria | Freelance reporter Austin Tice missing, was last in Syria

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at TBD.com and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.

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