Bali Media Forum 2013: Ethical Journalism for Democracy

Taking the hate speech out of reporting media and pol​itics

Conference to mark the fifth anniversary of the Bali Media Forum
Bali, Indonesia, 6 - 8 November 2013

Organised in conjunction with the Bali Democracy Forum

Key Issues

The Bali Media Forum 2013 will address a range of key issues related to promoting quality journalism at election time. These include:

  • Fundamental ethical standards;
  • Managing political and election coverage
  • Ethics in political reporting: guidelines and codes
  • Ethics and social media: who can you trust
  • Ethics during elections: the role of editors, the role of the press council, the role of the election commission
  • Ethnic and religious intolerance during elections
  • Exposing prejudice, half-truths and lies;
  • Ethics in election coverage training;
  • Journalists’ ethics in election support projects.


In marking the fifth anniversary of the Bali Media Forum process this year’s event will focus on providing a platform for debate on how media professionals can meet the challenge of ethnic and religious intolerance in political reporting and particularly under the pressure of covering election campaigns.

It will offer a unique opportunity to develop common standards and strategies by bringing together journalists, editors, media owners, press councils, media training institutions; media support groups and donors supporting media ethics projects.
The main purpose of the project is to agree a common set of standards and principles that address the challenge of ethnic and religious intolerance during elections campaigns. These standards will form the basis for the adoption of guidelines by editors and press councils in the region and beyond.

In addressing these challenges the Forum will build on the conclusions of the international conference on right-wing extremism and hate crime, which took place in Oslo in May of this year. The Bali Media Forum will provide the opportunity to further define and develop strategies of implementation for the recommendations the conference made on the role of media.

The Forum will promote support to internal media governance (inside the media houses) and external self-regulation (press councils, media councils) as becoming an integral part of comprehensive media training programmes as well as media support projects.

A further important result of the Forum will be the production of a conference report that will highlight case studies of best practice in setting ethical reporting standards during elections as well as including the conclusions and recommendation of the Forum.

The publication will be made widely available through the Thomson Foundation’s network of more than 5,000 alumni as well as through its network of media training institutions. The Ethical Journalism Network will disseminate the publications to its network of professional organisations and the Indonesian Press Council will make it a centrepiece of their work in preparation of the elections in Indonesia in 2014.

As in previous years the Bali Media Forum will be organised in conjunction with the Bali Democracy Forum. For this year, the organisers have succeeded in reaching agreement in principle with the government of Indonesia that a special session on media ethics will be held within the framework of the Bali Democracy Forum.

More Information

The programme for this year's event can be downloaded here.

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