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About us

Mission

(1) The quality of the information available through the media comes from the professionalism, ethics and courage of the journalists in the field and the media culture that supports them. The strengthening of a viable independent media in Sri Lanka is a critical step in the on going process of building democratic institutions, eliminating ethnic conflict and encouraging public participation.

(2) There is perpetrated on the media a psychology of fear through abductions, killings and other forms of pressure. The conversation has become not about what we write but about what we do not. For example journalists are specifically advised not to speak disparagingly of either the President or his brother the Secretary of Defence. They are told not to write about either of them in a particular manner. Media certainly has a duty to disclose responsibly and within the strict guidelines of journalistic practice and ethics but self-censorship in Sri Lanka has gone beyond the pale. We believe this needs to be changed.

(3) The government has also intensified efforts to exert control over new means of communication—including satellite television, the internet, and mobile telephones—as well as the news outlets that employ them. Worsening violence against the press and impunity for such crimes are forcing more journalists into self-censorship or exile. The level of violence and physical harassment directed at the press by both official and non-state actors is phenomenal.

(4) This has to be looked at in the background of the restriction of democratic space in the past five years. The breakdown of institutions, a Parliament in which ministers fail to turn up to give answers to questions, where the Committee of Public Enterprises and Public Accounts Committee have been made non operational. These are committees which are now headed by members of the government, with instructions on what should be done.

The amendments abolished the Constitutional Council established to ensure the independence of appointments, transfers and removal of persons to the Judiciary and to the police, bribery, finance, elections and human rights commissions. The independent oversight body has been replaced by a toothless Parliamentary Council whose observations the President must seek but need not act upon in making these key appointments.

(5) Moreover the long years of war, with the country fractured along ethnic, cultural, language and religious divides, has seen many elements of Sri Lanka’s media present stories that are biased in favor of one side or another. We believe this needs to be changed.

(6) We believe that it is not only the people of one country that keep their own government honest, but also the people of other countries who are watching that government through the media.

(7) The UN Declaration of Human Rights is universal. It was not as oft said, intended to be hostage to political fortune or the anxieties and vagaries of a given age.

(8) The right to free speech means nothing if it only sanctions politically and socially acceptable views. It is the right that allows us to defend all other rights.

(9) We believe embracing the principles of journalism means we must place the principles of journalism above politics. Those principles can be summed up in one word: Respect. Respect for truth. Respect for the public’s right to know. Respect for the views of others.

Corrections policy

If the Colombo Telegraph  recognizes that it has unintentionally published false or misleading information on the web site, the Editors will publish corrections , and bring them to the attention of the author of the material. Anyone who feels that a posted material is false is encouraged to notify the Editors of the website immediately.

Colombo Telegraph offers a right to reply for any individual or organisation who feels they have been misreported on Colombo Telegraph.

Contact us

colombotelegraph@gmail.com

Discussion

6 thoughts on “About us

  1. Would love to know the name of the editor of the Colombo Telegraph! With no physical address, Colombo Telegraph appears to be floating along cyber spare – nameless and faceless!!! Isn’t that great for media freedom – “publish and be damned”. Although the name reads as “Colombo Telegraph”, I wonder whether the editor is living in Sri Lanka at all.

    Reading you mission statement, it appears to be one-sided – meaning extremely anti-Rajapakse. Is it because they defeated the terrorists? (Not to be confused with the poor, helpless, terrorized Tamils who were living in the North-East, who had to sacrifice their lives for the sake of Eelam, until they were liberated in 2009).

    Of course its great to write about media freedom and suppression of the media, etc in such a holistic manner. But your rhetoric does not match what you publish in the name of “free media” It is nameless, faceless people like you, who give a bad name to the entire concept of “media freedom”.

    What you practice is the “freedom of the wild ass” – attacking your hated politicians without taking responsibility for what you publish – in order to reach your hidden agenda which is quite obvious to anyone who can read between the lines – to bring about a regime change in Sri Lanka, so that the ultimate goal of “Eelam” can be achieved – which is the dream of the pro-LTTE diaspora, although they will never visit or live in Sri Lanka. Your Tiger tail is showing. Your hatred is showing. You want REVENGE.

    Posted by L de Mel | February 5, 2012, 1:19 pm
  2. send me your news

    Posted by Colombage | March 14, 2012, 6:13 am

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Pingback: Wikileaks: „Rajapaksas sind ungebildete Schurken“ – CBK « LTTEwatch Deutschland - October 12, 2011

  2. Pingback: We are blocked but we will not be stopped « Colombo Telegraph - December 26, 2011

  3. Pingback: Colombo Telegraph blocked by Lanka but defiant | Thuppahi's Blog - January 2, 2012

  4. Pingback: What is considered good blogging? | kadadie - February 3, 2012

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