The Annual Barents Press International Conference in April Haparanda appeared unforgettable. According to many in attendance it was one of the best. We are very grateful to the hosts – Barents Press Sweden! What do the young participants think back about? Here’re some viewpoints from different countries.
How can media not lose readers, listeners and viewers and not lose their social role in society? Is journalism to die or to become a new "business niche"? These issues were discussed by journalists from Norway, Finland, Sweden and Russia at the annual conference of the journalistic network Barents Press International in late April in the Swedish city of Haparanda.
Discrimination on national basis
As a result of reforms which will occur in the Karelian publishing house «Periodika» since January, 2011 the magazine for children «Kipinä» ("Sparkle") will be puplished not only in Finnish, but also in Vepsan and two dialects of the Karelian language. Russian-speaking children and teenagers of Karelia may lose a similar edition financed from the budget.
Not so long ago in the publishing house which exists on tax money there was a discussion about publishing «Kipinä» in Russian as well. But this initiative did'n meet support among the magazine's founders.
Also since the new year the cultural-educational newspaper "Licey" its appendix for children and teenagers «My newspaper +» will be closed.
As a result of all these reforms Russian-speaking children and teenagers of Karelia - who make the overwhelming majority in comparison with Karelian and Vepsan coevals — will be deprived of the possibility to read and publish journalistic and literary works. I consider that it is purposeful discrimination of Russian children on national basis.
Nikolay Abramov, journalist of Vepsan newspaper 'Kodima',
writer, international literary award winner
Translated by Tatiana Polkova