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World Press Freedom Day 2010 Debate

09 April 2010

Venue: Frontline Club, 13 Norfolk Place, London W2 1QJ

Friday 9 April, 10:00-12:00 (doors open at 9:30 for tea/coffee) 

Read a write-up  of the event and watch the debate video here.

Follow this event on Twitter at

Can’t make it to the Frontline Club on 9 April? Watch the debate live online here! You can also contribute to the debate via Twitter as it’s happening. Just be sure to use the tag #WPFdebate in all your remarks. They’ll be displayed in real time at the debate to generate responses from the panel.

This year's debate motion is "Unregulated political comment online helps the democratic process." This event is organised by the UK National Commission for UNESCO and the Press Freedom Network, with the support of the Frontline Club and the BBC College of Journalism.

Registration now open. This event is free, but registration is essential. To register email Ian White at worldpressfreedom [at] or phone 020 766 3492.

How will online journalism affect this year’s UK General Election? For good or bad, it is certain the internet will carry more breaking news, more character attacks and more contentious comment than ever before. The bloggers will be busy and their stories, true or not so true, will spread like wildfire.

We have also had the arrival, since the last election, of online TV and radio channels, some of them run by newspapers, especially News International’s, which run to heavy political agendas without any regulation or legal requirements on fairness. Will all this be good for democracy and the fair conduct of the election, or not? Where will it leave the strictly regulated public broadcasting sector?

Join us for this year’s World Press Freedom Day debate as we debate the question, is unregulated political comment online helps the democratic process?

Speakers List

For debate motion

  • Sir Robert Worcester MORI/Ipsos Group; University of Kent
  • Sunny HundalLiberal Conspiracy

Against debate motion

  • Caroline ThomsonChief Operating Officer, BBC
  • Prof Steven Barnett University of Westminster

Named speakers

  • Paul BradshawBirmingham City University; Online Journalism Blog (OJB)
  • Nicholas Jones Author, previously BBC


  • William HorsleyUK National Commission for UNESCO; Centre for Freedom of the Media (CFOM)

The 2010 World Press Freedom Day debate adopts its format from an Oxford Union Debate. Proceedings aim to inform and persuade through the skills of debating on a particular view. A good deal of participation from the floor is encouraged, with the proceedings concluding with a vote on the Motion: “Unregulated political comment online helps the democratic process”. There will be four panel speakers and two interventions from named speakers from the floor.

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Media attachments

  • Image Gallery

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    • Image: WPFD 2010 - Panel

      WPFD 2010 - Panel

    • Image: View of WPFD 2010 Panel

      View of WPFD 2010 Panel

    • Image: 2010 WPFD - Audience members question the Panel

      2010 WPFD - Audience members question the Panel

    • Image: 2010 WPFD - questions from Twitter users

      2010 WPFD - questions from Twitter users

    • Image: WPFD 2010 - Vote

      WPFD 2010 - Vote

    • Image: Press Freedom Network logo

    • Image: BBC College of Journalism logo

    • Image: Newspaper in chains

  • Movies

    • 2010 World Press Freedom Day debate

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