This report explores the symbiosis between media safety and media viability. Media safety has long been a concern around the world. Similarly, independent media outlets have for a while now been struggling to stay viable and survive financially, especially in times of COVID-19. This paper aims to illustrate, through research as well as interviews, the connection between safety and viability – to show that there is no viability without safety. The point that is made is that investing in safety and security measures – whether through safety training, safety protocols, advocacy for improved legal frameworks or digital security – not only saves lives but also strengthens the business ecosystem of a media outlet.
Media houses and media organisations that think broadly about security issues from the beginning, establish a safety culture, relate closely to their audience, and provide high quality and balanced journalism are both more resilient and more protected against external attacks. Media outlets that understand the legal and economic environment they are operating in, that know their strengths and also their audience and can set up and adapt their business model in a more flexible way, also have the best preconditions to stay viable.
Authors: Petra Aldenrath, Elisabet Cantenys, Nadine Hoffman, Nadine Jurrat, Daniel Moßbrucker & Elisa Lees Muñoz
Editors: Laura Moore, Petra Aldenrath & Nadine Jurrat