- Published on Friday, 01 August 2014 03:07
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2013 was an inspiring year for CCIM, as it underscored the importance of the media’s role in Cambodia – especially that of social media. Throughout the year, Voice of Democracy (VOD) reported on many significant events, such as human rights violations and the pre- and post-election protests and political maneuvers. But even in the midst of these critically newsworthy events, the government kept firm control over the country’s media outlets, with only a few independent radio programs managing to regularly broadcast neutral information – notably including CCIM’s VOD broadcasts through Sarika FM.
The controlled nature of the mainstream media led the public to turn to social media in unprecedented numbers, looking to Facebook for alternative sources of independent and timely information. And VOD was there to meet them, sending out breaking news alerts that spread through the country’s growing social media sphere like wildfire.
This led to a historic shift in the electorate, as more youth than ever before participated actively and openly in political campaigns and took notice-some for the first time of the country’s struggle for freedom of expression. For CCIM, and for the country’s other media actors, it was a point of pride to contribute to this remarkable and historic change in Cambodia.
As a media organization, CCIM continued in 2013 to produce independent radio programs via our VOD production house for our two Sarika FM radio stations in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. We also expanded our online news and saw remarkable growth in our social media presence. Now a truly multi-media news organization, CCIM used all of these channels and more to provide independent information and media access to a public hungry for unbiased news coverage.
CCIM also cooperated with partners to address and promote democratic governance and Freedom of expression in Cambodia, with a particular emphasis on advocating for Access to Information legislation. Our Information Communications Technology (ICT) project promoted independent online News and information security while developing and educating citizen journalists. Our election project promoted free and fair elections through community forums and investigative reports into election irregularities.
These were challenging tasks that could never have been achieved without the strong commitment and courage of CCIM staff members and reporters who faced the very real risks that come with working for an independent media outlet in Cambodia. The support our donors and partners — and in particular Diakonia, DanChurchAid / ChristianAid and the Open Society Foundations — was also essential.
2013 is over, but many challenges remain. Cambodia’s political situation is still uncertain, and violence is on the rise. Hence, we must strengthen our efforts and commitment to reach the goals set out for 2014 as part of our three-year Strategic Management Plan.
Click HERE to download the report.