What is the MFC?

The Media Freedom Coalition is a partnership of countries working together proactively to advocate for media freedom at home and abroad. The MFC also advocates for the safety of journalists and media workers, and holds to account those who harm journalists and severely restrict them from doing their job.

The MFC does this through a combination of advocacy, diplomatic interventions, encouraging and supporting legal reforms, international events, and making funds available for media freedom initiatives.

The MFC was established in July 2019 at the Global Conference for Media Freedom and now comprises over 50 member states from six continents. MFC member states work closely with civil society (through the Consultative Network), legal experts (through the High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom) and other international bodies such as UNESCO, as well as journalists and media workers themselves.

Read the MFC’s Terms of Reference here.

Why does the MFC exist?

Media freedom is an integral element of democracy, global security and prosperity. People need free and independent media to provide them with accurate information and informed analysis if governments and other powerful actors are to be held to account. The free exchange of views and information allows communities to identify and pursue emerging opportunities and to recognise problems that must be addressed.

Yet media freedom faces growing threats around the world. Challenges include restrictive laws, punitive legal measures, arbitrary and/or unlawful surveillance, censorship, undue interference in the circulation of information online, physical violence and online harassment. These are exacerbated by financial challenges, which jeopardize media independence and sustainability, and by the prominence of mis- and disinformation, which erodes public trust in, and support for, a free media.

Governments, which are responsible for protecting human rights, are too often the source of threats to media freedom. The unique added value of the Media Freedom Coalition is its access to governments, and its ability to intervene at the highest level with the governments of countries where media freedom is at risk, while showing solidarity with countries that work to improve media freedom.