Business Game Changers Radio with Sarah Westall: Whistle Blower Persecution causes U.S. to plunge to 49th in the World Press Freedom Index

  11/09/2015  12:00 pm PDT

Reporters Without Borders publishes the World Press Freedom Index each year to determine the status of freedom of the press (i.e. the right to print and distribute information freely) inside 180 countries that it researches. The 2015 index shows some disturbing trends developing as the entire world dropped as a whole in press freedom. The United States currently sits at 49th out of 180 nations. Not so great for our country that claims to be the “Land of the Free” and where freedom of speech is a constitutional right. 

This episode features Dalphine Halgand, U.S. division head for the Reporters without Borders organization. Dalphine explains the U.S. ranking and discusses the Reporters without Borders organization and who supports them. We also discuss the many press freedom issues around the world, how it affects commerce at every level in a country, and ultimately how it can break down or lead to greater prosperity. 

Another disturbing trend that we cover is how governments are increasingly using National Security as a reason to reduce press freedom. The United States does this by classifying documents in mass thus making it impossible for the public to know where their tax dollars are going and what decisions are being made by their elected officials, or worse, non elected officials. The U.S. also has mass surveillance and other programs in the works that ultimately leads to the deterioration of our freedoms. 

Perhaps Benjamin Franklin says it best, “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety”. 

Lastly we talk about the role business plays in freedom of the press. Corporations naturally want and need positive press to be successful. This is understandable but problems arise when few corporations own the media organizations. This ultimately leads to unbalanced influence and power, which can be wielded to further their own agendas at the expense of press freedom. This is a problem when agendas are to take over markets or control world politics for their own benefit. 

You can see the 2015 World Press Freedom Index rankings, research, and other information at Reporters Without Border’s Website:  


Sarah Westall

BUSINESS GAME CHANGERS 12PM PT / 3PM ET Business Game Changers with Host Sarah Westall covers the big issues, disruptions, and cutting edge innovation. Each episode bri...

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Delphine Halgand

Delphine has been working as the Director of the Washington DC office for Reporters Without Borders since December 2011. She runs the US activities for the organization and ...

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