Semi-annual report 2004

Nominations for the Leipzig Media Award 2005

The following persons have been nominated as of 14 June, 2004 for the 30,000 Euro Leipzig "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media": Seymour Hersh, Leonid Parfjonov, Sehim Bensedrine, Paolo Rumiz, Luzia Annunziata, Emilio Silva, Basha Mika, Anna Politkovskaya and Alice Schwarzer. Proposal deadline: 31 October, 2004.

Seymour Hersh whose career started with revelations about the Vietnam massacre of My Lai in 1969 recently reported on systematic tortures in Iraq's American prisons in The New Yorker.
Leonid Parfjonov informed the public about censorship of his program Namedni and was fired on the spot, the program was cancelled.
Sehim Bensedrine witnessed the occupied Iraq as Tunisian journalist. During her work she has been experienced permanent observation and spying.
Paolo Rumiz (La Republicca) is one of the most important chroniclers of the "new Europe" - especially of the Balkans.
Luzia Annunziata stepped down from her position as RAI President because of permanent pressure by certain political circles.
Emilio Silva broke a taboo: He wrote about the so far neglected existence of mass graves from the times of the Spanish Civil War and crimes done by the Franco dictatorship.
Anna Politkovskaya bravely and single-mindedly reported on the Chechnian war. The warmongers are annoyed by her bare reports and it doesn't surprise that she got mortal threats.
Bascha Mika led the taz (the daily), which holds itself without company support for 25 years on the market, by difficult times, without losing thereby at creativity (among other things the special on the anniversary 2003 in co-operation with BILD or the again and again quoted headlines of the taz).
As journalist, lecturer and publisher Alice Schwarzer has contributed a lot to strongly revise the obsolete women's image of the Germans.

PLEASE NOTE! Proposal deadline for the "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media" 2005 is 31 October, 2004. Qualified proposals are welcome at any time. More information: The decision on the prize winners 2005 will be made by the foundation council at the end of the year.

Media Prize 2005: All Laureates invited for 2005

Next year, the "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media" will be awarded the fifth time. On that occasion, the Media Foundation is going to invite all former laureates to Leipzig. The 5-year meeting at Leipzig shall become a tradition. In it's focus there is of course next year's awarding of the "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media" that shall take place on 28 April, 2004. This anniversary meeting is supplemented by a public symposium.

Extension of initiatives for research and training

From next year, research done at the "Institute for Practical Research on Journalism" will be extended by a third doctorate grant provided by the Sparkasse Leipzig. The institute is a common project of Leipzig's University, the Media Foundation of Sparkasse and the Insurance Company of the Sparkasse. Scientific Director is Professor Michael Haller (

The new research project "Latest News and Quality Assurance at Search Engines in the Web" shall give insights how search engines process latest news. It is of special interest to see how latest reports can be found and if strong criteria of journalistic work will be undermined by the deficits of search engines. Meanwhile, the doctorate grant is given. Head of the project is Professor Marcel Machill, MPA (Harvard) (

The Media Foundation wants to contribute to the promotion of Leipzig's young journalists by providing two additional positions for trainees. Although this can be only a drop in the ocean regarding today's disappointing occupational perspectives in the media, it will help two young people to approach their professional aspiration. At the moment, there are discussions with potential institutions. As soon as they are finished, both positions will be advertised. That's why we kindly ask for refraining from sending spontaneous applications to the foundation.

After the project "school of media Leipzig" could not been realised as common project of the city of Leipzig, the Free State of Saxony, the Leipzig University and of three other Leipzig colleges, the Leipzig University, the Leipzig University of Applied Sciences and the Media Foundation work on an alternative. The foundation hopes for a fast decision and that the project "Master Program in Media Leipzig" can be realised as soon as possible.

Proceeds from the Nachtwey exhibition: 5,000 Euro go to Journalists help Journalists.

La Voz des Galicia donates prize money to Leipzig journalist students.

With 3,500 visitors the Nachtwey exhibition "War Photographer" was a tremendous success. Proceeds from the exhibition of 5,000 Euro is provided to the association Journalists help Journalists which supports colleagues experiencing difficulties ( James Nachtwey, Journalists help Journalists as well as the Spanish newspaper La Voz de Galicia are this year's winners of the Leipzig Media Award. La Voz spontaneously donated the prize money of 10,000 Euro to two Leipzig journalist students who are invited to a two months practical training at the newspaper in La Coruna. The advertisement is to be found at (click the pinboard).

Responsible according to German Press Law

Stephan Seeger M.A.
Managing Director of the Media Foundation