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Detail from a cartoon on The Nation online. To see the whole cartoon, click on the link at the end of the article

Phuket Defamation Case: The End of the Affair, Says Bill Barnett

Saturday, December 28, 2013
PHUKET: The recent legal issue between online news site Phuketwan.com and branches of the government is something that media needs to take very seriously.

I grew up in the day and age of the Washington Post and the Pentagon Papers. Woodward and Bernstein's Watergate masterpiece and the downfall of the morally corrupt administration of Richard Nixon remain etched in my memory.

Here in Phuket we live on a small island and yet there remains a robust thirst for information and news.

My mind remains keen to see what's new, or exciting and this takes me on journey's between The Phuket Gazette, The Phuket News and Phuketwan. As do my regular journey's upcountry to the Bangkok Post and Nation.

Diversity in media is one of its strongest draws and this removes us from the cave men who basically ate a similar meal day in and day out their entire lives.

The issues which have drawn Phuketwan into this fray are profound and disturbing. There should be no need to wax over reality and respect needs to be given to those who stand up for the helpless who cannot help themselves.

Over the past few years we've seen journalism take a beating from the streets of Cairo, the tree lined venues of Washington D.C. to the drug slums of Mexico; and those working in the field fighting the good fight have become targets of both violence and political influence.

News remains a much needed check of our own moral compasses and of a counter check for a much needed conscience, despite the quick and easy draw of an island paradise.

At the end of the day, news and the ones who write it remain our only conduit between the often harsh grim reality of life and the glossed over imaginary life of a man-made Oz.

thephuketinsider.com

Other journalists on Phuket have expressed their personal individual support. More than 100 articles have been published around the world, all in support of Phuketwan.

The United Nations, Human Rights Watch, Reporters Without Borders, the Committee to Protect Journalists, the Southeast Asian Press Alliance, the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand and Australia's Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance have all called on the Royal Thai Navy to withdraw its criminal defamation action.

The Bangkok Post has published several damning editorials and carried regular updates. The Nation carried a superb cartoon. Thai television and newspaper journalists have reported extensively about the case. It was examined at a seminar at the Thai Journalists' Association in Bangkok, with universal support for Phuketwan.


Reporters Prepared for Prison:
http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/local/387125/reporters-prepared-for-prison-in-navy-defamation-lawsuit/

The Full Cartoon from The Nation:
http://www.nationmultimedia.com/specials/nationphoto/show.php?id=30&pid=16667/

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Phuketwan highlighted about the misery of Rohingya boat people more than other newspaper in Thailand .They have done non partial news of trafficking. They deserve real appreciation and more international prizes. We must have to stand near by them. They must get fare treatment from Thai society .

Posted by Maung Kyaw Nu,President,Burmese Rohingya Association in Thailand (BRAT) on December 30, 2013 21:38


Wednesday December 13, 2017
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