SOPA Voices Concern Over Rising Pressures on Independent Hong Kong Media
In the past week, two Hong Kong independent media outlets, Stand News and Citizen News, have closed down; Stand News after former and current executives were arrested by national security police and its assets frozen; Citizen News announced its closure today, citing the safety of its staff as reason.
Both organizations have been recognized by their editorial peers for the journalistic quality of their work, winning awards and honorable mentions at the annual SOPA Awards, for entries ranging from infographics to feature writing. Stand News won 1 award, 4 honorable mentions and 1 finalist in total over its seven-year history, while Citizen News received 1 award and 1 honorable mention in the four years of its operations.
SOPA, the Society of Publishers in Asia, regrets the closure of these media outlets, which follows the shut-down of Apple Daily, and notes with concern the rising pressures on independent local media following the introduction of the National Security Law in July 2020.
The publishing industry in Hong Kong needs a viable independent media sector to flourish, create jobs and support our city as a business and financial center. We call on the Hong Kong authorities to respect freedom of expression and the press which are vital to the success of our industry.
Stand News SOPA Awards:
2021 Excellence in Human Rights Reporting “Award for Excellence” Chinese
2021 Excellence in Human Rights Reporting “Honorable Mention” Chinese
2021 Excellence in Feature Writing “Honorable Mention” Chinese
2021 Excellence in Information Graphics “Honorable Mention” Chinese
2021 Excellence in Information Graphics “Finalist” Chinese
2018 Excellence in Feature Writing “Honorable Mention” Chinese
Citizen News SOPA Awards:
2020 Excellence in Information Graphics “Honorable Mention” Chinese
2018 Excellence in Explanatory Reporting “Award for Excellence” Chinese