confusion over pina 09 theme

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Confusion appears to have set in between regional media body PINA and its national counterpart in Vanuatu.

Two different conference themes are now on the table.

This follows a press release last week from MAV, Media Asosiesen Blong Vanuatu and an update yesterday to the website of PINA, the Pacific Islands News Association.

In its press release last week, MAV declared a biennual conference theme of “Breaking Barriers, Access To Information”.

Yesterday, however, PINA updated its website to include a frontpage link to the conference – and said inside that the theme was “Media Freedom, the Heart of Pacific Development.”

No word yet on why there are two different themes, but both PINA and MAV are being contacted for comment.

Early analysis suggests the MAV theme might be too ‘controversial’ for PINA with its reference to “breaking barriers.”

By comparison, the ‘media freedom’ angle is possibly more aid and sponsor-friendly – as well as referring to a theme PINA has maintained for decades.

Inside the industry, one of the barriers to accessing information has been the chilling effect of aid on freedoms of speech.

Against that, it is thought to be the first time that PINA has placed media freedoms at the centre or ‘heart’ of islands development.

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