MAJ Submission (Broadcasting Commission 2015-2016 Operational Plan Retreat) PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 05 November 2014 00:00

The Media Association Jamaica Limited (MAJ) thanks the Broadcasting Commission for the opportunity to share our thoughts and concerns regarding issues that we deem paramount in your deliberations over the next year. We ask that you consider this submission, in conjunction with the MAJ’s earlier submissions to the Minister with responsibility for information with regard to proposed policy changes recommended by the Broadcasting Commission.

Symposium - A Framework for Media Self-Regulation PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 00:00

The following are the MAJ Chairman's remarks given at a Symposium themed "A Framework for Media Self-Regulation" held at CARIMAC on October 29, 2014 hosted by the ACM Education Committee:


The MAJ is in full support of responsible media and more importantly responsible journalism in Jamaica. We believe that a media which is fair to all and balanced is critical for development of this nation and it's people.  Our role is to inform on all things in the public interest and bring transparency to public affairs to ferret out corruption. We are Jamaica's biggest ally in the search of truth. Do we get it right all of the time? Surely not, there is many an obstacle in the way of our search for truth and stamping out corruption, including libel laws which while modernized very recently, do not give media a greater power to tackle corruption than we had before. And then there are the corrupt themselves who will employ all sorts of measures and tactics to frustrate media efforts. This unfortunately means that sometimes, in our determined effort to bring truth to light, our journalists get it wrong or without the ability to reveal sources we are made to look like we got it wrong.

Written Submission to the Joint Select Committee of the Houses of Parliament on the Cybercrimes Act PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 20 March 2013 00:00


It is alarming that at a time when there is a worldwide trend to remove criminal libel from the law books that there could be, in Jamaica, any suggestion of taking the retrograde step of further codifying criminal libel, albeit in a different legal vehicle. One does not have to look very far to see evidence of this trend. In France, the Court of Cassation abolished its criminal libel law in January 2009, following domestic and international outcries at the arrest in December 2008 of an investigative journalist. Mexico abolished criminal libel in 2006. In September 2010, the Ugandan Constitutional Court abolished sedition and criminal libel. While in the United States, criminal libel is no longer a federal crime although it still exists on the statute books of a few states. (Reform of Jamaican Libel Law Briefing prepared for the Joint Select Legislative Committee of the House of Parliament by Mark Stephens- September 2010)

About Jamaica Debates Commission (2011) PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 05 November 2011 03:05

The Jamaica Debates Commission (JDC)  is an independent non-profit organization - legally established as a partnership between the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC) and the Media Association Jamaica Limited (MAJ).  The Commission, which was established in 2002, is made up of six Commissioners equally appointed by the partner organizations.   The Commissioners appointed by the JCC are Philmore Ogle, Noel daCosta and Anthony Chang and those appointed by the MAJ are Gary Allen, Brian Schmidt and Jennifer Grant.  The Commission is presently chaired by Gary Allen.  Noel daCosta is the Vice-Chairman and the past Chairman is Philmore Ogle.  The Jamaica Debates Commission was responsible for the staging of the 2002 and 2007 National Political Debates.   The Commission is supported by Trevor Fearon and Dr. Eleanor Henry providing key resource requirements and by Paula Graham-Haynes providing executive administrative assistance.   The JDC is responsible for planning political debates including establishing formats, engaging panelists and questioners, inviting the participation of political representatives, guiding the topics for debates, securing the funding for the debates as well as engaging the radio and television production services required for the debates.

Position Paper on Payola PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 15 October 2011 01:30

The Media Association Jamaica Limited (MAJ) notes the several comments and proposals of the Broadcasting Commission of Jamaica on the practice known as PAYOLA and wishes to make our position known.

For several reasons, which will become clearer later in this paper, the MAJ and its members DO NOT support nor do we endorse the practice of PAYOLA.  Our members are of the view that the practice is, first and foremost corrupt, and IS ALREADY CONFIRMED as illegal by the Corruption Prevention Act 2000. 

Response of MAJ to the Nordicity Report on Reforming Jamaica's Broadcasting Regulations PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 18 July 2011 00:00

“The role of a modern electronic media regulator is to support the development of a dynamic broadcasting and media industry that enables the creation, distribution and promotion of indigenous content and reflects national, social and cultural values back to the public as well as to the rest of the world” –Nordicity Report, pg. 4

This “role” as set out in the report and apparently accepted by the broadcasting regulator, goes to the heart of a fundamental concern that the commercial media sector has with the positioning and ultimately the direction of the proposed changes to regulation – it does not articulate a business model for a viable and sustainable sector.  In fact, in its pure articulation, the stated “role” fails to articulate a position in support of viability, competitiveness and profitability.  Our submission is grounded in the fact that without viability, none of the principles articulated can be sustainable and so a critical component of proposed change and reform is not to be driven by profit maximization, but to facilitate viability and growth.

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