The quest for gathering accurate information and protecting those who seek to disseminate it should always be a priority. This information, after all, can inspire countless numbers of individuals to understand their worlds, to promote knowledge societies, and to take action to improve their local and not-so-local surroundings. And--as history has consistently shown--the highest caliber of information often comes when individuals collaborate and constantly analyze what is distributed.
Given the importance of these practices, even a cursory look at UNESCO's initiatives encouraging collaborative, participatory media is encouraging. The initiatives are well worth reviewing. From the current World Summit on the Information Society to the Director-General's public condemnation of the murder of journalists and media professionals, UNESCO has striven to foster unhindered communication and best practices worldwide. More information on current initiatives can be found here.
One recent publication particularly worth noting is UNESCO's publication regarding the importance of civic education is one of the many ways the organization shows its realization that media shapes development around the world. See more information on this publication here.
This and other publications are valuable for anyone within or outside the media. Fighting for the right to gather and distribute information is important in any field, and being aware of what is being done to protect knowledge societies is essential if they are to be built or maintained.