September 14, 2023

Staff Report


The Digital Rights Foundation (DRF) hosted its conference ‘Celebrating Resilient Voices in the Media’ at the Marriott Hotel on September 15 (today). The event was a tribute to the DRF’s endeavors with women journalists across Pakistan through its flagship Network of Women Journalists for Digital Rights (NWJDR).

Journalists, civil society activists, political representatives and other stakeholders convened to discuss the media landscape in Pakistan, in particular the challenges faced by women journalists. It also provided a platform to celebrate their triumphs against a backdrop of persistent adversities.

The conference spotlighted DRF’s achievements in conducting over a thousand workshops on diverse journalistic skills, founding Pakistan’s premier feminist e-magazine Digital 50.50, and launching annual retreats for the collective well-being of women journalists.

Ms. Lotte Hofste, 1st Secretary of Political Affairs for the Netherlands Embassy emphasized the importance of gender balance in media, while expressing concerns over increased online threats against female journalists.

Executive Director DRF Nighat Dad stated that the conference was a celebration of the organization’s women journalist network which was established in 2017. She also cast a spotlight on the resilience of seasoned female journalists in navigating Pakistan’s male-dominated media spaces.

The first panel, ‘Unpacking the Mosaic of Digital 50.50’, chaired by DRF Programme Manager Maryam Saeed, spotlighted the experiences of women journalists and the illustrative artistry of Digital 50.50. ‘Digital Rights for Journalists and Media Practitioners: Where Are We Headed?’, moderated by journalist and Editor of Geo Fact Check Benazir Shah, examined the evolution of media in Pakistan. Zainab Durrani, Programme Manager and Researcher at DRF, led the final session ‘From Cyberbullying to Legal Action’, which addressed the online persecution of journalists.


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