Australian journalist Peter Greste’s two Al Jazeera colleagues Baher Mohamed and Mohamed Fahmy have been pardoned by Egypt president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and released in Cairo today.
Presidency spokesman Alaa Youssef said the two Al Jazeera journalists were among 100 prisoners pardoned.
Fahmy and Mohamed were sentenced in a retrial to three years jail last month – along with Greste – for allegedly fabricating “false” news in support of the Muslim Brotherhood movement, which was removed from power by the army in 2013.
Fahmy’s lawyer, Amal Clooney, was delighted at news of the pardon. “This is a historic day in Egypt where the government has finally corrected a longstanding injustice,” she said in a statement.
The conviction against Greste still stands, although he has been deported to Australia. Greste is still hoping for a pardon as the conviction restricts his ability to travel and work.
His case for a pardon has been taken up by the Australian government.
UK papers face possible merger
UK multimedia publisher Trinity Mirror has made plans to buy rival publisher Local World, the News Media Association reports
Trinity Mirror currently owns 20 per cent of shares in the company, and will become the biggest regional publisher in the UK if the acquisition is successful.
A statement issued by the company said that no agreement has yet been made.
“The Board of Trinity Mirror plc notes the recent media speculation and confirms that it is in discussions with Local World Holdings Limited for the potential acquisition of the shares not already owned by Trinity Mirror plc. There is no certainty that any agreement will be reached,” the statement read.
Trinity Mirror currently owns major daily newspaper titles in Manchester, Coventry, Cardiff, Birmingham, Newcastle, and Liverpool,.
Combined, the two publishers produce a total of around 100 newspapers across print and digital platforms.
Facebook offers journalists a better way to source content
Journalists can now gather news more easily from Facebook and Instagram, with the launch of Signal.
The free discovery and curation program enables journalists to “find, source, and embed content” across the two platforms, NiemanLab reports.
Facebook’s director of media partnerships Andy Mitchell said the launch of Signal was a response to the requests of journalists.
“We’ve heard from journalists that they want an easy way to make Facebook a more vital part of their newsgathering with the ability to surface relevant trends, photos, videos, and posts on Facebook and Instagram for use in their storytelling and reporting,” he said in a blog post.
Last week, Facebook made available its Mentions app to verified journalists, which enables them to look up mentions of themselves. Previously, this feature was only available to well-known figures.
Print newspaper inspires redesign of Washington Post website
The Washington Post has attempted to replicate the power of a newspaper’s front page in its website redesign.
The homepage of the site bears similarities to a traditional front page, with large visuals and headlines.
The Post’s font Postoni is used, and a weather dashboard is also included on the homepage.
Joey Marburger, director of digital products at The Post, believes this redesign will make it easier for readers to navigate the site.
“The Post’s homepage is a destination for many readers and we wanted create a page that lets them quickly see what the day’s big stories are and easily navigate to other top content on the site,” he said in a statement.
“We’ve built this page so it can transform and evolve. If news warrants, readers could see an entirely different homepage look every day of the week.”