Winners unable to attend the ceremony taking place during the Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum.
The Cuban blogger Yoani Sánchez, winner of the international weblog awards, The BOBs, won’t be able to attend the awards ceremony in Bonn. Authorities in Havana have apparently rejected her request to attend the event. She was supposed to receive the award within the framework of the Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum on June 4. Based on the latest information from Germany’s international broadcaster, the winner of the best Chinese blog, Liu Xiaoyuan, and the winner of the Reporters Without Borders Award, Zeng Jinyan, will also be missing out on the event. Deutsche Welle has also learned that Zeng Jinyan remains under house arrest. She is the wife of the detained human rights activist Hu Jia. She uses her blog to describe having a life that is constantly under surveillance from the Chinese authorities.
In November 2008, just days before the winners of the Deutsche Welle Blog Awards were to be announced, the Chinese jury member Shuguang Zhou was restricted from travelling to Germany.
In her winning blog “Generacíon Y“, the renown blogger Sánchez reports on the daily life of the younger generation in Cuba. In a recent interview she stated: “We are surrounded by a wall of control, a monopolistic wall, that the government has placed around the information. In Cuba, we are like little children who need daddy’s approval before we can leave the house.”
The following winners from The BOBs will be receiving their awards at the ceremony on June 4:
The Iranian actress Pegah Ahangarani will be receiving the award in place of The BOBs winners from Cuba and China, who won’t be able to attend the event on June 4. She wrote a blog for Deutsche Welle earlier this year, covering her impressions from the Berlinale.
Last year, Internet users from around the world suggested more than 8,500 blogs for the Deutsche Welle Weblog Awards in 11 languages. An international jury made up of journalists, media scientists and bloggers chose the winners from those suggestions.
Panel discussion with bloggers about “citizen journalism & freedom of speech”
Prior to the awards ceremony on June 4, The BOBs winners Nancy Watzman, Olivier Nyirugubara, Israël Yoroba Guébo and Nazli Farokhi will discuss “citizen journalism & freedom of speech” at 2:30 p.m. They will take on topics like the growing importance of blogs, especially in countries with limited freedom of the press.
June 3, 2009