RAPPLER’S MARIA RESSA AMONG TIME’S PERSON OF THE YEAR 2018
MANILA, Philippines — Rappler executive Maria Ressa has been named TIME magazine’s Person of the Year.
Aside from Ressa, other journalists are also chosen as this year’s Person of the Year. TIME also picked slain Saudi journalist Jamal Kashoggi, jailed Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, and the staff of Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland.
The magazine featured journalists “who were targeted for their work.” They were dubbed as “The Guardians” — a collection of journalists who are facing challenges and persecution for speaking out.
“As we looked at the choices it became clear that the manipulation and abuse of truth is really the common thread in so many of this year’s major stories, from Russia to Riyadh to Silicon Valley,” Time editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal said.
TIME chose four individuals, including Ressa, and one group “who have taken great risks in pursuit of greater truth.”
Ressa’s challenges and tax allegations are presented in TIME’s article “The Guardians and the War on Truth”: “In the Philippines, a 55-year-old woman named Maria Ressa steers Rappler, an online news site she helped found, through a superstorm of the two most formidable forces in the information universe: social media and a populist President with authoritarian inclinations. Rappler has chronicled the violent drug war and extrajudicial killings of President Rodrigo Duterte that have left some 12,000 people dead, according to a January estimate from Human Rights Watch. The Duterte government refuses to accredit a Rappler journalist to cover it, and in November charged the site with tax fraud, allegations that could send Ressa to prison for up to 10 years.”
“I’ve been a war zone correspondent, I’ve planned coverage when one side is shooting against the other side…That is easy compared to what we’re dealing with now,” Ressa said.