‘Post’ reporter, Latma site win award for media criticism

Khaled Abu Toameh and satirical news site win Israel's Media Watch 2011 prize.

Khaled Abu Toameh 311 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Khaled Abu Toameh 311
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Jerusalem Post reporter Khaled Abu Toameh is one of two winners of Israel’s Media Watch’s 2011 award for media criticism, the organization announced on Sunday.
The right-wing satirical news site Latma was a co-winner of the award. The Jerusalem Post's Senior Contributing Editor Caroline B. Glick is the founder and editor in chief of Latma, which achieved a great deal of publicity last year when a satirical video it released in the wake of the Gaza flotilla raid titled, "We Con the World," racked up over five million views.
Both Latma and Abu Toameh will receive a $5,000 cash prize, which will be awarded at a ceremony to be held by IMW in February.
According to IMW, “Abu Toameh publishes articles and gives lectures which are typified by a very critical stance on the Israeli and the foreign media, which, he says, does not understand its role or the Palestinian issues which it reports on.”
The IMW added that Abu Toameh has “a refreshing approach to news” and “doesn’t hesitate to touch nerves” in the field he covers.
According to IMW’s website, the organization’s goal is “strengthening and realizing Israel’s democracy by informing the Israeli public about various media outlets and the extent to which they abide by the media codes of ethics, decency and objectivity in reporting.”
IMW says it does so through “systematic research and surveillance of the media and exposure of political and cultural media bias,” and by “deepening public and institutional involvement in upholding the media codes of ethics, and defending the private citizen against the increasing power of the media against him or her.”
The award has been given out for the past 11 years, each time to two individuals or organizations that “made courageous, meaningful, and quality contributions to the criticism of the media in Israel.”
Unlike previous years, it was decided that one winner would be decided by an online vote, in which 4,000 users voted. Of the candidates, Latma was far and away the largest vote-getter.
Abu Toameh was chosen by a committee of judges appointed by IMW.