AFTER 2 YEARS, WHAT'S NEW?
The November 23, 2009 Ampatuan massacre forced many Filipino journalists to take a long, hard second look about safety in the field.
Of course, long before the horrific slaughter in the hills of Sitio Masalay in Ampatuan town, Maguindanao, Filipino journalists had become, as they would jokingly tell each other, an endangered species, with the unabated murder of their colleagues earning the country the dubious distinction of being the most murderous in the world for the profession.
Still, by and large, safety in numbers held true and, notwithstanding the killings, for most, the press card still provided some assurance of security.
Ampatuan changed all that.
Two years after, has anything changed? Is it any safer for the Filipino journalist?
Rowena Paraan, secretary general of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines, and Cotabato-based journalist Ferdinandh Cabrera, an officer of the NUJP chapter there who has covered Maguindanao province extensively, share their thoughts.