May 9, 1996 Vol . 6, No. 1

All the news you didn't hear:

Project Censored's top 10 list

A list of the news stories you were least likely to hear about in 1995 is topped by a story on how a proposed U.S. environmental law could harm Canada's air and water.

That's according to Project Censored Canada, which produces an annual list of the top 10 under-reported news stories. The project, in its third year, involves communication faculty and students from Simon Fraser University and the University of Windsor, as well as members of the Canadian Association of Journalists.

The top story, which originated in The Windsor Star, is about a U.S. bill passed last May which lifts protection for wetlands and allows states to opt out of environmental water regulations deemed too expensive or unenforceable.

Other stories selected by a national panel of judges, including journalists, authors and academics, deal with a range of health, defence, financial and human rights issues. Among them are stories on: Criteria for consideration includes whether the story significantly affects a large number of people, how much coverage it received, how well it was documented, and whether identifying the story through the project would encourage further media and public attention.

A short list of 16 stories was produced by a team of SFU students, who researched each of the stories. "We're hoping this list will stimulate journalists and the public to find out more about these stories," says Donald Gutstein, a communication lecturer at SFU and project co-director. Project Censored Canada is modelled after a project in the U.S.


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