Filmmakers assess freedom of expression in 2020

February 28 2020

Time and venue: 28 February 2020, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m., at Vega Scene, Hausmanns gate 28, Oslo.

Artistic freedom of expression is often an indicator of exactly where we draw the line in a society. Has the work of Norwegian documentalists become more difficult?

While legal protection, norms for artistic freedom and cultural policies can protect freedom of expression, it is assumed that fluctuations in public opinion, political situations, levels of conflict and power structures related to artistic production and the promotion of the arts create challenging situations for filmmakers.

Tore Slaatta and Hanne M. Okstad are engaged in a new research project to explore how filmmakers assess freedom of expression in Norway today. A great deal has happened since the last time this issue was examined, e.g. Metoo, growing polarisation and online harassment, sharper political controversy at the national and international levels alike, and climate issues.

Welcome to a research project in which three filmmakers are going to talk with Professor Tore Slaatta about their experiences and thoughts related to freedom of expression, censorship and self-censorship in their own work and in the communities around them. We will pose the following questions:

When and how do censorship and limitations on freedom of expression arise in cinematography? Are there major differences in the challenges facing makers of fiction films and documentary films? What part does money play? What about the way in which films are produced and distributed, given that both financing and distribution currently take place in an international context?

About the study

Fritt Ord regularly performs studies of the conditions for freedom of expression in Norway. Read more about the latest phase of the research project here. The report from 2014 is available at


Tonje Hessen Schei, director of the documentary film iHuman
Nefise Lorentzen, director of a trilogy on islam and gender, and the film “A Gift from God”.
Sara Johnsen, scriptwriter and director of the TV series “22 July”, together with Pål Sletaune.
Tore Slaatta, director of the consultancy and analytical agency TSL Analytics

Moderator: Karsten Meinich, editor of Montages

Free entry. Organised by Fritt Ord and the HUMAN International Documentary Film Festival.
Link to the Facebook event.


 Fake images. On the left, a fake illustration of Pope Francis. On the right, a fake of presumptive US presidential candidate Donald Trump. Photos from NTB/Phil Holm and

Are deepfakes a threat to media authenticity?

June 15 2024

A new report gives some answers and, for the first time, the use of artificial intelligence in the media has been surveyed all over the world.

The Fritt Ord Foundation, the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at Oxford and the University of Bergen invite the public to the world-wide launch of the Reuters Digital News Report 2024 and the Norwegian report:

Monday, 17 June 2024, 08.30-10.00 a.m.
Uranienborgveien 2, Oslo

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Fritt Ord's grants for master’s degrees

May 15 2024

Is your master’s project about freedom of expression, social debate or journalism? If so, you can apply for a student grant from the Fritt Ord Foundation.


“In an age of fake news, AI, propaganda and manipulation, we must place trust in the photographer himself.” Speeches on the occasion of the awarding of the 2024 Fritt Ord Prize to Harald Henden

May 8 2024

“Each day, more than 3 billion images are uploaded to social media, including photos from conflicts and disasters. However, in an age of fake news, propaganda, manipulation and artificial intelligence, the question is often ‘what can we trust?’" observed Harald Henden upon being awarded the Fritt Ord Prize.
His response is that we must trust the individual photographer. Grete Brochmann, chair of the Fritt Ord Foundation Board, drove home the same point, calling war and documentary photography an integral part of the infrastructure of freedom of expression.


War photographer and prize laureate Harald Henden: “Credibility is journalism's most important capital asset”

May 7 2024

“Credibility is the media’s most important capital asset. That is precisely why the importance of having the media’s own photographers on site has not diminished. In point of fact, it is more important than ever before.
“This is because credibility is also an individual photographer’s most important asset. “When I put my name under a photo, readers should be able to trust that the content is correct, so that no further verification is needed. This brand of credibility takes many years to build up, and it can be descimated by a single mistake,” commented Harald Henden (63) upon being awarded the Fritt Ord Prize on Tuesday evening.