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Internet-journalism for the sake of the real Liberty

The leader of "Youth human rights group" Maxim Efimov will take part in training TOL on Internet-journalism, which will be in Prague (the Chech Republic) from January 27 to February 6. Training must help the development such internet-project of YHRG as "Internet-TV", "site YHRG", "YHRG`s blog" and to assist independence and democratizations mass-media in Karelia. 20 Russian journalists will take part in training course. Leadinging training will be the teachers from american university, czech journalists. It is enclosed in program a visit to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty/.

The History of TOL.
TOL was founded as a Czech nonprofit organization in April 1999, the month after the final issue of its print predecessor, Transitions magazine, was published. The new organization was founded by four of the former print magazine's staff members who were dedicated to keeping the widely respected, cross-border coverage of the magazine alive. With the financial and professional support of the Open Society Institute's (OSI) Internet program and the Media Development Loan Fund (MDLF), TOL was resurrected online in July 1999. The new Internet format also meant a renewed stress on working with the region's young, up-and-coming journalists and on taking advantage of electronic communications for journalism training throughout the vast post-communist region.

The Predecessors

In November 1994, the Open Media Research Institute (OMRI) published the pilot edition of a new magazine covering the politics, events, and developmental issues affecting the 28 countries that resulted from the fall of communism and the breakups of the early 1990's: the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact, the violent disintegration of Yugoslavia, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and Czechoslovakia's velvet divorce. Transition, the new bi-weekly, began regular publication the first week of January 1995. Primarily targeting academic readers and experts, Transition provided in-depth information on issues at the heart of post-communist transformation, with in-house OMRI analysts providing the bulk of the content.

When OMRI was closed as part of a restructuring of OSI programs in 1997, Transition magazine was renamed Transitions. The new magazine retained quality analysis, but turned toward more of an accessible, journalistic style that made Transitions relevant to experts and novices alike. Transitions published 21 monthly issues between June 1997 and March 1999, becoming--through its informative and readable articles and eye-catching artwork--the premier English-language magazine on Central and Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and the former Soviet Union. The magazine, plagued by exorbitant distribution and printing costs, folded in 1999 after further OSI cutbacks.

As an online magazine, TOL has continued that renowned heritage in new and innovative ways, increasing the timeliness, amount, reach, and area of coverage, and adding a network of correspondents that stretches across the region. TOL has the energy of a young Internet project, but with the solidity, knowledge, and confidence of a media tradition dating back a decade of transition. With a network of more than 50 correspondents, and a reputation for insightful and local-oriented coverage, TOL has grown into a reliable, internationally recognized brand that continues to challenge and change convential media wisdom.

Past articles from TOL and past issues of Transitions magazine are available online to TOL members at archive. Membership fees and information are available at

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