Based on the work session held at Paris 4th district City Hall, october 2nd, 2019,
where participants included 92 individuals, from 20 countries,
representing 50 organisations and associations, 10 institutions and universities,
15 newspaper, publishers, art galleries, art fairs and companies
During the first Cartooning Global Forum, convened on October 2nd 2018 at Paris, 4th district City Hall, all attending participants entered into an exchange on the following topics and concluded their debate with the subsequent recommendations. Within the context of the 2030 SDGs, we commit to promote these recommendations and invite institutions, leaders, associations and NGOs to factor them in to the development of projects in these areas:
SDG 4 – Quality Education
- Promote educational action to include the study of news media images (cartooning as well as photo/video) in primary/elementary school curricula and throughout lifelong learning. Extend such courses also to teachers and parents.
- Create a school program to teach visual literacy i.e. interpreting an image (as CLEMI in France).
- Invite institutions to use cartoonists’ work in the illustration of school course materials.
- Cover cartooning as a valid art form and a possible career in all visual art & graphic design schools. Hire cartoonists as instructors for these courses.
- Equip each National Library, or equivalent archival body where they exist, with a fund for the conservation of cartooning, to preserve its history.
- Use cartooning to educate people on the principles of free expression versus the taking of offence. Encourage acceptance of difference, multiculturalism and disagreement. Emphasise the importance of a proportional response; a sketch to answer to a sketch, but no violence.
- Promote the creation of school newspapers and guarantee that they will be free from censorship by teachers and governors. Give young people more power and autonomy distribute information.
- Spur city hall and museums to organize cartoon exhibitions, free for visitors to better expand the public’s awareness of and ability to interpret cartoons.
SDG 5 – Gender Equality
- Use cartooning as a means to diversify gender representation and challenge gendered perspectives.
- Demonstrate to young audiences that all genders are capable, welcome and needed in cartooning.
- Promote gender equality by including cartoonists of multiple backgrounds in public events.
- Ensure women’s creative work is showcased with dedicated events and spaces.
SDG 10 – Reduced Inequalities
- Offer opportunities for historical and cultural reclamation (such as workshops) to populations without access to news, where illiteracy is prevalent, language barriers exist, displacement has occurred, disabilities are not accommodated or poverty is rife; enable those who draw to be vital actors rather than “forgotten spectators”.
- Require that cartoonists are given status equivalent with that of other allied professions in news media: columnists, editors, photographers, etc.
- Widen the definition of cartoonist to include those who use drawing in first-person testimony, for example children sketching in war zones.
SDG 16 – Peace, Justice and strong institutions
- Promote the efforts of professional journalistic institutions and unions who extend positive and protective measures to cartoonists working in news media in their territories. Likewise such measures extended by institutions and unions for visual artists.
- Advise social media networks and platforms to: correctly categorise and properly contextualise editorial cartoons; differentiate between cartoons about controversial topics and actual incitement to hatred; pursue complaints policies that are accessible, efficient and transparent; and place penal responsibility upon those who deliberately deface or misappropriate cartoons, thereby altering the message conveyed to an unsuspecting public.
- Reinforce protection of intellectual property on social media, including methods to avoid decontextualization (watermarks, etc).
- Raise awareness at relevant museums, institutions & foundations of cartooning’s value as contemporary art. Integrate works of cartoonists into Local/Regional/ National Contemporary Art Funds (or equivalent).
- Bring cartoons into public spaces, balancing the iconography of power with satire (for example, the First Council Chamber of the Paris City Hall covered by Tignous sketchs).
- Use cartoons official publications produced by any department (country / state / region / town) financed by taxation.
- Create an international aid fund for freedom of the press and information, to ensure permanent international financial support of NGOs and associations working in the field to protect journalists and cartoonists and in education on, public promotion of and developing audience exposure to news media images.
- Advise that as a matter of principle the work of threatened and displaced cartoonists be given priority in order to both materially assist them and ensure the preservation of their contribution to the heritage of cartooning.
These were the main themes of 2018’s forum. At each subsequent session our intent will be to take stock of the past year, extend the work based upon the prior recommendations, explore and develop them, detail methods of application, demonstrate their positive effects in society and promote peace, justice and equality.