Freedom of speech and freedom of information are amongst the bulwarks of a democratic society. In an increasingly complex world, journalists who can master subjects and communicate effectively to the general public are an invaluable resource to the public and crucial to the best functioning of a democracy. The quality of democracy and the quality of journalism are deeply entwined. As historian Richard Reeves answered a student who asked him to define real news: "Real news is the news you and I need to keep our freedoms." In this age of faster and better communication, new media technology is bringing information to life. We are witness to an increasing trend from established ink-on-paper newspapers to electronic publishing. Today's journalists have an increasingly difficult task in maintaining media quality, pluralism and diversity in the wake of greater corporate and political dominance over media and information services. We expect journalists not to subscribe to any given political viewpoint, to resist pressure of any kind. Journalists should promote human rights, democracy and pluralism; encourage freedom of political and cultural expression; be opposed to discrimination of any kind and condemn the use of media as propaganda or to promote intolerance and conflict; and constitute a catalyst for positive change. The 2006 Dan David Prize in the Present Time Dimension will be awarded to a journalist who, guided by these values and with utmost integrity and perseverance, has contributed to the field of journalism as a whole and has had a significant impact on today's society and world.