EFJ calls on EU to reinstate media freedom budget

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) sent a letter to the Commissioners Gabriel and Oettinger on 24 May 2018 to express our concern that freedom of expression will not be reflected in the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). We believe that it is crucial for media freedom and media pluralism to be given a clear priority in the EU budget for the future (2021-2027). Other media freedom organisations like the ECPMF sent a letter to Commissioners Gabriel, Navracsics, Oettinger and First Vice-President of the European Commission Timmermanns. Missing Freedom of expression budget in Multiannual Financial Framework Dear Commissioner, We write to you on…

1700 journalists on strike at Norwegian public broadcaster NRK

Update 24.05.2018: After negotiations for a collective agreement with the Norwegian Public Broadcasting (NRK), the Norwegian Union of Journalists (NJ) managed to win on all main demands on 23 May 2018 in Oslo. The 1700 journalist members of the Norwegian Union of Journalists (NJ) at the Norwegian Public Service Broadcasting NRK went on strike today, after negotiations and mediation did not lead to a new collective agreement. The European Federation of Journalists and the Broadcasting Expert group expressed their solidarity with the journalists on strike at NRK and NJ. According to the EFJ affiliate, NJ, the NRK wants to replace around…

Montenegrin investigative journalist Olivera Lakić shot and injured

The European and the International Federation of journalists (EFJ/IFJ) joined its Montenegrin affiliate, the Trade Union of Journalists of Montenegro (SMCG) in condemning the attack on Vijesti journalist Olivera Lakić, who was shot in the leg outside her home on 8 May 2018, in Podgorica. She was taken to the hospital and remains in stable condition after a man shot her in the right leg, while two other men ran away, according to Vijesti’s editor-in-chief. Olivera Lakić is working as an investigative journalist for the daily newspaper Vijesti. She is known for investigating crime and corruption in Montenegro. According to media reports she…

Exploitation of freelance journalists is a threat to our democracy

By Renate Schroeder, Director of the European Federation of Journalists The gap between the incomes of the diminishing number of journalists with stable contracts and the growing band of freelances in Europe is getting bigger. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and its Freelance Expert Group (FREG) are appalled by this worsening situation. Such unfair pay practices cannot continue, since an increasing proportion of editorial content is written and produced by freelance journalists. This has an impact on the quality of journalism and, in the end, on democracy itself. That is why the EFJ has been supporting the ETUC’s PayRise…

Young journalists in Germany demand better pay for better journalism

A delegation of about 20 young German journalists together with the Deutscher Journalisten-Verband (DJV) and Deutsche Journalisten Union (dju in ver.di) met with publishers to demand better working conditions on 25 April 2018 in Berlin. They insisted that publishers have to invest in the future generation of journalists or the “generation Erasmus” will leave and with them the young topics that attract young readers. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) strongly supports the demands for investing in young journalists. This happened in the context of very difficult negotiations between the unions, DJV and dju in ver.di and the publishers association…

Resolution calls for protection of investigative journalists in the wake of murders of Ján and Daphne

A resolution on the protection of investigative journalists in Europe, passed by Members of the European Parliament (MEPs)  on 19 April 2018 during the plenary session in Strasbourg, calls for better protection of investigative journalists and whistle-blowers. In the wake of the murders of investigative journalists Daphne Caruana Galizia and Ján Kuciak, MEPs demand better protection of journalists who are regularly subject to lawsuits intended to censor their work a permanent financial EU scheme to support independent investigative journalism a draft EU directive to protect whistle-blowers the Commission to address challenges to media freedom and pluralism in the EU better monitoring of media…

Report calls on EU states to collaborate with journalists’ unions for gender equality

A report on “Gender Equality in the Media Sector in the EU”, passed by Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) during the plenary session in Strasbourg on 17 April 2018, calls on Member States and the European Commission to collaborate with journalists’ trade unions and media organisations to promote co-regulation in the media sector through codes of conduct. In order to safeguard and ensure gender equality, media companies are urged to draw up codes of conduct and self-regulation systems together with representatives from journalists’ trade unions. This aims to allow preventive action and impose sanctions regarding gender-based discrimination in media productions. The…

New Council of Europe report calls on Montenegrin legislators to ensure professional rights of journalists

The final report “Montenegro Media Sector Inquiry” published on 5 April 2018, expressed the urgent need for Montenegrin authorities to guarantee professional rights of journalists. A group of independent experts carried out a detailed analysis of the Montenegrin media sector from August 2017 until January 2018. Representatives from the EFJ’s Montenegrin affiliate, the Trade Union of Media of Montenegro (SMCG) were consulted for the investigation. The report found that the private Montenegrin media had failed to engage with the SMCG about a collective agreement prepared by the national journalist trade union a year ago. The EFJ backs the recommendation addressed to private…

Hungary: two media outlets forced to close following Orbán’s electoral win

Radio station Lánchíd Rádió as well as Hungarian opposition daily newspaper Magyar Nemzet have shut down on 10 and 11 April 2018. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is appalled by the latest developments following Orbán’s electoral win, which further narrows media pluralism in Hungary. The Hungarian opposition daily newspaper Magyar Nemzet and its online version were forced to close yesterday due to financial reasons. A sudden increase in rent of the publishing buildings, whose owners are reported to be close to the newly re-elected Hungarian Prime minister Viktor Orbán, led it to cease its media production.  The Hungarian radio station Lánchíd Rádió…

EFJ meets Slovak journalists in aftermath of Ján Kuciak’s murder

The director of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), Renate Schroeder met with a group of Slovak journalists from various Slovak media on 11 April in the European Parliament to discuss the current situation of journalists in Slovakia and what must be done to better protect (investigative) journalists. The meeting “Slovakia and Malta: killed journalists. What is changing in Europe?” organised by the Information Office of the European Parliament in Slovakia brought together 15 Slovak journalists from  TV Markiza, TV TA3. RTVS- public TV and radio, TV JOJ, Daily SME , Daily DennikN, daily PRAVDA and press agency TASR. Nora Wehofsits, advocacy…

Fact-finding mission report to the Baltics published

A new report about the fact-finding mission conducted by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF), which investigated the media situation in Estonia and Lithuania from 22 to 24 January, was published on 9 April 2018. Members of the mission interviewed almost 30 experts: representatives of the government, academia, press councils, public service media, journalists‘ organisations, investigative journalists, editors-in-chief and CEOs of major media companies. The two Baltic states were chosen in the wake of a wave of disinformation spread by Russian specialists during the US election campaign. The question, whether the comparatively small societies…