European Federation of Journalists

Newsocracy: Protect Public Service Media against Political Interference

Public Service Media should broadcast for the public, be financed and controlled by the public. They should be a trusted source of news and provide impartial information to enable citizens to make informed decisions. While Public Service Media should be independent, the rise of populism further exposes them to political interference. Politicians try to undermine the media’s independence, manipulate and censor journalistic output. In the worst cases, Public Service Media are turned into state-controlled media, propaganda or public relations instruments.

Media freedom mission to Hungary

A coalition of international press freedom and journalist organizations will carry out a press freedom mission to Hungary from 25 to 27 November. Confirmed participants: IPI, ECPMF, CPJ, Article 19, RSF, EFJ (Ricardo Gutiérrez).

EESC report points out decline of media freedom in Europe

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), which is composed of three groups representing the EU’s trade unions, employers’ organisations and diverse civil society organisations, issued an interim report on fundamental rights and the rule of law in Romania, Hungary, Poland, Austria and France. This report highlights serious concerns regarding freedom of expression and the media as put forward by civil society in the targeted countries. Building on this newly published report, the EESC held in Brussels on 5 November a high-level conference on “Fundamental Rights and the Rule of Law – Trends in the EU from a civil society…

Meeting of the Advisory Board of “The illiberal Turn” Project

Dr Vaclav Stetka (PI) and Professor Sabina Mihelj (Co-I) have been awarded an ESRC standard research grant for a project titled “The Illiberal Turn? News Consumption, Political Polarisation and Democracy in Central and Eastern Europe” (£817,000). The project will carry out a comparative analysis of the relationship between news consumption and political attitudes in four CEE countries – Poland, Czechia, Hungary and Serbia, at a key point in time when the region is witnessing the rise of populist leaders, resurgence of illiberal nationalism, and a shift towards authoritarian forms of government. Scheduled to run from May 2019 until November 2021,…

Hungary: almost 78% of the media are pro-government

The European Federation of Journalists has expressed concerns over the state of media freedom and independence in Hungary following the publication of a study showing that the majority of media in the country are pro-government. It was published on 2 May by the media monitor Mérték and investigates the level of independence of the Hungarian media, stating almost 78% of the media are pro-government. The study, commissioned by a Member of the European Parliament (MEP), Sven Giegold (the Greens), shows the far-reaching media power of the ruling Fidez-party. In November 2018 the creation of the government-related media foundation KESMA uniting…

Report: Urgent action needed to protect press freedom in Europe

Press freedom in Europe is more fragile now than at any time since the end of the Cold War. That is the alarming conclusion of a report launched today by the 12 partner organizations of the Council of Europe Platform to promote the protection of Journalism and safety of journalists. The report, “Democracy at Risk”, analyses media freedom violations raised to the Platform in 2018. It provides a stark picture of the worsening environment for the media across Europe, in which journalists increasingly face obstruction, hostility and violence as they investigate and report on behalf of the public. The 12 Platform partners…

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