Joint letter to Lithuanian PM: demand to guarantee the full independence of LRT

The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) and the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) have jointly sent a letter today to the Prime Minister of Lithuania and the Speaker of the Seimas (Parliament). EFJ and ECPMF demand that the government ensure the independence of the Lithuanian public broadcaster (LRT), as proposed changes to the law threaten to curtail it. Here is our joint letter to demand to guarantee the full independence of LRT: Dear Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis, Dear Viktoras Pranckietis, Copy: Ramunas Karbauskis, Gabrielius Landsbergis, Viktorija Cmilyte, Andrius Palionis, Julius Sabatauskas, Remigijus Zemaitaitis, Rita Tamasuniene We are…

Lithuania: EFJ urges Parliament to guarantee LRT independence

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) calls on again Lithuanian Parliament to guarantee the full independence of public broadcaster LRT. The Director General of LRT, Monika Garbaciauskaite, issued today a letter expressing strong concern about proposed legal changes in LRT governance. A new draft law on LRT is to be debated by the Lithuanian Parliament on 11 January. “The latest developments that are now taking place may have a direct impact on LRT’s independence and at the same time pose serious threats to freedom of speech and democracy on the whole,” reacted Monika Garbaciauskaite. Following the report, issued on 12…

Lithuanian journalists criticise new restriction to access public information

Journalists and editors have written to the Lithuanian Centre of Registers complaining about the recent policy to restrict media’s access to public data. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) criticises the Centre for restricting free press and supports the requests made by the journalists to the Lithuanian government. On 14 September, the Lithuanian Centre of Registers ended its long-time practice of providing the media with registry data free of charge. This happened without any prior notice to the media. Since the new policy implemented, registry data are provided to the media for the same fees as those paid by other commercial users.…

EP Public hearing – Role of Independent Public Service Media for Democracy in Europe

Independence of Public Service Media (PSM) in Europe is under increased pressure in a number of the EU Member States. Destabilization of this democratic institution in the context of the overall challenges in Europe and weakening of other democratic institutions, such as political parties represents a real threat to the democracy in Europe. The PSM in Hungary is under the full control of Orban. In 2016 a political cleansing took place in the public service broadcaster in Poland followed by a political purge in the Croatian broadcaster. Recently the Czech Television is under pressure for rejection of their annual report,…

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…

Report about fact-finding mission to Estonia and Lithuania

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 can be found here. 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 of Estonia and…

Fact-finding mission to the Baltics: no “fake news” but blurring lines between journalism and advertising

Journalism is under tremendous economic pressure in the Baltics. This opens the door to political influence and PR. The governments of Estonia and Lithuania answer this with very different approaches. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) investigated the media situation in Estonia and Lithuania from 22-24 January 2018. They interviewed almost 30 experts, among them representatives from the government, academia, press councils, public service media, journalists’ organisations, investigative journalists, editors-in-chief and CEOs. First, the good news: concerning media freedom and pluralism, Estonia and Lithuania are doing comparatively well. Considering the…

EFJ and ECPMF embark on fact-finding mission to the Baltics

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), along with the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) will embark on a Fact-Finding Mission to Estonia and Lithuania from 22 to 24 January 2018, in close cooperation with its affiliates, the Estonian Association of Journalists (EAJ), and the Lithuanian Journalists’ Union (LJU). The mission delegation will investigate the state of media freedom and journalists’ rights and working conditions in Estonia and Lithuania, meeting with journalists, government representatives, and public and private media organisations including Russian-speaking media and researchers. The issue of Russian “propaganda” and the need for ethical journalism, but also…

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