Freedom House: Independence of Bulgarian Media Kept Deteriorating in 2012

Society | June 18, 2013, Tuesday // 20:06|  views

Media freedom in Bulgaria kept deteriorating in 2012, according to the Nations in Transit 2013 report of US NGO Freedom House.

According to the report, as cited by Capital daily, in 2012, the independence of Bulgaria's media sphere deteriorated further as ownership became more concentrated and leading outlets accused each other of corrupt dealings with the government, tax fraud, and other crimes.

"Journalists in Bulgaria continue to face the threat of physical violence, often in response to investigations that imperil powerful business interests or seek to expose organized crime," Freedom House concluded.

According to the report, "the economic crisis in Bulgaria battered media revenues, increasing their dependence on government advertising and politically connected owners."

According to the latest edition of the Nations in Transit report, Bulgaria's score on 7 basic indicators remained unchanged over the past year, but the deterioration of the media environment dragged down the overall democracy score.

According to a rating scale of 1 to 7, with 1 representing the highest level of democratic progress and 7 the lowest, Bulgaria scored 4 on "independent media" (compared to 3.75 a year earlier).

Bulgaria's overall democracy score was 3.18 (compared to 3.14 a year earlier).

Bulgaria ranked into the category of semi-consolidated democracies together with Romania, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia.

All other countries of Central and Eastern Europe that joined the EU in 2004 and 2007 were placed in the top category of consolidated democracies.

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Tags: freedom house, media freedom, Media Independence


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