European Western Balkans

State of media cause for concern

TANJUG_maliBRUSSELS – Member of the European Parliament (EP) Tanja Fajon said on Tuesday at a panel on the media in Serbia that the situation in that field gives a cause for concern, and that the authorities should invest more efforts in changing that.

Journalists are facing threats, violence, political and economic pressures, Fajon said at the panel titled “The Invisible Hand of Self-Censorship” that was held at the EP headquarters in Brussels, adding that the real owners of many media are not known, as well as how they are financed.

Representatives of the media and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from Serbia complained that the government is too sensitive to any kind of criticism and about a surge in the number of bots in comments and on social networking sites.

Maja Vasic Nikolic from the Independent Journalists’ Association of Serbia (NUNS) said that the set of media laws is in line with European standards, but that they are being implemented slowly and incoherently.

Goran Miletic from the organization Defenders of Human Rights noted that the situation in the media sector is developing “one step forward, two backward”, while Svetlana Vucinic Mesarovic from the news website Pescanik said that the hackers who keep attacking the site are not found yet.

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