The Greek Media and the Economic Crisis

The Greek Media and the Economic Crisis

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Entering the fifth year of recession, Greece and its people are undergoing a series of different changes in their everyday life; from severe cuts in payments and benefits, spiking unemployment, social and political unrest, new age homelessness to solidarity movements, most levels of society are being affected by the new economic data without exception.

The once mighty world of the Greek media, with 11 TV channels, 71 radio stations, more than 20 national newspapers and numerous magazines, is kneeling under the weight of the crisis. Journalists have been left unpaid for months, some newspapers shut down while others declare bankruptcy.

Major daily Apogevmatini and weekly financial paper Investor’s World have been out of print for quite some time now, while leftist and major circulation daily Eleftherotypia has been subjected to the bankruptcy code for having debts exceeding 50 million Euros.

Hundreds of employees of private channel Alter have been left unpaid for the past 12 months, while other smaller circulation newspapers owe their staff payments for six months time. The media world is now experiencing additional pressure for drastic cuts in payments with the renegotiation of labour contracts.

Whether private or state run, all media agencies are adjusting to the new harsh reality. The journalists’ union fears that the crisis will inevitably affect the quantitative and qualitative information the people are getting, while it has announced further strikes to protest against the demolition of labour rights. Subject to the advertisement of business and political interests, many media agencies are now at the mercy, due to lack of capital, of their previous sponsors.