Press Freedom in Greece Drops After ERT Shutdown (Video)

    Press Freedom Worldwide in 2013Reporters Without Borders have noticed a further decline in press freedom in Greece. The organization recently published a report that depicts the sad truth about press freedom around the world. In the 2014 report Greece held 99th place, 14 places lower than last year and 28 places lower than 2012.

    According to the report, the effects of the economic crisis and constant rise of populism are the main causes for the press freedom restriction in Greece. Delphine Halgand, U.S. representative for Reporters Without Borders said that Greece’s downward plunge is “due to many factors. One of them is the number of violent attacks against journalists, which are mainly due to a neo-Nazi party that recently entered the Parliament. Another factor that explains this decline is the Greek government’s decision to close the national broadcast (ERT) which included many radio and TV channels.”

    The U.S. appears to have also dropped significantly. The country placed 46th this year in comparison with 2013 when it was in the 33rd place. The UK also dropped to the 33rd place this year.

    However, Turkey is mentioned in the Reporters Without Borders report as the example of a country that took advantage of the fight against terrorism to satisfy certain ambitions. The country placed 154th due to dozens of cases involving violence against journalists, as well as arrests.

    Overall, the report mentions that there was a significant restriction in press freedom in many countries, such as the U.S. and Greece but there were also many countries who showed improvement such as Ecuador, Bolivia, and South Africa.

    The three countries that ranked first are once again Finland, the Netherlands and Norway, while the three countries that ranked last in this year’s index are Turkmenistan, North Korea and Eritrea.



    1. How does a government owned and controlled entity filled with useless political appointees like ERT have anything to do with freedom of the press. Where have government media entities not been in lockstep policy and used as a platform for indoctrination or otherwise “cleansing” the news to the satisfaction of government screeners for public consumption. Leftist organizations like Reporters Without Borders may view it as loss of freedom for the oppressed, others see it as natural selection. I suggest RWB spend more time in Eretria and North Korea where the is no such thing as news reporting.

    2. I agree that the report may be skewed in the wrong direction, especially lately. It can be seen that as a result of the continual downward spiral in relevancy of the two previous major parties, both of which once dominated the political airways for so long, a shift in transparency seems to be s taking place–though it is still far from what it should be. Suddenly we are seeing more names of individuals of all parties mentioned in the presses associated with investigations or when being accused of malfeasance. Even photos duly shaming certain previously “sacred cows” are becoming more commonplace. In the USA or UK, when someone is under an official investigation for wrong-doing, they are pointed out (photos and names) in the presses as such–accused. In Greece it still remains a rarity that actual names of individuals are broadcasted when associated with any such aspersions–especially when the culprits are of a lofty political persuasion. Let’s hope the “naming and shaming” continues, as in itself it becomes, if expected by a nation’s press, a deterrent in itself.

    3. In the US and UK it is often the seriousness of the charge and the political party that is affiliated that merits investigative coverage. The media particularly in the US has had a decades long bias being the King-maker that heavily faovoured the Left.. Greece enjoys a more politically diverse media particularly the printed press that often applies a heavy dose of opinion into their news reporting. In general investigative reporting has waned due to the limited availability of resources and increased dependency on press releases and news briefs. TV and radio news today is served in two minute bites to capture the readers limited attention and is often more entertainment/opinion than news. What’s happening in Greece is in part due to the critical state of the nation’s finances increasing pressure from the electorate and Troika to enforce the laws and punish the wrongdoers..The administration will make a few sacrificial “examples” as a demonstration of their resolve for the masses, but be assured this is a temporary measure at best, after the May elections and bailout it will be business as usual until funding runs out once again.