On New Year’s Day the rotating EU presidency was handed over to Hungary, that hurried to flout a fundamental Human Right, namely “freedom of expression and information“, by establishing conditions in which anyone who disagrees with the government can be silenced, punished and in the long term banished from our national media.
Gary Harvey Recycled Couture...
As it stands, the five members of the media council (…) will be able to cite virtually any pretext for fining a newspaper: because they believe that an article is not objective, because they do not like what has been said about a member of their party, even if it is true. Thereafter, the newspaper can go to court to proclaim its innocence and demand a suspension of the fine. But what will be the criteria retained by the court when it rules on that suspension? We simply do not know.
In other words, the media council will have the power to put a newspaper out of business in order to protect the citizens from “abusive media report”.
It’s unfortunately not the first case of media corruption in Europe. In Italy, Berlusconi handles the state-owned broadcaster RAI imitating Vladmir Poutin’s usual practices. But because Brussels gives Berlusconi carte blanche to do as he sees fit, Russian ways are now gaining currency in Western Europe as well!
I wonder how “clean” are the media anyway. After events such as mad cow disease, swine flu,… (the list is long), that had atomic bomb effects thanks to the media, we have to admit we’re constantly alarmed and frightened up. This tends to weaken our sense of critic and perspective, and to make us think less independently and therefore do things the way we’re told to. It sounds a bit tragic, but we live with it and some of us better than others. I personally decided to open more readily a Vogue than a newspaper, the worst news you can get is that your favorite jacket won’t make it next season, or that the it-shoes will just kill your back a little more…
As for the world press freedom, as little as we can do and even if it might not change our lives right now, we don’t want to end up watched the big brother way on social networks, blogs, and wherever we tell an opinion publicly… Hopefully there will be reactions before it becomes so serious.