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Politike

Report: The quality of media content has deteriorated, the attempt to make the media 'out of fashion' is a concern

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For the second year in a row, the Network 'Safe Journalists in the Western Balkans' has published the Report "Indicators on the Level of Media Freedom and Safety of Journalists in Albania 2021". The report says that despite the exponential growth of the number of media in the last decade, especially online media (in our country there are more than 650 licensed online media), the quality of media content remains a challenge and in 2021 the quality of media content was worsened even more. Adherence to ethical standards and copyright rules as well as professionalism have not yet been consolidated for a number of reasons. According to the authors of the report, although the Constitution of Albania guarantees freedom of expression, media and information, Its provisions are not fully implemented in practice where in 2021 there are signs in Albania of deteriorating freedom of expression, the right to information and freedom of the press. The main structural challenge of the media ecosystem that negatively affects freedom of expression and media freedom in Albania is the symbiotic interrelationship between strong economic and political interests in the media system, including, in some cases, the impact of organized crime. "The practice of using the media for blackmail risks becoming something normal in Albania and, given the widespread prevalence of corruption, expectations are low that such cases will be reported and investigated," the report said. Although the Albanian Constitution provides for freedom of expression and the government usually respects these rights, in 2021 there were reports that government, businesses and criminal groups sought to dictate their undue influence in the media. It also mentions the fact that Albania has an overcrowded media environment in terms of the number of media, but a limited advertising market and concentration of media ownership on some owners / families who use them as a tool for political influence and economic gain. In 2021, the quality of reporting content as well as editorial independence deteriorated with increasing self-censorship by journalists and reducing the space for independent, critical and investigative journalism due to fear, pressure and harassment. Also, according to the report, steps back have been made in the media regulatory authority and in ART.

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