Daily Revolt

December 10, 2007

World Divided on Press Freedom

A free press is essential to a democratic society. It appears that the world barely  shares that view:

World opinion is divided on the importance of having a free press, according to a poll conducted for the BBC World Service.

Of those interviewed, 56% thought that freedom of the press was very important to ensure a free society.

But 40% said it was more important to maintain social harmony and peace, even if it meant curbing the press's freedom to report news truthfully.

Pollsters interviewed 11,344 people in 14 countries for the survey.

Then there is the question of how free the press is in any given country, do they inform or are they just selling a product:

In the United States, Britain and Germany, only around 29% of those interviewed thought their media did a good job in reporting news accurately.

[...]The survey also identified concern in some countries over the concentration of private media ownership in the hands of fewer large companies.

In Brazil, Mexico, the United States and Britain, more than 70% of respondents agreed with the suggestion that ownership was an issue because the owners' political views emerged in the news.

 Read the entire poll conducted by the BBC

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