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Type of publication: Straipsnis / Article
Author(s): Rožukalne, Anda
Title: Editorial independence in the Latvian news media: ownership interests and journalistic compromises
Is part of: Media transformations, 2013, vol. 9, p. 80-111
Date: 2013
Keywords: Editorial independence;Self-censorship;Media ownership;Editors
Abstract: Editorial independence in the each media organization is influenced both by external factors (sources of information, business partners, advertisers) and by internal factors (business interests and the goals of the media owner and the ma¬nagers of the outlet). There are at least three levels at which editorial independence can be evaluated in accordance with various players in the media environment – the level of the individual, the media organisation and the media industry. Editorial independence at each of these levels, in turn, depends on self-regulation and media regulation mechanisms. In this specific research, the question about attitude to editorial independence has been analyzed. With the goal to determine the conditions, which affect the level of editorial independence in the media firms, the formal and informal factors in the relationship between owners and editors have been evaluated. The data of the Latvian journalist survey has been compared with data acquired during semi-structured interviews with media owners and chief editors. In Latvia, the will of the owner to use media in his own interest both political and commercial is perceived as natural, as well as the belief of the owner that the opinions made by the editor must not interfere with the owner‘s business venture. However, even in editorial offices where strict limitations of editorial independence exist, journalists find a way to produce content independently. For journalists it doesn‘t mean the situation at the office, but their own individual work, defining the editorial independence as a chance freely produce specific content. Respondents in this survey think highly of the individual autonomy of journalists, but media workers clearly understand the limitations on editorial independence that are implemented by owners, directors or editors-in-chief.
Internet: /10.7220/2029-865X.09.05
Appears in Collections:Media Transformations 2013, vol. 9

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