The report on the indicators of the degree of media freedom and safety of journalists in Macedonia, prepared by the Association of Journalists of Macedonia (AJM), shows that in all three main indicators of the report, such as the legal framework for media freedom, the position of journalists in newsrooms and the safety of journalists, in 2020 there were no serious changes in the media sphere. However, there is an increase in the trend of attacks, ie the security situation of journalists and media workers has not improved compared to 2019, but, on the contrary, it has deteriorated.
The Covid-19 pandemic crisis has further exacerbated the financial situation of the media due to declining commercial advertising revenue. In 2020, the country also saw an increase in the Reporters Without Borders scale, out of a total of 180 countries, our country was ranked 92nd, which is three places higher than in 2019.
Presenting the report, AJM shared that the 2020 report notes that the journalists’ associations the country strongly emphasize their opposition to possible amendments to Article 102 of the Law on Audio and Audiovisual Media Services, which would allow advertising of public institutions in the media.
The 2020 report also notes that public service broadcasting reform has hardly begun, and the public broadcaster’s financial independence and sustainability remain an open question.
According to AJM statistics, since the beginning of 2020, a total of 14 attacks and harsh threats against journalists have been reported, of which more than half are against female journalists.