Joint Statment regarding proposed changes in the Law on Broadcasting Activity

July 18, 2011

The Association of the Journalist of Macedonia (AJM), The Macedonian Institute for Media (MIM) and the Independent Union of Journalists and Media Professionals (SSNM) are expressing their serious concern regarding the recently proposed changes to the Broadcasting Law, which intends to change the composition and the number of its members from 9 to 15.

Changing of important laws such as this one, in an accelerated procedure which does not include the media, experts and other stakeholders, is further complicating the situation with the media in the country, and we perceive this  decision as imposed.

We are convinced that any change in regulation concerning the media should always be carefully considered and adopted, in transparent and open process, where the needs and findings of media workers, media experts, and media professionals’ organizations, will also be taken into consideration.

Following our public reaction from July 12th this year, we asked for immediate meeting with representatives of the group of MP’s who submitted the proposal in the Parliament, as well as the responsible authorities in the Government.

During the meetings with MP from the VMRO-DPMNE, Mr. Vlatko Gorcev, on July 14th , and the Minister of Transport and Communication, Mr. Mile Janakieski, on July 15th, we asked the proposed changes of the Law to be withdrawn, and the  Government and the Parliament to open a public debate with the media representatives, the professional media organizations and media experts for addressing the existing problems in the media sphere. We underlined that this is a good opportunity for solving the existing problems with the media in Macedonia.

 

Unfortunately, our proposal was not accepted, and we were told that the proponents believe the proposed changes will contribute for enhancing the efficiency of the Broadcasting Council (BC).

 

Following this communication, we are now confident that the rationale behind the hasty changes lies in the Government and the ruling political parties’ decision to impose a complete control over the BC.  This is a matter of a serious concern because the independence of the regulator, the Broadcasting Council of Republic of Macedonia is crucial for the independence of the electronic media.

We are aware that the implementation of the Broadcasting Law is not completely successful, and these failures contributed for the complicated media situation in the country, for which we warned publicly in many occasions.

Although the BC holds an important responsibility for the current media situation, we are not convinced that the proposed increasing of the number of it’s members will solve the problem.

We are sad to conclude that there is no sincere intention of the institutions in Macedonia to enter a serious dialogue with the media community for solving the accumulated media problems. Unfortunately, whenever regulations concerning the media are enacted, it is done at the last moment, and in an exclusive and non-transparent manner.

 


The World Press Freedom Day

May 3, 2011

In commemoration of May 3d, the World Press Freedom Day, the three media organizations in Macedonia – Association of the Journalists of Macedonia (AJM), Journalists and Media Workers Trade Union (SSNM) and the Macedonian Institute for Media (MIM)held a joint press conference regarding the situation inthe media sphere in the country. In that occasion a joint statement was presented that appeals for  common action and solidarity within the media community in Macedonia , which needs to defend the freedom and dignity of its profession.

JOINT STATEMENT

by

Association of the Journalists of Macedonia (AJM)

Journalists and Media Workers Trade Union (SSNM)

Macedonian Institute for Media (MIM)

The freedom of the press in Macedonia is seriously endangered. The professional and the personal integrity of the journalists are jeopardized, while their economic and social rights are not respected. The political parties are strongly pressuring the media over the media, using them in the political battle with those who have different opinions. The media serve their owners as an instrument for achieving their political and business interests. The laws that regulate the media sphere are implemented selectively; the great amount of money that the Government spends for advertising is selectively allocated which undermines the media independence. The editorial teams do not have the power to resist the cross-pressure coming from the political centers and the media owners. The result of this situation is low respect for the professional standards and violation of the social rights of the journalists. The journalists are pressured not to think of the fundamental function of the media – to serve the public interest.

In the interest of the press freedom and the protection of the journalism WE DEMAND:

1. The institutions in charge for control and regulation of the media, to establish unremitting, unselective implementation of the regulations, in order to enable equal and fair position for all media on the market;

2. The institutions to ensure that the Labor Law is respected in all broadcast and print media;

3. The political parties to stop interfering in the media and leave them work without any restraint;

4. The media owners to stop using the media as megaphones of the political and business centers of power;

5. The editors to stand for the profession and for their journalists, and to stick to the professional standards and the ethics; Otherwise, we will point out the institutions, the political parties or business circles, which create chaos in the media sphere diminishing the fundamental principles of journalism.

Dear colleagues, We invite You, today, on the World Press Freedom Day, to join us in defense of our Profession, in defense of our dignity and freedom.

Association of the Journalists of Macedonia (AJM)

Journalists and Media Workers Trade Union (SSNM)

Macedonian Institute for Media (MIM)


We are Associate member of IFJ

April 21, 2011

Тhe Journalists and Media Workers Independent Trade Union  has been recently admitted as Associate member to the IFJ. The decision was taken by the IFJ Executive Committee whose meeting took place in Brussels on March 19, 2011.


Hello world!

November 21, 2010

WELCOME to the Blog  of the Independent Union of Journalists and Media Workers in Macedonia.  All the journalists and media staff in a media companies   are eligible for membership, as well as freelancers  and retired journalists.