Strengthening the protection of media freedom – monitoring and education
media for democracy
City (headquarters):
Voivodeship (headquarters):
02-11-2022 - 30-04-2024
in progess
Project cost:
149 845,00 EUR
149 845,00 EUR

The Polish media face many challenges that stand in the way of their democratic functions. Among them, are SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation) actions regularly undertaken against journalists. They can take a form of, for example, defamation lawsuits, or other civil lawsuits that aim to silence any inconvenient and critical voices. In Poland, both the local and national media face that problem, but there aren’t sufficient legal guardrails to protect the members of the press. Some of the regulatory institutions, like the National Broadcasting Council, can also display politically-motivated bias. The Council, for example, decides who can legally broadcast, as well as punish broadcasters. Another challenge we have noticed, are direct threats of violence against journalists. These are threats posted online, as well as direct confrontations during demonstrations, etc. We would like to address these three problems by taking educational and protective actions. We will monitor actions of institutions that are of the highest priority when it comes to the proper functioning of the media nationally, and we will analyze their work. We will prepare three reports that will focus on the strategic problem of legal actions (SLAPPs) aiming to silence a democratic debate, safety of journalist, and regulatory actions relevant to the media. We will translate these reports into English in order to reach beyond the boundaries of Poland. We will also create practical handbooks that will teach how to defend oneself against SLAPPs and other forms of aggression. We will conduct workshops on SLAPPs and safety in journalism for about 90 representatives from both local and national media. The goal of the workshops, beyond educating, will be to facilitate networking between the participants and strengthening of relationships between newsrooms across Poland.

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