CRCC member Vaclav Stetka leads the presentation of the 2024 Media Freedom Poll

Dr Vaclav Stetka – CRCC’s Political Communication theme lead and Reader in Comparative Political Communication – presented the key findings of the 2024 Media Freedom Poll on 25 April in Budapest, during a high-profile event featuring representatives of regional news organizations as well as the Vice-President of the European Commission Vera Jourova.

The data from the representative survey, which was collected in March 2024 in four Central European countries – the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia – by a Czech research company Median, show growing concerns over media freedom in Slovakia and Hungary, but a significant decline in Poland, where the share of people concerned over media freedom has dropped from 71% in 2023 to 53% in 2024, reflecting the outcomes of the October 2023 elections that resulted in the departure of the right-wing populist government. Among other findings, the poll has also revealed people’s fears of Russia’s influence on the information environment and public opinion in their respective countries, with 67% of citizens across the four nations saying they are concerned about it.  

CRCC’s member Vaclav Stetka, who led the design of the 2024 Media Freedom Poll, presented its findings at the public launch in Budapest

Commissioned by the Committee for Editorial Independence, of which Vaclav Stetka is a member, and supported by Reporters without Borders, the Media Freedom Poll is an annual survey mapping people’s attitudes to media freedom and independence in Central Europe. The survey also regularly includes questions about people’s opinions about media plurality and ownership transparency, perceived importance of journalistic values such as impartiality, balance or truthfulness, as well as about their support for measures that aim to safeguard media freedom.

The public launch of the 2024 findings took place at the headquarters of HVG, one of Hungary’s last independent publishers. Chaired by Tessa Szyszkowitz, the Chair of the Committee for Editorial Independence, the press conference included Márton Gergely (HVG) and Veronika Munk (Telex/Dennik N), Beáta Balogová (editor-in-chief of the largest Slovak quality daily SME), Bartosz Wieliński (Gazeta Wyborcza), as well as a representative for Reporters without Borders Austria, Alexander Dworzak. The Vice-President of the European Commission for Values and Transparency, Vera Jourova, commented on the poll via a pre-recorded message, citing the poll’s findings showing people’s continuing expectations for the EU to take concrete steps to protect media freedom as an inspiration for the European Media Freedom Act, which has been adopted by the European Parliament earlier this year.

Panel discussion on the 2024 Media Freedom Poll, featuring representatives of local news organisations

Just like last year, the launch of the 2024 Media Freedom Poll has been covered by regional as well as international media, including The Guardian, Balkan Insight, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, Gazeta Wyborcza,, Visegrad Insight and many others.


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