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Respekt - Czech Republic | Monday, October 20, 2014

Press freedom needs paying readers too

The sale of shares in the publishing company that puts out the liberal Slovakian daily Sme to the investment firm Penta - which is suspected of corruption - is bad news for democracy, the liberal weekly paper Respekt believes: "Rich local businesspeople have always had enough money to influence politicians decisions to their advantage. However they wielded no influence over the media, which kept a close eye on them. But for a year now the majority of Czech and Slovakian media have been in the hands of people whose interests have nothing to do with publishing, but only with accumulating power. ... The good news is that the Sme editors who handed in their resignations now want to start a new project. ... But the time for cheap or free papers is over. In demonstrating their willingness to pay for content, readers will also play a role in shaping the future of the quality papers. And if they do, journalists and readers will jointly make sure that freedom is maintained."

» To the complete press review of Monday, October 20, 2014

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