Further collapse of public service broadcasters
The polarised political climate, marked by constant verbal attacks and nationalist rhetoric, has created a hostile environment for press freedom. Editorial policies reflecting ethnic divisions and hate speech are ever more evident. Journalists are attacked for their ethnic origins as well as what they write. Defamation suits by politicians often serve to intimidate journalists and deter them from pursuing their work. The instrumentalisation of the media for political purposes continues, and this is increasingly evident in the case of public service broadcasters. While investigative journalists have brought several significant scandals to light in recent months – allegations of corruption involving top court officials, issuing fake high school diplomas, reports of attempts by neighboring Croatia to portray Bosnia-Herzegovina as a terrorist hub – but the State Prosecution did little to tackle the problems. Media ownership concentration is a source of concern, especially as ownership is not transparent. Employment conditions for journalists are precarious: they are hired on short contracts and are paid little.
63 in 2019
29.02 in 2019