Hungary

Hungary

Appetite for media ownership

Businessmen with close ties to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s party, Fidesz, not only managed to acquire new media outlets in 2017 but also to replace foreign media companies that had invested in Hungary’s media. Their biggest success was getting control of the last three regional daily newspapers in the summer. Nevertheless, the Hungarian media landscape is still varied, and both print and online outlets do not hesitate to publish investigative coverage of alleged corruption involving top Fidesz and government officials. Two media bubbles co-exist in Hungary. One, created by pro-government and pro-Fidesz media outlets, is obsessed with migration, the “defence of Hungary and its borders” and its hate campaign against the Hungarian-American billionaire philanthropist George Soros. The other is focused on finding corruption scandals. The survival of media outlets critical of the government is due largely to former Orbán donor Lajos Simicska, who broke publicly with the prime minister in February 2015 and continues to fund a media empire originally created to support Fidesz. The government and its business allies now have their sights turned on two media outlets in particular, the leading commercial TV channel RTL Klub and the leading political news website Index.hu. Both are critical of the government.

73
in the 2018 World Press Freedom Index

Ranking

-2

71 in 2017

Global score

+0.10

29.01 in 2017

  • 0
    journalists killed in 2018
  • 0
    citizens journalists killed in 2018
  • 0
    media assistants killed in 2018
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