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The AEJ published the first Survey of Media Freedom across Europe in November 2007. Entitled Goodbye to Freedom? and edited by William Horsley, AEJ Media Freedom Representative, it was debated at the AEJ's 2007 Congress in Dublin.

On 28 February 2008, a Survey Update entitled Goodbye to Media Freedom? was published. On that day, William Horsley presented its main findings to the Brussels-based press corps in the Résidence Palace building opposite the European Commission.

The Survey was further expanded in November 2008 in the Collection of AEJ Reports. These were presented to the 2008 Linz Congress, and further presentations were made at the 2009 Maastricht Congress, the 2010 Ordu Congress, the 2011 Bucharest Congress and the 2012 Offida Congress.

The original Survey covers 20 countries in eastern and western Europe and highlights evidence that media freedom in Europe is threatened by restrictive laws, hidden political and commercial pressures, threats of jail, intimidation and in some cases even murder.

The Update and further presentations contain new evidence from 15 countries that media freedom is in retreat because of widespread violence, censorship, meddling in broadcasting, commercial pressures and security laws. William Horsley charges European governments and EU institutions with complacency and puts forward three remedies for repairing the damage done to media freedom and independence. He argues that journalists should inform the public better about the dangers, and return to the “gold standard” of objective reporting and proper scrutiny of the actions of governments.


What others said about the Survey…

Emerging threats to freedom of the press. By Paul Gillespie. 17 November 2007 (reproduced with kind permission of The Irish Times)

The Survey was also reported by SacredFacts

Özgürlüğe veda mi? Avrupa medyası kıskaç altında. By Zeynep Oğuz. 3 December 2007 (pdf)

… and after the 28 February press conference in Brussels

Transcript in full of William Horsley's remarks

Euractiv report with links to many other useful sources

NUJ report written by the NUJ's Phil Hunt


The AEJ and authors are naturally happy for short passages of the Survey and country reports to be extracted for quotation, but we would appreciate attribution to the AEJ if extensive use is made of this material. Email:




Media freedom reports presented to the 2015 Congress at Sibiu, Romania, have been contributed by the AEJ sections for:









The following media freedom reports from national sections were presented to the Neusiedl Congress on 17 October:

Armenia, by Liana Sayadyan

EU's Eastern Partnership States, by Krzysztof Bobinski

Hungary, by Jozsef Martin

Romania, by Stelian Negrea

Turkey, by Turgay Türker

Ukraine, by Artur Rudzitsky and Maya Zakhovayko


The following media freedom reports were presented to the Brussels Congress on 22 November:

Bulgaria, including the results of the Section's meeting with journalists from Bosnia and Macedonia.

Greece, highlighting the clearance of ERT's headquarters in Athens by riot police (report written by Katharine Sarikakis).

Italy, analysing "disguised censorship" by physical and legal harassment of journalists in Italy (report written by Alberto Spampinato).

Romania, a disturbing picture of new forms of censorship overtaking the media, including political colonisation and judicial harassment (report by Brindusa Armanca).

Serbia, outlining the impending media law and the malign combination of political interference, doubts over media ownership and funding (report written by Rick Thompson, UK Section).

Turkey, including the pressure to censor reporting of the Gezi Park protests and the dismissal of 30 journalists for refusing to do so. See also

Ukraine, covering violence against journalists, threats to internet security and some nasty legislative surprises. See also Ukraine on the Media Freedom Index.


Overview – Report by William Horsley, AEJ Media Freedom Representative

Armenia – Report by Liana Layadyan

Austria – Report by Otmar Lahodynsky

Belarus – Report by Andrei Aliaksandrau

Bulgaria – Report by Kristina Hristova

Croatia – Report by Zdenko Duka

Overview – Report by Krzysztof Bobinski, AEJ Poland

Romania – Report by Teodora Stanciu and Oana Enachescu

Serbia – Report by Miloje Popovic

Turkey – Report

Ukraine – Report by Maya Zakhovaiko


Information without borders – Address by Birgitta Jonsdottir, Icelandic MP and author of the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative

Armenia October 2010 report with reference to the Indicators for Media in a Democracy

Belarus – Evaluation of the situation in Belarus

Bulgaria – Report (NB this is a PowerPoint file)

Ukraine Report, 17 January 2011

Ukraine – Overview of current obstacles to media freedom and independence, by Arthur Rudzitsky, 6 April 2010


Ukraine – Report on Freedom of Speech in 2009 by Arthur Rudzitsky,  Diana Dutsyk and Mykhailyna Skoryk



Full Survey. Goodbye to Freedom November 2007 (535 KB)

February 2008 Update. Goodbye to Media Freedom? February 2008 (166 KB)

Collected AEJ reports 2008. First edition, 5 December 2008 (minor corrections, 15.12.08) (242 Kb)

Overview – William Horsley

Survey and Update in French. 2008 (454 KB)

Presentation by the French Section of the AEJ. The translation was done by Le Taurillon, the online magazine of the young people's section of the European Movement in France. Its website includes an interview with William Horsley


Country reports

These reports combine the texts that relate to each country from the Survey. Those marked * contain extracts from the Update and those marked ** contain extracts from the November 2008 Linz Reports

Introduction and Summary (William Horsley)* **

Armenia (Liana Sayadyan)* **

Austria (Otmar Lahodynsky)* **

Belgium (Michel Theys)

Croatia (Zdenko Duka)* **


    Part One (Kyriakos Pierides)*

    Part Two (Hasan Kahvecioglu)*

Czech Republic (Tomas Vrba)* **

France (Régis Verley)*

Germany (Horst Keller)

Greece (Athanase Papandropoulos)

Hungary (József Martin)* **

Ireland (Joe Carroll)* **

Italy (Carmelo Occhino and Elzbieta Cywiak)*

Moldova (Aneta Grosu) **

Netherlands (Fred Sanders) **

Poland (Krzysztof Bobinski)* **

Romania (Ruxandra Ana)

Russian Federation (Manana Aslamazyan and Gillian McCormack)*

Serbia (Nebojsa Ristic) **

Slovakia (Peter Kerlik and Tibor Macak)* **

Spain (Pedro González)* **

Turkey (Dogan Tilic)*

United Kingdom and EU (Celia Hampton and William Horsley)*