Latvians believe media is under political pressure

Take note – story published 7 years ago

A survey by Eurobarometer, the statistics wing of the European Commission shows Latvians are generally more doubtful of the independence and reliability of their media outlets than is the average in the European Union 

The survey of 1,000 Latvian residents, which can be read HERE, shows that while Latvians think their media offers exactly as diverse a range of opinions as the EU average (66% believing this to be the case), they feel media, and particularly public media, are subject to political influence.

Only 30% of Latvians believe the media is free of political or commercial pressure (EU average 38%), and an even smaller proportion, just 24%, believe public media, of which LSM is an example, are free from political pressure. The equivalent EU figure is 35%.

47% of those surveyed believe Latvian media provide trustworthy information, 46% believe they do not. (EU equivalent figures 53% and 44% respectively).

There was some disparity in the figures however, as when asked about specific media types, Latvians said they do in general think they are reliable - even more than the EU average, in fact.

70% said radio was reliable, 56% said newspapers were reliable and 66% said television was reliable (EU average figures 66%, 55%, 55%)

But perhaps most striking was the fact that very few people had any idea that there is a media regulator existing in Latvia. 

Only 16% of people could name the National Electronic Mass Media Council (NEPLP), 14% of people named an incorrect body and 67% were unaware there was a regulator at all.

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