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Decisions on ‘balanced’ reporting: the Media Council upholds a majority of far-right Jobbik party’s complaints

According to information posted on its website, the Media Council has considered 27 complaints of unbalanced reporting to date, more than half of which were brought by Hungary’s far-right Jobbik party. The Media Council has upheld 13 of Jobbik’s 16 complaints against broadcasters for not including the party’s perspectives or comments in their coverage of certain events. […]

Jobbik wins complaint of unbalanced reporting against ATV

A court on February 18 upheld a complaint of unbalanced reporting brought by Hungary’s far-right Jobbik party against national commercial broadcaster ATV. The Media Council originally ruled that an August 2012 newscast by ATV was unbalanced because it did not allow Jobbik to respond to criticism of the party expressed by the head of Hungary’s […]

Mérték Media Monitor: Assessment of Media Council’s tendering and licensing practices

Mérték conducts a two-part analysis of the Media Council’s practices with regard to tendering and licensing. In the first report,  Mérték examines the tender competitions of the 35 local radio frequencies that had been initiated by the former media authority, the National Radio and Television Commission (ORTT) but completed by the Media Council. The organization found that […]

Mérték Media Monitor: Press Freedom Index 2012

Mérték Media Monitor surveys the state of media freedom in Hungary. The organization conducted field surveys of opinions of  press freedom, including the impact of the recent media regulations, political and economic pressure on the media, and self-censorship. To capture the diversity of these themes, Mérték posed questions to a variety of target groups including journalists, media […]

Court: Media Council must reveal contracts with top TV stations

An appeals court has upheld a prior court decision mandating that the Media Council must disclose the terms of its contracts with Hungary’s two largest commercial TV stations, RTL Klub and TV2. Gabor Csuday, an editor at Kreativ magazine, and the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union (TASZ) filed the case against the Media Council after the Council […]

Media Council gives Jazzy Radio five-year extension

The Media Council has extended Jazzy Radio’s Budapest license for five years, allowing the station to continue operating on its 90.8 MHz frequency until October 2018. The 2010 Media Act allows authorities to grant one-time, five-year license renewals to broadcasters if the operator has paid its license fees and has not repeatedly breached the media […]

Hungarian NGOs to Council of Europe: More Changes Needed to Media Laws

A group of leading Hungarian NGOs have asked the Council of Europe to continue negotiating with the Hungarian Government to make changes to the 2010 media laws. Council of Europe officials and the Hungarian government agreed in late January to introduce several changes to Hungary’s 2010 media legislation that include limiting the term lengths of […]