Media issues: Germany

How do you rate the freedom of press in your country on a scale of 1 to 10? (1 = does not exist / 10 = free)?

I would rate the freedom of press in Germany with an 8 to 9. As has already been mentioned in another bloggpost, we have a constitution that guarantees freedom of the press. Since my assessment is a momentary view, I come to a more critical assessment based on current events. In Dresden, for example, a camera team that was on the road on behalf of ZDF was detained by the police for about three-quarters of an hour – this can be seen as an attack on the freedom of the press.

Demo in Dresden: Pegida vs. TV-Team | ZAPP | NDR

What do you know/assume about the media system and the situation of the journalists in the other two countries involved in the project Media beyond frontiers?

To be honest, I hardly know anything about the media system in Ukraine and in Moldova. In general, little is mentioned about the situation regarding press freedom in both countries. I would just assume that the freedom of press is lower than in Germany.

Which media do you primarily use to inform yourself about political or social issues? What connections do you see between the freedom of press/opinion and the development of civil society in general?

I read weekly and monthly newspapers. Since I don´t have a TV I sometimes rewatch the news. But mostly I listen to podcasts throughout the day in order to keep me informed.

Freedom of press is key of a civil society. Only by having journalists that report about the daily events and by having a broad choice of media outlets opionons can arise and a complex society can develop.

Please describe the advantages/disadvantages of social media and traditional media. Which media do you prefer and why? How will both media develop over the next decade an how will this process change the (media) society?

The emergence of social media is a challenge for traditional media, but it is also an opportunity and should not be perceived as a threat. Instead, they can benefit each other since e.g. traditional media can position themselves and expand their reach.

That’s why I like to use both to inform myself but I recognize that they are differently useful for different purposes. While twitter provides quick and easy information, traditional media such as daily newspapers provide background knowledge, extensive research insights and meaningful classifications of events.

Many deal with the rise of social media and the development and try to judge how it will process, to make a prognosis myself my knowledge is not enough.

Have you ever fallen for a fake news? How do you protect yourself against fake news?

I can´t tell if I have ever fallen for fake news. As already mentioned I also use social media like Twitter which have a low entry threshold and thus empower everyone to communicate something, I think it is important to be aware of this and to evaluate the news accordingly. That’s why I appreciate the traditional media and their high-quality and research-intensive content.

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