Freedom of the Press

Canada

Canada

Freedom of the Press 2002

2002 Scores

Press Status

Free

Press Freedom Score
(0 = best, 100 = worst)

16

Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)

6

Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)

9

Critics regarded the increasing concentration of media ownership and, after September 11, the proposed bill to prevent terrorism, as threats to press freedom. CanWest Global, the media conglomerate that enhanced its already considerable broadcast holdings with the purchase of more than a dozen of Conrad Black's papers in 2001, insisted in December that 14 of its major newspapers publish the same editorial. Critics accused the group of trying to sideline regional voices. Journalists' groups maintained that Bill C-36, rather than prevent terrorism, would increase surveillance over innocent citizens and restrict access to information. Under the bill, journalists could be compelled to testify and be prosecuted for revealing information the government wants safeguarded. In June, police seized a television reporter's video footage. An exiled Pakistani journalist received a series of death threats after writing critically of the Taliban regime.