Freedom of the Press



Freedom of the Press 2002

2002 Scores

Press Status


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


Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)


Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)


Jamaica enjoys a free press, and newspapers frequently criticize the establishment, despite the occasional intimidation of journalists during election campaigns. Rampant crime throughout the year did not directly influence the country's constitutional guarantees of press freedom, but inevitably caused journalists to cover some drug-related crime sensationally while self-censoring other aspects in self-defense. The major print and broadcast media are privately owned and report freely on non-crime-related issues. Libel and defamation laws carrying prison terms remain on the books, although they are rarely enforced. A Freedom of Information Act, still being drafted by the government, contains exemptions that would allow the government to withhold certain information.