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)


The constitution guarantees press freedom and bars censorship. Most media outlets are privately owned. The freedom of information law designed to increase government transparency became operative in 2001. Parliament refused to amend the Penal code to abolish provisions on defamation. Under Slovak law, insulting the state, parliament, cabinet, president, and constitutional court is a criminal offense. Slovak Public Television (STV) carried a parliamentary question-and-answer session during which the prime minister responded to queries about administration reform. Broadcast officials are investigating whether such a telecast during the pre-election broadcast moratorium was illegal. Another TV channel faced investigation over allegedly favoring one political party. The program could be suspended. In the fall of 2001, parliament postponed the adoption of laws on STV and Slovak Radio (SRo) that would have placed these stations on firmer financial footing and would have increased the stations' independence by putting more NGO and business leaders on their governing councils.