Freedom of the Press

Ecuador

Ecuador

Freedom of the Press 2003

2003 Scores

Press Status

Partly Free

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

41

Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)

14

Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)

13

The constitution provides for freedom of the press, but laws that prevent the exercise of this freedom remain on the books. Four articles in the criminal code penalize defamation of the president, court officials, or corporate heads, although charges are rarely brought against journalists under these laws. Journalists practice some self-censorship regarding sensitive political topics or stories about the military. In addition, media owners, some of whom have narrow regional economic interests, frequently set journalists' agendas and editorial stances. Most media outlets in the country are privately owned.