Ireland | Freedom House

Freedom of the Press



Freedom of the Press 2004

2004 Scores

Press Status


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


Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)


Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)


Government plans to amend the Freedom of Information Law sparked criticism from the media. If adopted, the bill would reduce access to government information and deny the right to appeal when information is not disclosed. Fears are also widespread over government plans to introduce a statutory Press Council to regulate the conduct of the press, which would replace the current self-regulatory model. Ireland's libel laws are widely criticized. One of Ireland's most high-profile and outspoken crime journalists, Paul Williams, was threatened twice in November, allegedly carried out by former paramilitaries. Ireland's state-owned national broadcasting organization, RTE, runs three national TV channels as well as four radio stations; there is only one commercial television station, but most of Ireland can also receive British broadcasts. The press is diverse and independent.