Sweden | Freedom House

Freedom of the Press



Freedom of the Press 2006

2006 Scores

Press Status


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


Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)


Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)


Sweden's media are independent. Legal protections for press freedom date back to the 1766 Freedom of the Press Act. Sweden has one of the most robust Freedom of Information laws in the world. According to the BBC, the country's law aims to ensure that all actions by public authorities that concern the people are open to scrutiny. In spite of repeated demands from Russian authorities and reprisals against Swedish media in Russia, Sweden has refused to shut down the server that hosts the Chechen separatist website KavkazCenter. In August 2005, the Norrkopings Tidningar, a daily newspaper, received a note threatening to bomb the newspaper's offices if it did not cease carrying reports about organized crime. Journalists who investigate extreme right-wing groups are sometimes threatened and even physically attacked by neo-Nazi militants. All print media are privately owned, and the government subsidizes daily newspapers regardless of their political affiliation. Media ownership is highly concentrated, particularly under regional media conglomerates Bonnier and the Modern Times Group. The Swedish Broadcasting Corporation and Swedish Television Company broadcast weekly radio and television programs in several immigrant languages. The ethnic press is entitled to the same subsidies as the Swedish-language press. The internet is unrestricted and roughly 74 percent of the population was able to access it in 2005.