Essay On Freedom Of Press

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Basic Principles and Criteria

In Western democracies freedom of the press implies that all people should have the right to express themselves in writing or in any other way of expression of personal opinion or creativity.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights indicates:

“Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers.”

The concept of freedom of the press is often covered by the same laws as freedom of speech, thereby giving equal treatment to media and individuals. This philosophy of freedom is usually accompanied by legislation ensuring various degrees of
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Other lines of thought later argued in favor of freedom of the press without relying on the controversial (disputed) issue of natural law; for instance, freedom of expression began to be regarded as an essential component of the social contract.

Parallel with the concept of press freedom, the term fourth estate remains for all journalistic activity today. However, the press is not part of the governmental structure; but monitors the other branches (the legislative, the executive and the judiciary) as an external check on behalf of the people.

This impact of the press as a skeptical and critical monitor the other branches of government on behalf of the people is the watchdog role of the press. For this role, mass media have to value its traditional, high standards for accuracy, sourcing and objectivity.

Independence of the Media

The freedom of the press is in fact a matter of a balance between the desire of the authorities to control the media and the ability of the media to resist such attempts.

This balance is closely tied to the independence of the media. So the concept of independence (including economic independence) of the press is one closely linked with the concept of press
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