Mertek Media Monitor is committed to opinion and press freedom. Its aim is to evaluate the impacts of media laws and other media policy decisions, and to publish the results on international level. The project is based on professionally profound operation, independent from business and political interest groups and it has competencies in the field of law, journalism, economics and sociology. It inspires debates about press freedom and publicity and at the same time it puts pressure on authorities and media policy decision makers.
The Mertek Media Monitor’s activity comprises of
- conducting legal analysis, through which it directly monitors the authority’s activity, conducting impact studies, which allow for the evaluation of the impact of the new media laws on the broader market and content coverage, as well as on journalists’ conduct,
- with its results it has a constant presence in the technical and non-technical forums of the domestic and international public, thus promoting the effectiveness of freedom of the press and maintaining publicity that complies with the principles of democracy.
The monitoring of regulatory implementation is carried out by way of legal analyses; such analyses, in addition to decisions by the media authority – including resolutions related to media content, broadcasting rights and funding – also cover related court decisions, and decisions by co-regulatory organizations.
The Mertek Media Monitor intends to substitute for the lack of operating transparency of the media authority and provides profound base for the future review of media regulation and media policy.
Assessment of the media law also includes broader sociological and economical analyses. The multidisciplinary approach includes
- the monitoring of journalists’ practices and attitudes,
- the analysis of media market trends, with special regard to the pluralism of local media markets and the shaping of printed and online media markets, and
- the analysis of media contents, from news to tabloids, paying special attention to public service media, in order to explore the phenomena and changes that can be traced back to regulation.
The Mertek Media Monitor, in order to implement the above goals, performs the following sub-tasks:
- analysis of media authority decisions and court judgments, publishing the analyses
- media authority decisions and court decisions relevant to media content: comparing resolutions with prior resolutions and judgments, constitutional court decisions, judgments by the Human Rights Court
- critical analysis of resolutions, establishing potential tendencies in various case types and certain providers
- frequency tenders: analysis of legality, analysis of the impact on the media market and the diversity of media coverage; analysis of the justification of resolutions, study of the relevant market coverage, study of the operating conditions of services providers active in the relevant market
- financing tenders: analysis of reasonability and effectiveness, verification of efficient management, making the necessary public interest data transparent
- monitoring the activities of the media and communications commissioner
- monitoring the decisions of co-regulatory organizations established pursuant to the media law
- monitoring the effectiveness of the regulation
- development and application of the press freedom index that gives an overview about the impact of media laws on journalism, media market and content supply
- study of the journalists’ and editors’ attitudes and personal experiences through surveys and interviews; basic survey on their knowledge of media regulations and their general
approach towards them, repeated assessments on the impact of regulation on the journalists’ activities; analysis of materials disclosed by the program monitoring service of the
- developing indices and benchmarks and their application in the analysis of market processes and media coverage; creating analytical tools for the long term
- qualitative content analysis studying the effects of regulation relating to various media types; analysis of whether legislative provisions and official practices cause detectible changes in the production of media content; special attention to public service media content
- regular analysis of the technological, economical and social environment of the media system
- monitoring foreign regulations and media political tendencies
- research to identify profession-specific problems in journalism
- “advocate” for the freedom of the press and strong publicity, widespread publication of the results
- incorporating the results into communications and law courses of universities
- workshops, professional discussions for journalists, processing journalist case reviews, introducing professional experiences of foreign journalists
- organizing conferences
- organizing regular press discussions about project results and current issues related to the project