Consequences of a politically compromised RTVS are worse than you think

Amid falling poll numbers and regular street demonstrations there is little doubt parties like Smer and SNS hope to use this channel to implement the most classic of political campaign tactics.

RTVS, the Slovak RadioRTVS, the Slovak Radio (Source: Gabriel Kuchta)

Things are obvious enough that we can just state it clearly. The politically compromised, professionally unqualified management of Radio and Television of Slovakia (RTVS) is firing journalists who resist converting public service media into the propaganda arm of an unpopular government. There is no doubt about this anymore, it’s not one or two incidents, it’s a clear — and unfortunately familiar — pattern.

While the situation for public media in Hungary and Poland is by many measures worse, at least the respective ruling parties, Fidesz and PiS, are actually popular. The jokers running the Slovak government — behind the scenes and otherwise — are not. This means there is not even a facade of democratic legitimacy for the decisions being made.

In more bad news, the potential consequences of a politically compromised RTVS are likely worse than you think.

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