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Taiwan drops to a score of 27 for press freedom

Taiwan drops to a score of 27 for press freedom

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwan received a lower-than-before rating of 27 points in the annual rankings for freedom of the press drawn up by Freedom House, dropping one place to No.48, reports said Wednesday.
The non-governmental organization still ranked Taiwan as one of the rare countries in Asia that have a free press, but it pointed out that “political polarization, self-censorship, and indirect Chinese influence somewhat limit the diversity of opinions represented in mainstream media.”
The part of the report devoted to Taiwan opened with the remark that “Taiwan’s media environment is one of the freest in Asia, and the vigorous and diverse press reports aggressively on government policies and alleged official wrongdoing.”
Looking back at the past year in Taiwan, Freedom House mentioned violence against journalists during protests last spring. Reporters covering the March 23 attempt by protesters to occupy the Executive Yuan accused police of pushing, dragging and attacking them as they evacuated the building, the report said.
During anti-nuclear protests the following month, police in Taipei City beat two journalists and dragged them away from the scene, reportedly to prevent them taking pictures as officers prepared to disperse the activists, Freedom House said. The police later apologized, promised compensation and launched an investigation, according to the report.
Turning to the subject of cyberattacks, Freedom House mentioned Next Media with its Hong Kong and Taiwan editions of the Apple Daily, which during 2014 suffered several attempts by hackers to shut them down.
The case of cable operator China Network Systems also came up in the Freedom House report, which mentioned the blocking of its sale first to the Want Want China Times Group because of the already considerable size of its media empire and later to Ting Hsin International because of its involvement in food safety scandals.
As to the points Freedom House awarded to Taiwan, the country received an overall 27 marks on a scale from 0 to 100, with 100 being the worst. It was awarded a nine for legal environment on a scale from 0 to 30, 10 for political environment on a scale from 0 to 40, and eight for economic environment on a scale from 0 to 30.


Updated : 2021-09-25 19:34 GMT+08:00