A new assessment of the risks for media pluralism in North Macedonia was published, which was conducted by the RESIS Institute as part of the Media Pluralism Monitor 2022 (MPM2022), a project coordinated by the Center for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom from Florence. The assessment that covers the year 2021 concludes the following: reform fatigue, clientelistic pressures from the political domain towards media (and vice versa) and party-political confrontations, coupled with structural pressures not exclusive to North Macedonia - such as the disinformation and misinformation flooding of the public sphere, exacerbated by health challenges concerning the COVID 19, have all partaken in the assessment that the media system in this country needs a new impetus for constructive change.
The disruptions in the digital sphere bring the highest risks and critically affect the overall state of the media system in the Republic of North Macedonia. The development of this domain, as elsewhere in the world, is increasingly capturing diversity of audiences and users, but it has also exposed them to plethora of vulnerabilities – the proliferation of misinformation, disinformation, and harmful content, have not been met with audience’s reciprocal capability to judge and deconstruct. This in turn, has increased the risks of destabilisation of the entire political system in this small, but, politically, economically, and demographically complex society. So far, North Macedonia’s regulatory policies and (critically) its educational system have not created an appropriate response to these changes, and this past year has not seen improvements in this regard.
The Media Pluralism Monitor 2022 (MPM2022) is a scientific and holistic effort to document the health of media ecosystems, detailing threats to media pluralism and freedom in European Union member states and some candidate countries.