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Janos Herman

Media Monitoring Reflects Tensions of Pre-Election Month

Georgian civil society organizations unveiled the results of election media monitoring at a press conference on October 6, 2016. Supported by the European Union and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), media monitoring examines media performance during the 2016 Parliamentary elections in Georgia and covers forty-six national and local media outlets – televisions, radio, print and online media.

“The 2016 Parliamentary elections in Georgia are the first when the Association Agreement with the European Union is fully in force. Elections are always a test and Georgia has a great opportunity to consolidate the democratic gains achieved during the previous years. EU-UNDP media monitoring is a valuable tool to measure and highlight the media’s contribution to this process.  I am happy to note that the results show more balanced and informative media than in 2012,” said Janos Herman, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia.

The released media monitoring reports cover the period from May 20 to September 25. In addition, the team of media monitors presented some preliminary findings of the pre-election weeks, September 25 – October 5, to reflect growing polarisation in some media segments related to the increased political temperature before elections.

“Specific examples and analysis included in the media monitoring reports assist the media in performing its duties during elections paying more attention to the cases of unbalanced coverage and hate speech. One of the most important goals of media monitoring is to stir proactive public discussion and contribute to establishing accountable and responsible relations between the media and society,” said Niels Scott, Head of UNDP in Georgia.

Election media monitoring is being implemented by the three Georgian civil society organizations –Georgian Charter of Journalistic Ethics for TV channels, Internews – Georgia for radio, and Civic Development Institute (CDI) for press and online media, with assistance from the European Union and UNDP.

Media monitoring was launched in May 2016 and will continue through November 2016. All reports are available online at: www.mediamonitor.ge