PUBLICATIONS
RESEARCH INSTITUTE ON SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

Professional status and labor rights of journalists and media workers

About 2,100 people work in the media in Macedonia, spread over 3,146 positions, according to the multi-month survey conducted during 2023. The census of the working positions in the media in Macedonia was the first step in the research of the situations in the media and in journalism that will be used for building policies and advocacy to improve the professional status and labor rights of journalists and media workers.

According to the findings of the research, the main problems in the media are low wages, stress at work and the non-respect of some of the basic labor rights guaranteed by the Law on Labor Relations.

One of the most worrying findings is that about half of journalists and 70% of media workers have incomes below the average monthly salary (37,065 MKD, May-October 2023), which confirms that journalism is a poorly paid profession, which makes journalists vulnerable and subject to various influences.

These are some of the key findings in the publication "Professional Status and Labor Rights of Journalists and Media Workers", jointly published by the Independent Union of Journalists and Media Workers and the RESIS Institute. The author of the analysis is Dr. Snezhana Trpevska from the RESIS Institute.
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Protection and prospects of upholding labour rights of journalists media workers

The experiences of the member states of the European Union, as well as some neighboring countries, offer positive examples of how to strengthen legal guarantees and improve the respect of the labor rights of journalists and media workers in our country as well. The guarantees for the work and professional status of journalists and media workers are further strengthened by the media legislation of different countries.

In Macedonia, the labor rights of journalists and media workers are covered by the general legislation that regulates labor relations, but in them the specific rights of persons employed and engaged in the media space are not singled out as a separate category. The Media Law also contains certain provisions on the labor rights of journalists, but they are not sufficient to ensure the stability and independence of their working and professional status. These are some of the key findings in the publication "Protection and opportunities for exercising the labor rights of journalists and media workers - a comparative analysis", which was jointly published by the Independent Union of Journalists and Media Workers and the RESIS Institute. The author of the analysis is Maja Atanasova from the Macedonian Association of Young Lawyers.
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Labor rights of journalists and media workers – the domestic legal framework

SSNM in cooperation with the RESIS Institute, as part of a comprehensive research, publishes the publication entitled: "Working rights of journalists and media workers - legal framework of the Republic of North Macedonia", whose author is Maja Atanasova from the Macedonian association of young lawyers.

In this publication, a comprehensive analysis of the laws and legal regulations that refer to the labor rights of journalists and media workers is made and points are pointed out that need to be worked on in order to improve them, as a result of which the position of media professionals would be strengthened. and the conditions in which they operate. The publication is the first of its kind that focuses on the labor rights of journalists and media workers, as a basic and starting point without which it is impossible to build professional and objective journalism that protects the public interest and the right to information of citizens.
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Community media – an alternative option to local pluralist democracy

Community media in the online sphere are almost not developed at all in the Republic of North Macedonia. The main reason is that they are not recognized in policies and legislation, so they have neither systemic nor financial support from the state. In RSM, in general, media legislation does not cover online media at all, neither non-profit nor commercial. In the current process of media reforms that is taking place in the country from September 2022, the need for minimum regulation of online media is increasingly being discussed, as an issue that is also imposed by the new EU Regulation on media freedom.

This document provides guidelines for overcoming obstacles to the development of online community media in the media system of the Republic of North Macedonia. It is the result of the final phase of the pilot project for developing an authentic model of online community media that the RESIS Institute implemented in the Eastern and Southeastern regions of the country.
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Communication habits, opinions and needs of people with physical disabilities

The households in which people with physical disabilities from the Eastern and Southeastern regions of RSM live have good access to modern communication technologies and devices: as many as 83.8% of these households have smartphones, 66.7% have personal computers, and in 52% of surveyed households have smart TVs. Some of the people with physical disabilities, especially the elderly, have several problems when using technologies: almost half of the respondents (47%) do not have enough computer skills, 44% are not skilled at searching content on the Internet, and 35.9% of respondents are not skilled enough in using a smartphone. For a significant percentage of respondents, the lack of financial means to purchase a smartphone (41%) or a computer (41.1%) is a problem.

This is a short summary of the research on the communication attitudes, habits and needs of different vulnerable groups from the East and South-East region. The research provides insight into the daily habits of using the media and communication technologies of people with physical disabilities, but also insights into the obstacles and problems they face in accessing the media and the public sphere. The results of this research will serve as an incentive for various activities of civil society organizations that work to promote the rights of vulnerable groups of citizens at the local level. The research was conducted within the framework of the project Encouraging civic engagement in local governance – LocalActiveMedia supported by the National Endowment for Democracy from the USA.
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Communication habits, opinions and needs of the hearing impaired

The access to smart communication devices of the households in which the hearing impaired people from the East and South-East regions of RSM live is relatively low: 61% have smartphones, 48.8% have personal computers, and only 40.2% of households have smart TVs. Problems in using technologies for these people are: the lack of skills to work on a computer (56.1%), to search content on the Internet (53.6%), and to use a smartphone (47.5%). A big problem for them is that they do not have access to assistive technology (automatically generated subtitles) for reading videos on the Internet (59.7%), as well as the absence of sign language or subtitles on programs on domestic TV channels (51.2%). .

This is a short summary of the research on the communication attitudes, habits and needs of different vulnerable groups from the East and South-East region. The research provides insight into the daily habits of using the media and communication technologies of the hearing impaired, but also insights into the obstacles and problems they face in accessing the media and the public sphere. The results of this research will serve as an incentive for various activities of civil society organizations that work to promote the rights of vulnerable groups of citizens at the local level. The research was conducted within the framework of the project Encouraging civic engagement in local governance – LocalActiveMedia supported by the National Endowment for Democracy from the USA.
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Communication habits, opinions and needs of visually impaired people

Access to communication technologies and devices is not a big obstacle for realizing the communication rights of visually impaired people from the East and South-East region of RNM: 65.2% of households have smart phones, 64% have smart TVs, 60.7% have personal computers. But what most of this vulnerable group of citizens lack are: knowledge and skills to work with a computer (77.5%), to search content on the Internet (59.5%), as well as to use a smartphone (58 .4%). From there, the data that only one fifth of the surveyed people use a computer daily for various needs is understandable. This especially applies to older respondents who often have no one to turn to for household help.

This is a short summary of the research on the communication attitudes, habits and needs of different vulnerable groups from the East and South-East region. The research provides insight into the daily habits of using the media and communication technologies of visually impaired people, but also insights into the obstacles and problems they face in accessing the media and the public sphere. The results of this research will serve as an incentive for various activities of civil society organizations that work to promote the rights of vulnerable groups of citizens at the local level. The research was conducted within the framework of the project Encouraging civic engagement in local governance – LocalActiveMedia supported by the National Endowment for Democracy from the USA.
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Monitoring Media Pluralism in the Digital Era 2023

RESIS conducted the new assessment of the risks for media pluralism in North Macedonia, as part of the Media Pluralism Monitor 2023 (MPM2023), a project coordinated by the Center for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom from Florence.

The MPM data for 2022 unequivocally demonstrates that North Macedonia’s media system needs a new strategic media policy framework. This is due to the crystallisation of important systemic dislocations that started two decades ago and were nevertheless not matched with an adequate policy response.

The MPM 2023 is a scientific and holistic effort to evaluate the current threats to a pluralistic and free media landscape in Europe. To provide rigorous and sound findings, the CMPF team and the Country Teams involved in the project analyse 200 variables for the 20 indicators of the MPM, five for each of the four major areas: Fundamental protection, Market plurality, Political independence and Social inclusiveness. This cycle is based on data from the year 2022 and represents the sixth EU-wide implementation of the Media Pluralism Monitor project.
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Community media: Concepts, development and experiences - A comparative study

Community media is a standalone phenomenon, resulting directly from the need of different groups in society to find a way to satisfy that part of their media needs that they do not find in the main (mainstream) media.

The study arose from the need to build an authentic and sustainable model of online community media in RNM that will meet the communication needs of all groups of citizens at the local level.

The comparative study presents the different theoretical approaches, the standards of the Council of Europe for this type of media, as well as the experiences of other countries in creating non-profit media that serve local groups and communities.
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Journalists' Views and Perceptions of Judicial Transparency: A Comparative Study in Three Western Balkan Countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Serbia

The study "Journalists' Views and Perceptions of Judicial Transparency: A Comparative Study in Three Western Balkan Countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Serbia" presents the findings from the regional research project conducted among journalists from three Western Balkans countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Serbia. The author of this study is Dr Snežana Trpevska, from the Research Institute on Social Development – RESIS. The main objective of the study was to gain insight and identify means of facilitating dialogue and cooperation between journalists and judicial authorities in these countries and to establish priority areas and actions for transforming the current “antagonistic” relationship into a partnership for the benefit of the public. At a regional level, this is the first comprehensive study that comparatively examines the various aspects and causes of the tense relationship between these two professions, both of which are exceptionally important for a democratic society.
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Indicators on the level of media freedom and journalists’ safety in the Western Balkans: Comparative Analysis 2022

RESIS Institute published its third comparative analysis of the level of media freedom and journalists’ safety in the Western Balkans countries. As in the previous two cycles (2016 and 2018), the comparative findings presented in this analysis rely primarily on the data collected by the partners of the platform Safejournalists and published in the seven national reports. The first assessment in 2016 established many deficiencies in the implementation of the constitutional and legal guarantees for media freedom and safety of journalists in the Western Balkan countries. This newest assessment confirmed that the process of creating more free and safer environment for media and journalists in the last six years was complex, slow and sometimes regressive because the authorities in most countries demonstrated obvious reluctance to understand the demands of journalists’ associations and to increase media freedom and protect journalists from attacks and harassment.
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Monitoring Media Pluralism in the Digital Era (MPM 2022) North Macedonia

In cooperation with the Center for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom from Florence (CMPF), RESIS conducted a new assessment of the risks for media pluralism in North Macedonia, as a part of the Media Pluralism Monitor 2022 (MPM2022). 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. It was published in July 2022.
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Gender in the media 2021: Gender issues and the way of representation of women and men in the sports program of the national terrestrial televisions

The RESIS Institute, for the needs of the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services (AVMU), prepared the Analysis "Gender in the media 2021: Gender issues and the way of representation of women and men in the sports program of the national terrestrial televisions". This is the first analysis that provides quantitative and qualitative insight into how much and in what way national televisions report on female athletes and sports, as opposed to male athletes and sports. The analysis was published in March 2022.
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Media Sector Hotspots in North Macedonia: Decisive Reforms Long Overdue

In cooperation with the Aspen Institute Germany, RESIS published a new analysis detecting the still existing structural obstacles to the development of media freedom in North Macedonia. The main finding of this study is that the market is fragmented, most media outlets are financially weak and unsustainable, the working status of journalists is still insecure and unstable, the public broadcaster does not have financial stability, autonomy and independence, and the access of local communities and vulnerable groups to the public sphere is imperiled. In addition, since social networks are the main source of information for most of the population, especially younger groups, people are greatly exposed to disinformation and hate speech. The study was published in December 2021.
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Monitoring Media Pluralism in the Digital Era (MPM 2020/2) North Macedonia

In cooperation with the Center for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom from Florence (CMPF), RESIS conducted the second assessment of the risks for media pluralism in the country. The main finding of this study is that the situation of media pluralism in the Republic of North Macedonia has generally improved compared to the assessment made in 2016. However, some old risks have not been overcome yet and new ones have emerged: the spread of disinformation, the dominance of social networks and the absence of redress mechanisms to tackle these new challenges. The study was published in July 2021.
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Pluralism of media ownership in the new media environment (2020)

The Study explains the most important concepts in the regulation of media ownership in the audiovisual sector, presents the EU regulatory framework and the laws of several European and neighboring countries, and then analyzes the national legislation and practical aspects of its implementation. The recommendations given in the Study should serve the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services, to draft a proposal for new legal provisions that will regulate media ownership in the changed digital environment. The Study was commissioned by the Council of Europe, as part of the action “Freedom of expression and freedom of the media in North Macedonia” (JUFREX 2).
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The Impact of New Media on the Formation of Public Opinion and on the Work of Traditional Media (2020)

The study offers a comprehensive picture of the changing audience habits in the digital environment and on the advertising practices in traditional and online media. The research abounds with different types of data and presents the first mapping of the online advertising market in the country. The study was commissioned by the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services, within its competence to monitor the development of the audiovisual sector and the convergence with electronic communications and information society services.
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Gender in Media 2019: Analysis of the gender aspects in children’s programs on the national terrestrial television

In this study the RESIS Institute analyzes the gender aspects in the children's programs aired by the national television stations. It is the first comprehensive insight into the gender issues in the children's programs in the country. The research study combines qualitative and quantitative strategy to analyze the constructed social markers about the gender in the children's programs. The findings will help the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services to design future media policies in this domain of audiovisual media services.
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Mapping the levels of media literacy in North Macedonia – among the adult population at age 16+ (2019)

The study offers a comprehensive picture of the individual patterns of media use, communication habits and skills of the audience, the levels of knowledge and critical understanding of media content, as well as the creative and participatory practices of the audience in the contemporary communication environment. The data were obtained through a face-to-face survey on a sample of 1358 respondents, representative of the population of North Macedonia at the age of 16+. The study was conducted for the OSCE Mission in Skopje and the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services, which is legally obliged to initiate activities for the development of media literacy.
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Indicators on the level of media freedom and journalists’ safety in the Western Balkans: Comparative Analysis 2018

The comparative analysis summarizes the trends in the development of media freedom and safety of journalists in the Western Balkans, in the period from 2016 to 2018, in terms of three key issues: what is the legal environment in which the media and journalists work, what is the position of journalists in the newsrooms and how safe are the journalists in their profession? The research was coordinated by the RESIS team and conducted by the researchers of the journalists' associations and trade unions in BiH, Montenegro, Kosovo, Macedonia and Serbia, as part of the Western Balkans’ Regional Platform for Advocacy Media Freedom and Journalists’ Safety. The Project was supported by the European Union.
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Comparative review of the political advertising in the media (2018)

This analysis comparatively reviews the regulatory framework related to political advertising in the media in several European countries and in North Macedonia. The purpose of the analysis was to instigate a public debate on the arguments used by developed democracies and the European Court of Human Rights in assessing the negative impact that political advertising can have on the public sphere, journalism and, in general, on freedom of expression. The analysis was prepared for the needs of the Association of Journalists of Macedonia, with financial support from the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung and the European Union.
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Application of Media Pluralism Monitor 2017 in European Union, Macedonia, Serbia and Turkey

The analysis conducted in 2017 identifies the potential risks for media pluralism in the Republic of North Macedonia, in four main areas: Basic Protection, Market Pluralism, Political Independence of the Media and Social Inclusion in the Media Sector. It is the first comprehensive assessment of the state of media pluralism in the country, which was conducted as part of the Media Pluralism Monitor (MPM) Project coordinated by the Center for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom (CMPF) in Florence and supported by the European Union.
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Participatory model for the public media in Macedonia: reviving an idea (2017)

This policy paper elaborates on the argument that the potential for transformation of the public service broadcaster in North Macedonia must be based on the following values: citizenship, universality, quality and trust. The direction in which the development of public radio and television should move is the ‘participatory model of public service’ (PMJS) - a model based on strong and stable relations with the public and civil society. The document was prepared within the project "The Prospect and Development of Public Service Media: Comparative Study of PSB Development in Western Balkans in Light of EU Integration", implemented by the Center for Social Research Analytika in Sarajevo, in cooperation with the University of Fribourg, funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation through the SCOPES program.
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