We record, at the end of August, 25 years of independence of the Republic of Moldova and the Celebration "Limba noastra". 25 years is adulthood. But how did the media from the Republic of Moldova evolve and to what extent did it grow up in this period? Which is the general state of press after 25 years of independence of the state Republic of Moldova?
Why do we have a press with a status of "partially free" at present, and our country continues to go down in the international tops regarding the press freedom? Why can't we talk about the existence of a genuine media pluralism in the situation when we have hundreds of media institutions in the Republic of Moldova? How to explain the fact that after decades of totalitarianism and censorship we continue to confront with the concentration phenomenon today? Finally, how much time do we need so the press to be also recognized in our country, as in the civilized world, the fourth power in the state?
Media Azi addressed this topic with its guests: media experts, opinion leaders, press managers and journalists. We will present their opinions daily, during this month, in order to outline together a more realistic picture of local media after 25 years of independence of our country.
Media Azi: As a special reporter in Comrat, what worries and what makes you happy in the discussion with the people from the Gagauz autonomy?
Ecaterina Terzi: I think, people became more open towards the press and orient better in the daily barrage of information. Film crews from different countries come very often to Gagauzia. The journalists are interested in the changes from the region, they want to find out the residents' views on the political and economic life from the region and country, about the culture and the traditions of the people of different nationalities who live here. I am a special reporter for 15 years and I notice that the attention the press pays to the problems from Gagauzia has positive repercussions on the situation from the territory: roads, houses, schools and kindergartens are built, sports fields are arranged. All of these are not only done with the state's help, but with the support of small business, international funds and programs. The people know about this thing and they appreciate it.
Media Azi: How does the media from Comrat look like today and how much freedom do the journalists from the autonomy have?
Ecaterina Terzi: If at the beginning of the 90s, you could watch only programs broadcasted by the Public Company "Teleradio Moldova", the Regional Public Company Gagauziya Radio Televizionu (GRT) and the TV channel ORT in the region, at present, the public has access to the private republican and local TV channels, as well as the TV channels from other countries- Russia, Romania, the Ukraine and Turkey. The internet is an informational source which is expanding more and more. There are, of course, unsolved problems. For example, the local public TV channel GRT is not equipped with modern technology and doesn't have transport units. That's why, general education programs, programs for children or sports can't be made. The private TV channels also have problems: they are dealing with fluctuations of the staff, the salaries they offer are low because the great advertising providers prefer to work with the media institutions which have national coverage. However, the journalists have a certain degree of freedom and even if the civil servants don't always react accordingly to the materials appeared in press, they have to take into account the journalists' opinion and be accountable to the society for their deeds and mistakes.
Media Azi: What can you say about the collaboration of the journalists from Comrat with those from Chisinau?
Ecaterina Terzi: The journalists from the region have close relationships with the colleagues from the capital, based on trust which is very important. We exchange information, we organize trips together to the Gagauz autonomy, we jointly investigate certain issues. Recently, more and more investigative materials appear, supported by different projects implemented by the Independent Journalism Centre, which also contribute to the development of the journalism from the region.