What is Mapping Media Freedom?

Mapping Media Freedom tracks limitations, threats and violations that affect media professionals as they do their job. Violations, censorship and needs of threatened journalists in Europe Journalists and media workers are confronting relentless pressure simply for doing their job. Mapping Media Freedom identifies threats, violations and limitations faced by members of the press throughout European Union member states, candidates for entry and neighbouring countries.

What kind of incidents are reported?

Mapping Media Freedom monitors limitations, threats and violations that affect a journalist as they do their job. We strive to have a complete narrative of the objective facts of incidents without bias against news outlets or journalists.

Limitation to Media Freedom

What happened in the incident?

Death – Media worker killed as a result of their work
Physical Assaults – Media worker subjected to violence as a result of their work
Injury – Media worker injured as a result of their work
Arrest/ Detention – Media worker arrested or detained as a result of their work
Interrogation – Media worker questioned by authorities as a result of their work
Intimidation – Media worker menaced as a result of their work
Collateral Targets – Threats made those associated with a journalist, ie family or friends
Attack to Property – Computers, cameras or other tools damaged
Civil Charges – Media worker sued as a result of their work
Criminal Charges – Media worker charged in connection with their work
Legal Measures – Laws or court orders curtailing media outlets or workers
Loss of Employment – Termination, job cuts
Blocked Access – Media worker prevented from covering a story or speaking to a source
Defamation/Discredit – Media worker publicly ridiculed
Psychological Abuse – Verbal harassment, offline bullying
Sexual Harassment – Media worker targeted for gender or sexual identity
Trolling/ Cyberbullying – Media worker harassed online
DDoS/Hacking – News site or journalist targeted
Violation of Anonymity – Publicly naming a source
Bribery/Payments – Money proffered to influence coverage
Impunity – Incidents where crimes against journalists go unpunished
Targeting Whistleblowers – Targeting anonymous sources
Attacking Freedom of Association – Union-busting by media outlet management

Case of Censorship

Does this incident include content produced by a journalist/media worker? What happened to that content?

Article/Work didn’t appear at all
Article/Work was heavily cut omitting important in
Article/Work was slightly but significantly changed
Article/Work was framed in a misleading way
Soft censorship
Article/Work was heavily cut omitting important information
Commercial interference

Source of the Threat/Violation/Abuse

Who targeted the journalist/media worker?

Police/State security
Government/State Agency/Public official(s)
Political party
Private security
Known private individual(s)
Criminal organisation
Another media

Type of Journalist

What type of journalist/media worker was involved? In the case of bloggers/citizen journalists: Do they present themselves as a journalist?

Blogger/Citizen journalist


Describe the gender of the journalist/media worker involved in the incident?

Not Applicable

Support Needed

If known, what union or media outlets could help the journalist with?

Legal Aid
Physical protection
Informational resources
Union intervention

Reports by Country

Mapping Media Freedom monitors a total of 43 countries which include the EU member states, candidate and potential candidates for EU membership, non-EU EEA states and four former-Soviet bloc nations.

European Union member states

European Union potential candidate states

Non-EU states

Who is considered a journalist/media worker?

A media worker is anyone partaking in the gathering, assessing, creating, and presenting news and information.

How do we verifythe incidents submitted?

  • The platform’s methodology complies with journalistic standards employed by Reuters and AP
  • Each report is verified by 2-3 trusted and independent sources which include but are not limited to: local and national media outlets, journalist unions, police reports, social media accounts of the individuals directly involved.
  • When violations are self-reported or when clarification is needed Index staff also verifies incidents with the media worker(s) affected by getting first-hand testimony and or speaks to journalists’ unions.
  • Our verification process is a multi-layered one in which staff work with a team of independent journalists to verify and report incidents submitted to the website. The goal is the most complete narrative of the incident that reflects the objective events.