There has been a strong effort from international donors during the last decade to build and develop free and independent media in Egypt, among others Denmark. Despite these efforts the press in Egypt was in 2011 declared ”not free” by the independent watchdog organization Freedom House. This is a dilemma and a very serious one since free and independent media is an accepted prerequisite for democratic transition in international development politics. The purpose of this thesis is consequently to outline the circumstances that restrict the press freedom in Egypt with a special focus on censorship and self-censorship in the written press, and also whether or not these circumstances are changing after the Egyptian revolution of 2011. The thesis puts forward the argument that the interplay of formal societal and institutional structures such as penal laws, emergency law, governmental ownership and control in conjunction with informal structures such as a culture of censorship, the hierarchical structure of society, and the overarching threat of prosecution and violence from the authorities, are crucial in shaping and restricting the news organizations’ possibilities of practicing press freedom. The thesis furthermore argues that the societal frames around the news organizations are being interpreted and applied into the structure of these organizations in such a way that the societal structures are reflected in these on a micro-level. The findings of my study implies that whilst there exists a number of official and legal tools for the government to implement censorship on the press, the limits of press freedom are actually in many cases imposed by actors inside the news organizations. The ownership structure of the organizations has created a situation, where the organizations exist as tools for their owners, these being politicians or businessmen, to serve their political and economic interests. Therefore there are taboos connected to these interests that cannot be crossed. The hierarchical structure of the news organizations where employment, salary and promotion are based on personal connections ensures that organizational culture is passed down from top to bottom, as are economical and career opportunities. The structures on both societal and organizational level influence the actor’s preferences and possibilities of not succumbing to censorship and self-censorship.
|Uddannelser||Internationale Udviklingsstudier, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) KandidatJournalistik, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat|
|Udgivelsesdato||30 mar. 2012|
|Vejledere||Bodil Folke Frederiksen|