Publication Date: April 2007
Research and Editorial Team: Jean Cluade Bertrand; OSCE Serbia

Media accountability systems are non-governmental means of inducing media and journalists to respect the rules set by the profession. They represent the core of self-regulation activities by journalists. Their purpose is to help journalists serve the public better and to help them form a profession, feel solidarity among themselves and recover public trust and thus public support to resist political and economic pressure. Unfortunately, MAS are scarcely known and poorly implemented. The resistance and obstacles to a successful MAS implementation derive in many cases from skepticism about their potential impact.

Most traditional tools of self-regulation include codes of ethics, critical books, university level training for journalists, regular newspaper pages devoted to the media, and readership surveys. MAS are extremely diverse but all aim at improving news media, using evaluation, monitoring, education, feedback and communication. The most obvious classification of the MAS is into three groups according to their intrinsic nature: documents (printed or broadcast), people (individuals or groups) and processes (long or short). This booklet provides a list of over 110 MAS.

Tags: Trust in media Worldwide

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