I was in Belgrade and Novi Sad with my colleagues for a vacation just in last September 2015. I felt a bit of sentimental by walking through the same placeslast weekends. Both in Belgrade and Novi Sad. Relaxed urban sites.
It seems that all journalists from Balkan countries and Turkey have very similar problems concerning media and government relations. Allocation of public resources is a perennial problem and quest for a substantive monitoring of government official continues. Journalists from some countries with a bigger economy and more history with the market forces, such as Turkey and Greece, are of course more interested in private ownership patterns.
What I felt like in addition to usual critics of government, journalists must find new ways to go beyond usual manners of criticism. This might include more focus on new business models in parallel to digitalization. I found this a little bit of lacking throughout the conference. Except a few, most of the attendants did not contribute to conference hashtags (
#mediaintegrity and #SEEAlternatives). This is a sign of what I mean here.
Still, it was a well organized and amicable conference. I recommend to have a look.
Tihomir Loza, director of the regional network SEENPM, has been a rapporteur for the conference, and his report is now available here:
There are also some photographs from the conference published at the end of the report, but few more are available also at the Facebook page of our project, see: