The leading Croatian media will not express their support to certain political options before the upcoming parliamentary elections, but some of them will not hide their stand, which will show their political preferences.
Even though choosing sides before elections is not a provocative question, because it is very common in the West, Tportal’s Editor in Chief Đurđica Klancir stated that they will report all subjects independently, a decision that was supported at the editorial staff meeting by the Chairman of the Board of Croatian Telecom, Davor Tomašković.
For Gojko Drljača, Deputy Chief Editor of Jutarnji list, picking a side is out of the question, but that doesn’t mean that they will not try to levy certain topics that they consider to be socially important. Through their multimedia project “The Right Question” they tend to create 400 articles in Jutarnji list and 200-300 articles in Slobodna Dalmacija, and they have also opened a subsite on their portal which will focus of the unemployment, education, health or financial security issues.
Večernji list’s Executive Editor Zdravko Milinović considers this to be a noble idea, but he doesn’t believe that it will have much effect on the elections. Večernji list and its editorial staff will also not pick a side, but the authors that write for them will surely pick a side, some will be very clear about it and some will not.
Telegram will be very clear on their stance, announced Editor in Chief Igor Alborghetti, just like Jutarnji list was in a time when he was one of the leaders of the medium. “We will publicly declare who we support though our articles, but I don’t believe that it will have much influence, because the majority of voters has already decided who they will vote for. The role of the media is truly overrated, social media have a greater influence these days”, stated Alborgetti.
Milinović and Drljača agree for the most part, although Drljača would rather not underestimate the power of the media, while Đurđica Klancir stated that there are situation when an article causes strong reactions, which corroborates that fact that the media is not as unimportant as it seemed.
Politicians are more afraid of journalists, stated Milinović, who also called for caution due to possible imputations of the political underground, because that might create new affairs just before the elections, and the media should stay on the side lines when it comes to discrediting. Drljača agrees that if foul play is present, the media’s integrity should be preserved, while Đurđica Klancir doesn’t think that bringing out the politicians’ dirty laundry is bad as such, but it is crucial that the media approach it responsibly.