Costa Rica Loses Ground In Press Freedom Ranking

October 23, 2009

Costa Rica fell eight slots, landing behind Ghana, Uruguay and Cyprus, in a press freedom evaluation conducted this year.

According to Reporters Without Borders, which has compiled the list since 2002, the country’s archaic legislation and outdated defamation practices caused it to sink in the 2009 survey.

Combine a standstill attitude to media treatment with breakthroughs in other countries, and it’s easy to see why Costa Rica fell in the rankings, said Benoît Hervieu, Americas correspondent with Reporters Without Borders.

“In reality, 10 points isn’t much. But the cessation of Costa Rica explains why other countries rose,” he wrote in an e-mail to The Tico Times.

Eduardo Ulibarri, president of the Institute for the Press and Freedom of Expression (IPLEX) and former editor of the leading daily La Nación, admits that Costa Rica is dragging its feet.

“One of the principle threats that I see is that we don’t advance; that we stay in the same position that we are in,” said Ulibarri, who would like to see new legislation protecting journalists in cases relating to defamation and better access to public records.

There is legislation protecting journalists from imprisonment for defamation languishing in the Legislative Assembly, but no legislator has yet made a move to revive it.

Costa Rica is ranked 30 this year, far ahead of neighboring Panama (55) and Nicaragua (76). On the extremes, Denmark came in first and the African country of Eritrea placed last, at 175.

Countries are judged on protection given to journalists, changes in legislation and access to information, among other criteria.

–Chrissie Long

 

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

Alajuelense eliminated in the Costa Rican Clausura
Soccer
4 views
Soccer
4 views

Alajuelense eliminated in the Costa Rican Clausura

AFP and The Tico Times - April 21, 2019

Liga Deportiva Alajuelense tied 2-2 against the reigning champion, Club Sport Herediano, and was eliminated from the semifinals of the…

Costa Rica bets on ending fossil fuel use by 2050
Climate Change
42 views
Climate Change
42 views

Costa Rica bets on ending fossil fuel use by 2050

Marco Sibaja / AFP - April 21, 2019

Eric Orlich and his wife Gioconda Rojas own two electric vehicles, which they charge at home in the garage thanks…

Pic of the Day: Costa Rica’s Isla Nublar (aka Cocos Island)
Pic of the Day
98 views
Pic of the Day
98 views

Pic of the Day: Costa Rica’s Isla Nublar (aka Cocos Island)

Alejandro Zúñiga - April 18, 2019

Isla Nublar, the setting for much of the "Jurassic Park" series, is unfortunately not a real Costa Rican island. Cocos…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!