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Magyar Narancs: Newsstands Selling Print Media With Only State-Sponsored Ads to Get a Discount

Newsstands that “sell or distribute only media products containing public interest announcements and information related to the armed conflict and humanitarian catastrophe on the territory of Ukraine and preventing their consequences for Hungary” do not have to pay a “public-area use” contribution, writes Magyar Narancs in reference to Government Decree 210/2022 (VI. 14.) on rules for Hungary’s state of emergency. The decree was published in the Official Gazette on Tuesday.

While it is unclear what these type of media products could be in practice, the Hungarian weekly has come to the conclusion that the provision provides a discount to newsagents who only sell print media containing government advertising.

If this interpretation is correct, then it appears to be another attempt to remove non-pro-government newspapers and periodicals from public areas and from being sold in newsstands.

Magyar Narancs claims that non-government-friendly print media has been struggling with distribution problems anyway, noting that several grocery chains do not carry their own periodical. [Népszava]

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2 Comments

  1. Misi bacsi

    “Hungarian Politics” has made many contributions in shedding light on the worsening situation in Hungary under the Orban regime. While this story is not surprising, the non Hungarian reader may not appreciate the role of “government” intervention in undermining press freedom. With newsstands already being “taxed”, this additional infringement is another of the salami tactics of this regime so reminiscent of the post World War II communist regime. Of course, the regime has already forced most print media to be “donated” to various regime “foundations”, thereby eliminating most independent voices. And independent television and radio have also largely been eliminated. Thank you for this important story.

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