The Philippines has done the “One Step Forward, Two Steps Back” routine once again, this time in World Press Freedom Index.
The Philippines advanced in its overall ranking by moving up three positions in press freedom
However, the country declined when it came to overall media freedom, dropping to a score of 44.66 this year, down from a score of 41.19 last year.
Each year the Paris-based ‘Reporters Without Borders’ ranks countries for their freedoms related to press and media releases.
Reporters Without Borders said the decline in the Philippines’ score reveals “the limits of the reforms and measures taken to improve media freedom and safety.”
The watchdog group said there had been a ‘deep and disturbing decline’ in media freedom at both global and regional levels.
The group has published the World Press Freedom Index each year since 2002. Overall, the index measures the level of freedom available to journalists in 180 countries. Using criteria based on media environment, self-censorship, legislative environment, pluralism, infrastructure, transparency and abuses the group compiles the list.
The top 10 countries in the World Press Freedom Index for 2016 are:
- Finland – 8.59
- Netherlands – 8.76
- Norway – 8.79
- Denmark – 8.89
- New Zealand – 10.01
- Costa Rica – 11.10
- Switzerland – 11.76
- Sweden – 12.33
- Ireland – 12.40
- Jamaica – 12.45
The Philippines has never scored highly on the list. After the November 23, 2009, Maguindanao massacre – where 58 people were killed, including 32 journalists – the country has never been seen as favourable in any type of press freedom light.
The Maguindanao massacre is regarded as the world’s worst atrocity against journalists in history.
To view a complete list of the 180 countries and their rankings in press freedom for 2016, go here