Press Freedom Index: Finland slides again, Norway stays ahead

Finland drops one rank in the Press Freedom Index. (Henrietta Hassinen/Yle)
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) published its annual Press Freedom Index on Thursday, placing Finland in fourth position. It’s the second year in a row that Finland has dropped down the Index.

The NGO said that source protection in Finland had been endangered by the scandal over and investigation into Helsingin Sanomat’s reporting around a military intelligence facility. Police confiscated a journalist’s equipment as part of that probe during a search of the reporter’s home.

Last year Finland had dropped from first to third position on RSF’s index as a result of the scandal over Yle’s reporting of Prime Minister Juha Sipilä’s links to a family firm that won contracts from a state-owned mine.

Two journalists later resigned from Yle over that affair, citing what they deemed to be interference in their work.

Norway first, North Korea last

Norway and Sweden are in first and second positions, with Holland in third. Denmark dropped to fifth after the death of Kim Wall on assignment in Copenhagen in August 2017.

North Korea is in last spot in the index.

RSF says in its press release it is concerned about the trend towards politicians in many parts of the world questioning the credibility of journalists and their reporting.

Related stories from around the North:

Canada: About that bear – Why the media keeps getting the Arctic wrong, Blog by Heather Exner-Pirot

Finland: Norway and Sweden surpass Finland in 2017 press freedom rankings, Yle News

Norway: Expelled Barents Observer editor is on Russian sanction list, The Independent Barents Observer

Russia: Report: Russia spread fake news and disinformation in Sweden, Radio Sweden

Sweden: Rural citizen journalism and fake news in the spotlight in North Sweden, Radio Sweden

United States: Alaska’s largest newspaper files for bankruptcy; new publishers emerge, Alaska Dispatch News

Yle News

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