Rich journalistic and editorial harvest: How did freedom fall?


According to the index of press freedom, Macedonia fell by 49 places in six years. In 2010 we were on the 68th place, while today, according to “Reporters without borders”, we find ourselves 117 place.

According to the annual reports, closure of many media, the use of advertising space as a tool for “educating” the media, the large number of court cases against journalists and replacement of editors contributed to the poor state of the media in Macedonia.

In recent years, the whole media scene in Macedonia was turned upside down. It is difficult to precisely say how many journalistic and editorial transfers and replacement there were, though some argue that there were 50 departures or replacements of editors and journalists because of pressures or because of the will of the owners in five years.

Meanwhile, several print and electronic media were extinguished.

  • Here’s how the process flowed.

The last replacement occurred in February this year, when the editor-in-chief of the portal “Telegraph”, owned by MPM, Ivana Kostovska resign. As media reported, she submitted her resignation on the editorial position because of pressure from the management. Earlier, editor-in-chief of this portal was Zoran Richliev, who was replaced, and later even left MPM.

In July 2014, after the arrival of Atanas Kirovski on the leading position in TV “Telma”, on which he replaced the previous head Risto Lazarov, who retired, long-year editor Emilija Lazarevska was also replaced from her leading position in the news of this television.

In February 2014, editor-in-chief of “Nova Makedonija” Zoran Dimitrov was fired. According to him, the owner explained that he was fired because he violated professional journalistic standards and carried out political manipulation.

In March 2013, journalist Bogdanka Kuzevska was promoted editor-in-chief of TV “24 Vesti”, while Bobi Hristov was replaced. In that period, Zoran Ivanov was appointed as program director at “24 Vesti”, who, after he was fired from “Alfa”, publicly stated that he was leaving journalism and returns all awards he received. However, Kuzevska held this position only for a few months, after which, she was replaced by Goce Mihajlovski. However, he was recently replaced by Sead Rizvanovik. Mihajlovski resigned and posted on “Facebook”:

“Sometimes we had different opinions on the part of the program with the management, but it is neither the main nor the only reason for my withdrawal.”

In 2013, in television “Alfa”,Zoran Ivanov, who resigned, was replaced by Kole Chashule, who was editor of the daily “Den”, which came out about a year.

InNovember 2012, Zoran Andonovski, editor-in-chief of “Dnevnik” resigned, due to, as some media reported, professional reasons.

“I submitted the resignation from professional reasons, because I could not run the newspaper as I feel it is necessary. Officially, as of today I’m on vacation,” stated Andonovski at the time for the media.

Andonovski was replaced by Darko Janevski who, in turn, was editor of “Nova Makedonija”.

In 2011, Zoran Dimitrov was replaced as editor-in-chief of “Dnevnik”, who was succeeded by Sasho Kokalanov, who was later appointed editor in the online edition. After a few months, he left MPM.

Three chief editors were replaced in “Utrinski vesnik” in 2012. After Ljupcho Popovski, the baton was taken over by Nina Nineska-Fidanoska, and only a few months later, she was replaced by Sonja Kramarska, who still holds the office.

In September 2012, Goran Petreski took over the editorial position of news on MTV.

In 2009, Aco Kabranov was replaced as editor-in-chief of “Kanal 5”, who later founded portal “Libertas”. In place of Kabranov, Lidija Bogatinova was appointed editor-in-chief at the television, who is still on the job. Kabranov later became editor-in-chief in television “Alfa”, but he left the job in 2011.

  • Closing media

In 2013 , daily newspaper “Kapital”, which editor was Spasijka Jovanovska, was closed. A dozen journalists were also fired.

In 2013, daily newspaper “Fokus”, which owner was Nikola Mladenov and editor-in-chief – Branko Geroski – was also closed.

In 2012, daily “Den”, which editor was Kole Chashule, went bankrupt.

In 2012, weekly “Gragjanski”, which editor-in-chief was Mile Jovanovski and executive editor was Katerina Blazhevska, was opened. She previously was editor-in-chief of the newspaper “Dnevnik”. However, the weekly was closed in 2013. Vasko Popetreski, who at one point was editor in television “Kanal 5” and in “Dnevnik”, also worked there.

In 2011, three media from one group – the empire of Velija Ramkovski – were closed. Newspapers “Shpic”, which editor-in-chief was Branko Geroski, “Vreme” that was led by Kole Chashule and TV “A1,” with Mladen Chadikovski as editor-in-chief, were closed. Magazine “1E”, which editor was Anita Kochishki, who was later accused of criminal association and was sentenced to two years with probation, was also closed. Dozens of journalists from this group remained jobless.

In 2011, “Forum”, which was under the baton of Atanas Kirovski, who from 2014 is the new director and editor-in-chief of TV “Telma”, and “Life Magazine,” which editor was Ljupcho Jolevski, were closed. These were media of IT company “Seavus”. Decision on closure of the media was done without any notice. On 31st of August 2011, the journalists were told that these media will no longer go out from 1st of September 2011. Of the three media, only news agency “Makfax” continued functioning.

In 2009 , magazine “Globus,” edited by Branko Trichkovski, was closed. Dozens of journalists remained jobless, including former employees of “Utrinski vesnik”, who were redirected to the project “Globus”, which was licensed by the Croatian weekly, by the management of MPM.

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