Europe

Poland profile - Media

Newspaper kiosk in Poland Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption There are hundreds of newspaper titles, many of them local and regional

Poland's broadcasting market is the largest in Eastern and Central Europe.

TV is the leading medium and three players - state-owned TVP and privately-owned TVN and Polsat - dominate the market.

Many non-state media outlets are owned by foreign concerns, particularly German companies. Agora - the publisher of Gazeta Wyborcza newspaper - is the main domestic media group.

There are hundreds of newspaper titles, most of them local or regional. The top-selling tabloid, Fakt, is owned by Germany-based publisher Axel Springer.

The constitution guarantees freedom of expression and forbids censorship.

But critics cried foul when the newly-elected conservative Law and Justice government introduced a bill in late 2015 to allow ministers to appoint the heads of TVP and public Polish Radio. The move prompted the European Commission to look into any potential threat to freedom of expression.

The public media "have been transformed into government propaganda mouthpieces", Reporters Without Borders said in 2018.

Freedom House says private media that criticise the government have experienced pressure from regulators and a fall in advertising revenue from state-run companies.

Some ruling party members have called for changes in the law to reduce foreign ownership of the media, advocating a "repolonisation" of the sector.

There were nearly 30 million internet users by the end of 2017 (InternetWorldStats.com). Facebook is the leading social network.

The press

Television

  • Telewizja Polska (TVP) - public, operates national, regional and thematic networks
  • TVN - commercial, also operates news channel TVN 24
  • Polsat - commercial channel and pay-TV operator
  • Cyfra+ - pay-TV operator

Radio

  • Polish Radio - public, operates five national networks and many regional stations
  • TheNews.pl - Polish Radio's news site, in English
  • RMF FM - commercial
  • Radio Zet - commercial
  • Radio Maryja - controversial Catholic station, run by Redemptorist Order

News agency/internet