Last Updated: Friday, 19 September 2014, 13:55 GMT

Freedom of the Press 2008 - Barbados

Publisher Freedom House
Publication Date 29 April 2008
Cite as Freedom House, Freedom of the Press 2008 - Barbados, 29 April 2008, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4871f5ee1e.html [accessed 21 September 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Status: Free
Legal Environment: 3 (of 30)
Political Environment: 10 (of 40)
Economic Environment: 6 (of 30)
Total Score: 19 (of 100)
(Lower scores = freer)

Freedom of the press is constitutionally guaranteed, and media are generally able to operate without restriction. However, Barbados has not yet passed freedom of information legislation. In the run-up to the general election due in January 2008, the media environment became increasingly polarized. In addition, both the ruling Barbados Labour Party (BLP) and the main opposition party, the Democratic Labour Party, made increasing use of the internet in the context of the widespread access to computers and the internet in Barbados. Political blogs also grew in popularity and two of them in particular, Barbados Free Press and Barbados Underground, drew large numbers of visitors for their exposés of government misdemeanours and hypocrisy. In late December, one contributor to these two blogs, hotelier Adrian Loveridge, informed the police that he and his wife had been subjected to repeated death threats, including promises to burn down their hotel. The threats appeared to be politically motivated on behalf of the ruling BLP. There are two daily newspapers and two weeklies, all privately-owned. A new weekly was launched in January but soon folded. Of the 11 radio frequencies, 3 are run by the state-owned Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation, which also operates the sole television station. There are no government restrictions on the internet which was accessed by nearly 60 percent of the population in 2007.

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