POLAND. Critical junctures in the media transformation process.



This report discusses the cultural conditions for media and democracy monitoring abilities considering Poland’s critical junctures. Through an in-depth examination of the turning points in media technology, politics, and culture from 2000–2020, evidence of the cultural blend of political power and the media as a mismatch between democratic law-making (standards setting) and standards implementation (self-regulation included). The highly interwoven social layers of media transformations prove a high level of political parallelism, the multiplication of codes of journalistic and societal polarisation, the most critical risks in Poland’s trajectory of media freedom. Following the Mediadelcom methodology, opportunities and risks for media and democracy are analysed in connection with 1) Legal regulations and ethics, 2) Journalism studies, 3) Media usage patterns and 4) Media education and literacy. The report highlights the most critical knowledge share gaps, which include looking at media from the perspective of agency of change (actors + time) and collaboration between the media industry and scholars. To this end, this study calls for the cultural contexts alongside in-depth research on organisations (working conditions, workplace diversity, management systems and structures) and the culture of media and democracy stakeholders (people and their values, pride, satisfaction, and motivation).