[FoME] Media experts analyse hate speech in Macedonian, Bulgarian media

Sofie Jannusch Sofie.Jannusch at CAMECO.ORG
Di Mär 1 11:48:41 CET 2011

25/02/2011 Media experts analyse hate speech in Macedonian, Bulgarian media 

Excerpt of report by Macedonian newspaper Utrinski Vesnik on 25 February 
[Report by Dimitar Culev: "From Media Prejudice to Wars Between Bloggers"]

"Censorship is not the solution. Hate speech has nothing to do with the media, blogs, and communication on social networks.... The essence of hate speech is hatred. While there are no blatant manifestations of hate speech in the Macedonian and Bulgarian media, the presence of a prior position that 'there exists a problem' can be noted. Therefore, let us make it explicit."

The above was just one part of the debate that took place at yesterday's launch of the study entitled "Hate Speech in Bulgarian and Macedonian Media: Examples, Reasons, and Solutions," - http://www.osf.bg/downloads/File/HateSpeech_Report_EN.pdf - which has been published as a joint project of the NGO Centre for Development of Media in Macedonia and the Bulgaria-based Pro Media. ) The book features an extensive analysis of the hate speech phenomenon ... and is the result of the monitoring of the Bulgarian and Macedonian media in the period between 20 July and 20 August last year. This time frame was chosen for the project (carried out within the framework of the cross-border cooperation between the two organizations, both of them helped by Soros foundation) because of the Ilinden uprising - or as the Bulgarians refer to it, the Prebraze uprising - and the fact that it is subject to "specific interest and treatment" by the media in both countries. (For brief background information see DW-Kalenderblatt: http://www.kalenderblatt.de/index.php?what=thmanu&manu_id=970&tag=2&monat=8&weekd=&weekdnum=&year=2014&lang=de&dayisset=1)
Bulgarian media expert Aleksandar Kashunov pointed to six different types of contents that incite hatred; these are: requests to establish historic truth, requests that the two countries should celebrate joint historic personalities together, and calls for heroic attitude, similar to that of dukes in the past.
"Particularly dangerous are the negative assessments of Macedonia (as an artificial creation that steals other people's history), the negative remarks regarding Macedonians (regarding the inferiority complexes of those in Skopje), and the negative remarks regarding the Macedonian Government (about the sorts of ideas in the empty heads....)"
A cause for concern at the moment are the "bloggers' wars," which cannot be monitored, analysed, or prevented. Bulgarian and Macedonian nationalists, who have been trained to be full of hatred, organize themselves into groups of between 10 and several thousands. The most base insults, threats, swear words, and slander could be read among the thousands of comments and altercations under the Youtube platform porn video entitled "Macedonian Girl." Delcev [Macedonian revolutionary], history, and Alexander [the Great] were mentioned in the above.

Source: Utrinski Vesnik, Skopje, in Macedonian 25 Feb 11 
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