The communication and circulation of ideas may not be restricted by any indirect means, such as abuse of government or private control over the media.
- The right of expression may not be restricted by indirect method or means, such as the abuse of government or private controls over newsprint, radio broadcasting frequencies, or equipment used in the dissemination of information, or by any other means tending to impede the communication and circulation of ideas and opinions.
- States should adopt specific measures to protect the editorial independence and operational autonomy of public service media by limiting the influence of the State. The supervisory and management boards of public service media should be able to operate in a fully independent manner and the rules governing their composition and appointment procedures should be transparent and contain adequate checks and balances to ensure their independence.
- States should put in place a range of measures, including those highlighted in our Joint Declaration of 12 December 2007, to create an environment in which a pluralistic media sector can flourish. These should include, among others, obligations of transparency of media ownership, licensing of different types of broadcasters to promote diversity, rules to prevent undue concentration of media ownership and measures to promote content diversity among and within media outlets.
- States should put in place effective systems for preventing threats and attacks against the media and others exercising their right to freedom of expression, and for investigating such attacks when they do occur, bringing those responsible to justice and compensating victims. This obligation takes on particular significance during election periods.
- The media should be free to report on election-related matters. They should also be exempted from liability for disseminating unlawful statements made directly by parties or candidates – whether in the context of live broadcasting or advertising – unless the statements have been ruled unlawful by a court or the statements constitute direct incitement to violence and the media outlet had an opportunity to prevent their dissemination.