Final Word from Monday, December 27, 2004





Four recent cases have highlighted MFD's trend toward tabloidization. First, the paper was ordered to pay damages and apologize to APP for linking it unjustly to the Russian mafia. Second, MFD revealed an anonymous source in the Kořistka political-corruption case, violating accepted international rules of journalism. It then crucified choirmaster Bohumil Kulínský for alleged child molestation, based primarily on hearsay. Most recently, it printed unsubstantiated rumors that ex-Sparta coach František Straka had used cocaine. Two of Straka's supporters told Czech Radio that MFD should be shut down for this or fined so heavily that it's forced out of business. This won't happen, but it's true that MFD is steadily losing its credibility. The scandals it uncovers are having increasingly little impact. The messenger is becoming more scandalous than the message. [libel slander Ness Czech Republic Mladá fronta Dnes abuse yellow journalism]

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