In 2007, the Tunisian government's Website counted 245 daily newspapers and reviews, grown from 91 in 1987.
These are in large part (90%) owned by private groups and individuals, with much of the press dominated by discussion of government matters. On April 29, 2011, the Minister of the Interior announced authorization was granted to 51 new newspapers and reviews published since the beginning of the revolution.
The first daily newspaper printed in Tunisia appeared on July 22, 1860 under the name Arra'id Attunisi
, calling itself "The official journal of the Tunisian Republic", founded by the ruler of that period, Sadok Bey
attacks by the Colonial Party and its Editor in Chief, Victor de Carnières
, pushed Tunisian intellectuals to launch Le Tunisien
in 1907, the first newspaper in the French language in Tunisia, with the aim of influencing the authorities of the Protectorate of Tunisia
and French public opinion.
Starting from that date, the number of French-language titles grew to reach 41 in 1956, while the Arab-language press counted 288 titles by that year.
At the beginning of 1991, there were six French language dailies, and nine in Arabic; there were 140 weeklies — 45 in French — and 160 monthly publications.
Tunisian political parties had the right to publish their own newspapers but those of the political opposition were only published intermittently.
Faced with this situation, in 1991 the government issued a grant of 30,000 Tunisian dinars
to each of the parties. Other assistance was also provided to cover other expenses (paper, postage, and so on), but appeared to be granted under unclear criteria.
In a decree amending the law in 1999 relating to public financing of political parties, the government allocated a grant of 120,000 dinars
to political party publications and 30,000 dinars
to other periodicals. These mechanisms constituted a pressure tactic that the government could use on newspapers that expressed too much criticism of the regime.
The Code de la presse de 1975 was revised on August 2, 1988, on July 23, 1993, and on May 3, 2001. It notably banned publications that disturbed public order or "defamed" the authorities, even if the allegations had been proven.
The crime of "defaming public order" was removed from legislation, as was the administrative formality of preemptive filing of newspapers with the Minister of the Interior before publication, on May 27, 2005.
Freedom of the press
is guaranteed by the Constitution of Tunisia
, although in practice, it has been usual for publications to follow the government line without a critical perspective, and to report the activities of the president, the government and the ruling party, based on dispatches issued by the government Tunis Afrique Presse
. This agency has in the past examined some of the subjects "not to the liking of the government." A report by the UN Human Rights Committee in 2000 showed that despite the 188 titles in the Tunisian press, it was marked by its "uniformity of tone". This was recognized by the President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali
and Prime Minister Hamed Karoui
without introducing significant change. According to Lise Garon, the press followed "an imperious demand to show a smooth image to the outside world", resulting in a kind of "internal unanimity".
All newspapers and magazines, comprising opposition publications, can benefit from advertising
revenue, whether public or private enterprise. However, La Presse de Tunisie
, owned by a public company (Société nouvelle d'impression, de presse et d'édition), has held a virtual monopoly, including with respect to Arab-language publications.
Magazines on economic affairs
The institutional Tunisian press is frequently accused by large international newspapers of plagiarism
. There have been incidents where print publications have been found to have translated and published material taken from blogs
and other online authors, without seeking permission.
Radio and television
Audiovisual media has long been under the domination of the Établissement de la Radiodiffusion-Télévision Tunisienne (ERTT) and its predecessor, Radiodiffusion-télévision tunisienne, founded in 1957. The President of Tunisia, Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali
announced on November 7, 2006 the splitting up of the organization on August 31, 2007 into separate entities that would oversee Tunisian television broadcasting and Tunisian radio broadcasting.
The Établissement de la télévision tunisienne
manages the public television stations (Watanya 1
and Watanya 2
which replaced the defunct RTT 2
). Since government policy changes in 2003, the television industry has been opened up to the private sector. This resulted in two new channels on Tunisian television: Hannibal TV
and Nessma EU
, and after the Tunisian Revolution
several new private channels founded as El-Hiwar Ettounsy
, TNN Tunisia News Network
and Elhiwar Ettounsi
Television in Tunisia reaches 94% of households. The dominant platform in the market is free satellite, though terrestrial platform reaches around 15% of the households.
- ^ (in French) Presse et communication en Tunisie (Tunisie.com) Archived 2012-03-19 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ (in French) « 63 nouveaux partis politiques, 66 refusés et 49 demandes en instance », Business News, 29 avril 2011
- ^ (in French) Tunisie (Arab Press Network)Archived 2011-09-29 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ (in French) Aux sources de l'édition arabophone en Tunisie Archived 2011-08-18 at the Wayback Machine par Jamel Zran
- ^ Yves Lacoste et Camille Lacoste-Dujardin [sous la dir. de], L'état du Maghreb, éd. La Découverte, Paris, 1991, p. 410 ISBN 2707120146
- ^ a b Gilles Kraemer, La presse francophone en Méditerranée : regain et perspectives, éd. Maisonneuve et Larose, Paris, 2001, pp. 164-165
- ^ Gilles Kraemer, op. cit., p. 158
- ^ Gilles Kraemer, op. cit., pp. 43-44
- ^ Gilles Kraemer, op. cit., p. 186
- ^ Gilles Kraemer, op. cit., p. 61
- ^ (in French) Oualid Chine, « Tunisie : la presse imprimée piégée sur le web », Tekiano, 2 juillet 2009
- ^ (in French) Presse sportive en Tunisie : du plagiat au manque de professionnalisme... (Espérance sportive de Tunis)
- ^ (in French) Nizar Bahloul, « Tunisie : Rafâa Dekhil à la recherche de lendemains prospères pour la presse électronique », Business News, 3 décembre 2008
Last edited on 23 February 2021, at 11:11
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