Between neutrality and engagement: Political journalism in Hungary
(Budapest Business school, Hungary)
ABSTRACT: After the political transformation, Hungarian journalism organizations and media policy makers attempted to introduce the standards and practices of neutrality-seeking journalism, yet most news outlets continued to off er engaged accounts of political events and issues. Why was the professionalization of journalism interrupted? This paper attempts to answer this question by off ering an overview of the comparative media systems literature in search of the factors shaping journalism practices and by placing Hungary on the map of media systems. Then it suggests that diff erent audience needs may be an additional factor explaining the dominance of different journalism practices in different media systems, with the public in transition societies seeking confirmation rather than information when using the media.