The Nézőpont Institute has once again carried out an analysis of Hungary’s international media presence. The media survey looked at some 10,955 news items about Hungary from 103 politically relevant media products (57 print and 46 online media outlets) in 18 countries, published in 15 different languages. The evaluation analysis was conducted by language, volume and polarity of media coverage in media sources.

  • Last year, the Serbian and Slovakian media published the most news about Hungary, with an average of 214 and 206 publications per year per media product, respectively. They were followed, in descending order, by media outlets in the Croatian (184), Romanian (148), Slovenian (142), Russian (139), Polish (129), Ukrainian (92), Czech (91), German (87), Spanish (84), English (83), French (73), Italian (53) and Hebrew (26) languages.
  • The most intense weeks of international news coverage of Hungary can be linked to events that have triggered criticism in the Western media coverage. Such periods included the introduction of Eastern Covid-19 vaccines in Hungary, the adoption of the Child Protection Act, and the withholding of EU recovery funds.
  • In terms of polarity, media coverage was grouped into three categories based on the positive, neutral and negative tones of the coverage of events related to the country. Only 19 percent of international news stories in the reviewed media products presented a positive image of Hungary, while the proportions of neutral (40 percent) and negative (41 percent) stories were roughly equal.
  • The predominance of negative media coverage of Hungary is mainly due to the critical framing of news covered in the mainstream Western European media. The proportion of news items with a negative representation of Hungary was above 60 percent in the Spanish (76 percent), French (76 percent), Italian (64 percent) and German (62 percent) language media, while the proportion of positive articles was below 10 percent. The English-language press also showed a predominance of negative polarity coverage (38 per cent) as opposed to positive (4 per cent), whereas neutral news coverage prevailed (58 per cent)
  • In contrast, the Visegrád countries gave balanced coverage of events in Hungary, with 41 percent of the Polish, 37 percent of the Czech and 35 percent of the Slovak media reporting in a positive tone, and a similar proportion (36 percent, 28 percent and 37 percent, respectively) reporting negative news about Hungary.

Overall, the Western press was more biased in its coverage of events in Hungary than the Eastern European and Central European media. Fifty-six percent of the former’s news stories were critical and only 4 percent positive, while the latter’s were much more evenly balanced at 31 percent to 29 percent.

Please click here to access the full analysis in Hungarian.