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Throughout this month, following the announcement of the formation of the self-styled Association of Media Owners, I wrote two columns in which I explained this website’s take on the fact that the companies which back the biggest independent news outlets in the country – Allied Newspapers Ltd (Times of Malta), Standard Publications (The Malta Independent), and MediaToday (MaltaToday) – formed an association that is partially made up of propaganda outlets owned by the Labour Party and the Nationalist Party. You can read the first column here, and the second one here.

In the second column I penned about this subject, I publicly announced that I would be sending questions to all three newsrooms to assess their position. Shortly after Times of Malta editor-in-chief Herman Grech sent me his answers to my questions earlier this morning (you can read those answers by clicking here), MaltaToday’s executive editor Kurt Sansone also sent in his responses, which can be read here.

Following the receipt of responses from both Times of Malta and MaltaToday, I published a column in which I expressed my thoughts in reaction to the statements sent in by the aforementioned newsrooms. Given that The Malta Independent had not sent an acknowledgement that questions were received in spite of multiple reminders, the column was published and updated with The Malta Independent’s statement when it was sent the following day.

The Malta Independent’s editor-in-chief, Stephen Calleja, sent in his responses this morning. The responses are being reproduced below.


1) Can you confirm whether editorial and the journalists who form part of your newsroom were consulted about the respective company’s decision to join the Association of Media Owners before the decision was made?

No, we were not consulted.

2) Who is your company’s representative on the association’s executive branch and what role do they occupy? How was your representative selected?

Please pass on this question to the management. Editorial is not part of the association.

3) What is your newsroom’s stance on the fact that you are now associated directly with political party propaganda outlets?

The association’s statement makes it clear that it was formed to seek the members’ interests. The Malta Independent editorial team does not have a link or connection with political party media.

4) For a media company to be able to join your association, it must have at least seven full-time journalists and at least three media workers. What was the reason for this specific criterion?

This question needs to be addressed to the association.

5) If and when your association manages to secure funding from the government, will your newsroom declare how much funding it has received and for what purpose it will be used? If so, how does your newsroom plan on doing so?

As explained earlier, editorial has no role in the association and cannot speak on its behalf. It is not “our” association, as the question says.

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