Editors of independent media in Serbia speak of N1’s importance on the scene

NEWS 30.10.2021 18:01
Source: N1

On the occasion of the seventh birthday of N1, the editors of independent media in Serbia spoke about the importance of N1 on the media scene in that country.

Branko Cecen, Cins


When N1 appeared, we may not have even known that it would soon become practically the only informative TV that strives to be professional in reporting from all over Serbia.

We didn’t know how precious it would be to us. Now, I believe, we’re aware of that and we don’t take it for granted that, at least with the cable offer at home, we can find out in fifteen minutes what happened today, how it affects our lives and hear the opinions of actors and experts on the news that we follow. I also hope to understand that the pressures and threats towards N1 are actually a threat to our information, which this channel is really a significant part of.

And that means a threat to democracy, the rule of law and our human and civil rights. If that is precious to us, then so is N1.

Dragoljub Draza Petrovic, Danas


N1 is important because it is a better lie detector than a polygraph. That’s why N1 is avoided by all those who „proved“ their innocence by „passing“ the polygraph but are not sure that they would pass N1. It is also important because children can see on N1 what a journalist looks like, a species that is on the verge of extinction in Serbia. N1 is also important because our daily test is that we haven’t gone completely crazy.

The N1 editorial office is a Serbian television journalistic team that helps us stay at least a little bit normal. And I would like to thank them for the therapy.

Veselin Simonovic, Nova.rs

Veselin Simonović
Zoran Lončarević/Nova.rs

I have been in journalism my whole working life, 37 years, and there was a period when I could proudly say what I was doing. Today, I am anxiously answering the question of what my profession is. Liars, racketeers, psychopaths, verbal thugs have multiplied and falsely present themselves as journalists.

There are few professional media left and one N1 of them is. When the journalists of that house ask questions and ask for answers, I am encouraged to say out loud – I am also a journalist. N1 – that’s journalism.

Slobodan Georgiev, Newsmax Adria

FoNet/Božana Pavlica

In the days when this TV was created for people in Serbia, for the most part, it seemed that not everything was so terrible. That we have TV stations and newspapers and portals, that people have a place to find out and see what is happening. That year – 2014 looks like prehistory. Then, as now, the situation was the same: the ruling party took over resources, media and security, and with those steering wheels drove Serbia in a direction that only it, the party, understands.

N1 was supposed to be an elite place in the beginning: an information channel that broadcasts news, which is everywhere where something happens. As the years passed, and faster than it seemed to most, N1 became the only such place.

And now we have this one TV station that deals with all-day reporting on life in Serbia, as much as it can and as much as it is allowed. It seems that journalists work only there while PR services work in other places. That line between propaganda and the search for the truth is key to the stay and survival of journalism in Serbia, and it is not easy for people with N1. They are almost alone in that game and that is why the expectations are huge and that is why patience is thin.

The next seven years will show whether the first seven were seven fat or seven skinny years. I wish them seven fat years.

Stevan Dojcinovic, Krik

Stevan Dojčinović
Izvor: Ivan Dinić/Nova S

N1 is one of the most important media in Serbia – the only television channel where Serbian citizens can get information about what is really happening in the country. Unlike most other televisions that spread propaganda openly, such as Pink, as well as those that do it sophisticatedly, such as, unfortunately, the public service RTS, N1, as a real media, is really in service of the public.

As far as the news program is concerned, N1 has practically taken over the role of public service. This television is also one of the few that enables the discoveries of the media dealing with investigative journalism to reach at least a slightly wider audience.

At a better time, more televisions would have a program like N1. The journalists of this television are also an example of how, despite many years of pressure from the authorities, one can still persevere in independent journalism.

Veljko Lalic, Nedeljnik


N1 is the only successor of the B92 school, and as such, it is incredibly important for our journalism, but also for society as a whole. The right answer to the question „What does N1 mean to you in Serbia today“ would be for me – what if N1 disappeared, went somewhere, what if it was sold in an „enemy takeover“, or if it failed.

I am sure that every free citizen, even the one who is critical of N1, understands that it would mean a media darkness. That is your greatest strength, but also your obligation, both to journalism and to society.

Congratulations on your seventh birthday!

Vesna Malisic, Nin


If it weren’t for N1, the image of Serbia would be just right for the government, which has turned almost all televisions into its strongest political propaganda weapon.

Despite its strategy to push N1 into a position where it would not achieve full dialogue and debate at any cost, everything that this media house, in such impossible conditions, still achieves, when it reports indiscriminately and always on time, when it researches and analyses or when it asks those whose actions are not otherwise questioned – represents an invaluable introduction of light into the darkness of one-mindedness in which the government would shut us all down.

Milorad Ivanovic, Birn

Ivan Dinić/Nova S

In all books of journalism, one of the best examples of independence and professionalism is the one from May 1983, when an English teacher Diana Gould asked the same question to the then Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Margaret Thatcher, in a BBC show: „Why did the British Army near the Falkland Islands, attack the retreating Argentine ship Belgrano, killing 323 soldiers. “ Diana Gould had the support of BBC journalists in the show, while Margaret Thatcher was so out of her mind that after the show she suggested that the BBC be shut down.

Politicians around the world do not like to answer questions, especially when they have something to hide. But the job of us journalists is just that – to ask questions professionally and look for answers.

The best example can be seen in the recent case from N1 television, when my colleague Vojislav Stevanovic asked the same question to the official of the Serbian Progressive Party, Aleksandar Sapic, nine times. Of course, he did not receive an answer, but that did not stop him from continuing to search for the truth.

Unfortunately, Serbia does not have a public service paid for by all citizens of this country who, like the British BBC, would „question“ politicians and seek answers.

Fortunately, the citizens of Serbia have N1, whose journalists, despite numerous pressures, know what their job is, and they do it very well.

We wish our colleagues from N1 a happy birthday and many, many more questions that they will ask those who have to answer them.


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