North Korea Political Orientation
MBFC’s Country Freedom Rating: 12.36 – Total Oppression
World Press Freedom Rank: North Korea 180/180
Reporters Without Borders ranked North Korea at the bottom of its yearly Press Freedom Index 180/180 (2022), criticizing the lack of press freedom, stating that North Korea “ tightly controls information and strictly prohibits independent journalism.”
Media Ownership and Government Analysis
North Korea is a one-party state led by Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un. The Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) is the only ruling party, and Kim Jong-un is the current WPK leader, serving as General Secretary of the WPK.
The government of Kim Jong-un has a total information monopoly and controls the press. Further, The government “owns all North Korean news outlets of which all the reporters are party members under strict scrutiny to uphold government-approved journalistic standards.”
The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) is North Korea’s official national news service. The most crucial newspaper is Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the Workers’ Party of Korea, with news dedicated to Kim Jong-un. The newspaper has a section titled “WPK General Secretary Kim Jong Un’s Revolutionary Activities.” Examples of news headlines of Rodong Sinmun are: “Respected Comrade Kim Jong Un Has Photo Session with Students and Working Youths.” And “Respected Comrade Kim Jong Un Has Photo Session with Participants in Military Parade.”
Another influential newspaper is Minju Choson. It is North Korea’s official government newspaper, which focuses on governmental affairs. Korea Central TV (KCTV) is a state-owned broadcaster, and the Korean Central Broadcasting Committee operates it. According to the BBC North Korea country profile, “Radio and TV sets in North Korea are pre-tuned to government stations that pump out a steady stream of propaganda.”
In summary, North Korea lacks press freedom as the government owns and controls the media and routinely promotes the regime’s ideologies and their supreme leader. The people of North Korea are closed off from the rest of the world due to oppressive censorship and propaganda.
Last Updated on May 13, 2023 by Media Bias Fact Check
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