Free Media Awards

The ‘Free Media Awards’ is the name of the press prizes awarded by the two foundations The Fritt Ord Foundation and ZEIT-Stiftung. The prizes seek to highlight and strengthen the independent role of journalists,

The prizes provide support for journalists and media that report independently and refuse to give up in the face of threats.

The media operate under tremendous pressure in many countries in Eastern Europe. With the Free Media Awards, we aspire to encourage journalists and media to carry on their work, despite threats and violent oppression. With the Free Media Awards, we seek to express our respect and admiration in an effort to strengthen independent journalism.

The prize laureates themselves decide how the prize money will be spent, as long as it benefits the individual newspaper or journalist. The Fritt Ord Foundation and the ZEIT Foundation have been awarding press prizes to media in Russia and Eastern Europe since 2004.

The prize laureates are chosen on the basis of nominations, which are then reviewed by an independent jury. The jury for the Free Media Awards consists of Alice Bota, Moscow correspondent for the weekly newspaper DIE ZEIT, Ane Tusvik Bonde, senior advisor at the Human Rights House Foundation, Oslo, Juri Durkot, journalist and translator, Lviv, Ukraine, Guri Norstrøm, foreign correspondent for the Norwegian National Broadcasting Corporation (NRK), Oslo, Martin Paulsen, Eastern Europe expert with a PhD in Russian language from the University of Bergen, and Silvia Stöber, freelance journalist specialized in the development in Eastern Europe, South Caucasus and Central Asia for the German ARD and other media.The Fritt Ord Foundation and the ZEIT Foundation awards 3 to 5 prizes annually.

Prize recipients