Only two days after their editor in chief was fired, the majority of Index’s staff handed in their resignations. This is not only to support their colleague, but an unprecedented, powerful, and courageous stance to protect media freedom.
Chief editor of Index Szabolcs Dull was fired from his post last Wednesday, shocking not only the staff but a whole country of devoted readers. To support Dull and the integrity of the news site, almost the entire editorial staff quit by Friday. By Monday this week, 86 people handed in their resignations.
Former editor at Index Tamás Fábián wrote on Facebook:
“If we had stayed, Index would have died slowly. We did not let them quietly let Index bleed out and dishonour everything we have built over the last 21 years.”
The staff was not willing to cave under (political) pressure. They refused to continue working in an environment where they would have had to follow specific instructions on what and how they could write about.
László Bodolai, chief of the foundation that exercises the employer’s rights at Index, initiated the dismissal of Szabolcs Dull. Bodolai claims to have received a ton of CVs from people who are desperate to work for Index. However, other sources claim that Bodolai and his partners keep reaching out for people asking them to come to Index.
Polish newspaper sympathises with Index by a Hungarian message on their cover, hvg reports.
The message reads as:
“Dear Hungarian Friends! We are deeply outraged by the higher power’s brutal attack against Index. We are with you in this difficult hour, admiring your courageous stance. Authoritarian power threatens the free press in Poland too. We are, as many times before throughout history, in need of the Polish-Hungarian solidarity to protect freedom and democracy. We must stick together! The editorial staff of Gazeta Wyborcza.”
Gazeta Wyborcza is a daily newspaper published in Poland. It was Poland’s first post-communist independent daily newspaper. It covers political, international and general news from a liberal perspective.