Estonian newspaper seeking to influence voters?

The Estonian daily Postimees has published a "Vote Compass" aimed at helping the citizens decide how to vote in the run-up to the parliamentary elections on March 3. Politicians were interviewed in advance about the questions contained in the compass. But according to other Estonian media outlets there can be no talk of this being an unbiased tool for voters.

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Eesti Päevaleht (EE) /

Manipulation with suggestive questions

Eesti Päevaleht criticises the conservative character of the questions in the "Vote Compass":

“Conservative views are already built into questions like 'Is marriage a better form of cohabitation than loose partnerships?' or 'Is it right for women to put their career before bringing up children and taking care of the family?' or 'Is abortion an acceptable method for family planning?', so that the answers are guided in a certain direction. Several politicians have decided not to answer the questions because they consider them one-sided and don't want to talk to the Institute for Social Studies, which is known for spreading a conservative world view.”

Äripäev (EE) /

Media being turned into tools for ideology

The owner of Eesti Meedia Publishers, which puts out Postimees, wants to impose his national conservative world view on the publication, fears Meelis Mandel, editor-in-chief of Äripäev:

“Whereas in the past we could believe that Margus Linnamäe just wanted to make money and do advertising for his other business interests with the acquisition of Eesti Meedia, now we must recognise that purportedly independent media are being used to do propaganda for a certain ideology and certain politicians. With concern I observe what Linnamäe is doing with Postimees. ... When one of the three most important media channels in the country is being used as a tool by a single man, this has an impact on the entire media sector and by extension on democracy. To put it drastically, the curtain has fallen.”