Compiled with the help of Stefan Antonov, Business journalist and former Reuters Institute Journalist Fellow.
Politicians have strengthened their influence over the media in recent years. The links between television stations and other media range from shared business interests to direct ownership. Growing internet penetration and greater use of digital media represent some progress for a country with a rapidly ageing population.
Note: Data are from more urban areas, rather than a fully nationally representative sample. These will tend to represent richer and more connected users.
Television remains an important source of news in Bulgaria, with many of the main TV networks now owned by businessmen with political connections. Independent media still operate in print and online while social media news use is amongst the highest in Europe.
Many news organisations in Bulgaria have become reliant on funding from pro-government oligarchs or foreign foundations. This in turn may have reduced independence and trust – down seven percentage points this year. Public broadcasters BNT and BNR are less popular in terms of reach than commercial rivals, but remain the most trusted for news in our survey.