Forty pct of Poles think gov wants to silence media with ad tax

Poland’s conservative government has attempted to silence anti-government media by taxing their advertising revenue, according to 40 percent of Poles surveyed by private pollster IBRiS, the Rzeczpospolita daily said on Thursday.

At the same time 25 percent of those polled said the purpose of the tax was to force foreign media corporations operating in Poland to pay taxes in Poland. The smallest amount of surveyed Poles (22 percent) believed the government's official explanation that the tax was meant to secure additional income for the state budget.

The government’s plan has been criticised by the media, the opposition and some politicians within the ruling coalition. According to the Dziennik Gazeta Prawna (DGP) daily, the conservative cabinet was to water down the bill before sending it to the parliament for approval.

The view that the aim of the levy was to tax foreign media operators was shared by nearly 70 percent of respondents who supported the government, while 71 percent of opposition supporters said the purpose was to muzzle government-critical media.