Rodoljub Sabic, Commissioner for InformationA long time ago, in the middle of the century before last, a very important man in our politics, at that time an earl and aspirant to the throne, later king Petar I Karadjordjevic, translated to Serbian the famous work by John Stewart Miles ''About freedom'' making it thus possible for generations of our politicians to get acquainted in their mother tongue with the ideas of the great founder of liberalism. One of these which has been built into the very foundations of tolerance and democracy is that ''if an individual has a different view from the rest of mankind, it would be equally unjustified if mankind were to shut up this one individual, just as if this one person, if he had such power, were to shut up the whole mankind.''
Unfortunately, even one and a half centuries later it is not an infrequent case that we hear that someone, on one or another level, had forbidden some mass media to be present, i.e. to report about a certain event. Such actions by the ''powerful'' certainly deserve even greater attention and stronger reactions than those expressed until now. Because even if it were their own ''private thing'' whether they like other people's ideas, including those of John Stewart Miles, this does certainly not entail that they can decide whether they will respect laws or not. And they would have to know that our law on public information foresees that ''State authorities and organizations, bodies of territorial autonomy and local self-administration, public services and public companies ... are obliged to make the information about their work accessible to the public and this means under equal conditions to all public mass media.''