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Media accountability is a phrase that refers to the general (especially western) belief that mass media has to be accountable in the public’s interest - that is, they are expected to behave in certain ways that contribute to the public good.
The concept is not clearly defined, and often collides with commercial interests of media owners; legal issues, such as the constitutional right to the freedom of the press in the U.S.; and governmental concerns about public security and order.
Several international organizations, like International Freedom of Expression Exchange, Freedom House, International Press Institute, World Press Freedom Committee and the Inter-American Press Association, watch over governmental control of the press.