Independent Polish media suspend coverage to protest ad tax

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Independent media outlets in Poland have suspended news coverage and other programming for at least 24 hours to protest a planned new advertising tax. The Polish government says the tax will raise money to bolster state finances badly strained by the coronavirus pandemic. But the media companies view it as an attempt by the right-wing government to undermine press freedoms. Among the major companies that joined the protest on Wednesday was Poland’s leading newspaper, Gazeta Wyborcza. In place of the usual news items on its website was a black screen. Viewers who turned to several TV channels only saw a black screen and the words “Your favorite programming was supposed to be here.”