Slobodna BiH with the editorial board in Split and only a handful of employees in Bosnia-Hercegovina was from the start a highly indigestible instant product, but even the way it was, with all of its problems and weaknesses, it was the only Croat daily newspaper in Bosnia-Hercegovina. A rather clumsy choice for the name of the paper, as well as conceptual misses in the sense that at times the paper had very little content related to Bosnia-Hercegovina, were such that it was unlikely that Slobodna BiH would achieve a high circulation. However, unofficial data claims that on average 5,000 copies were sold daily, which isn't all that bad if one keeps in mind that the only Croat daily newspaper in Bosnia-Hercegovina was basically a substitute for the Split Slobodna Dalmacija and that apparently the parent publication hadn't invested a lot of effort in making sure that the project had all elements of a serious newspaper. On the other hand, if the management of Slobodna Dalmacija claims that the newspaper failed because of financial losses, Croats in Bosnia-Hercegovina are forced to face another humiliating question in connection with possible future journalistic projects: How to obtain their own newspaper and "get it on its own feet", if Slobodna Dalmacija with its own print shop and thus significantly lowered expenses for the publication of a newspaper, failed in the same project? If even in such conditions salaries of journalists were several months in arrears and if more or less the same journalists had been cheated in several earlier projects and were unable to receive compensation for their work, we must wonder if there is any institution and power that can cause a drastic turnaround?
Almost all the Croat politicians in Bosnia-Hercegovina during the last year have in one manner or another expressed the opinion about the need for more than one daily and one weekly publication of Croats from Bosnia-Hercegovina, in addition to the publications from Croatia which are read in Bosnia-Hercegovina, but everything amounted to empty rhetoric. One after the other, weeklies Hercegovacki Tjednik, Hrvatski List and Horizont failed, and now it's the turn of the daily Slobodna BiH. The only surviving publication at the moment is the weekly from Sarajevo Hrvatska Rijec, but even that weekly is facing daunting financial problems. Perhaps the best illustration of the problems faced by this weekly is the fact that at most kiosks in Bosnia-Hercegovina Hrvatska Rijec is either not sold at all or has to be sought with a magnifying glass! Besides, Hrvatska Rijec also has financial problems and wage arrears amount to roughly 20,000 German Marks, which brings into question further publication of the weekly. If Hrvatska Rijec ceases publication, Bosnia-Hercegovina will be left without a single publication in Croatian language.
All stories and promises about local publications in such conditions are definitely less than serious and all but empty words. Therefore, the total information inferiority of Croats in comparison with the other two sovereign nations in Bosnia-Hercegovina, which have several dailies and several tens of weeklies each, is not surprising. And if one adds to the journalistic catastrophe (to which no one is officially paying any attention or seeking those who are responsible!?) problems with in practice suspended Erotel [Croat TV station based in Mostar banned by OHR] and banished signal of the Croatian TV and in the good part of Bosnia-Hercegovina also infamous (non-existent) federal TV, then failure of several earlier projects and now also of Slobodna BiH has even more tragic consequences for the Croats in Bosnia-Hercegovina.