Europe needs more media pluralism

MPM-Report-Slide

Europe needs more media pluralism. The application of the “Media Pluralism Monitor 2014”, developped by the Centre for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom (CMPF) at the Florence European University Institute, demonstrates that there are various risks for media pluralism across nine selected countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy and the United Kingdom). The results of the study are clear: “Every country has a specific weakness that creates high scores, meaning high risk”.

Here are the main results (full report here):

  1. Hungary (50% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for Hungary shows a situation of high risk for media pluralism in the country: 50% of the indicators assess a high risk.
  2. Greece (44% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for Greece shows a medium/high risk for media pluralism in the country: 44% of the indicators assess a high risk.
  3. Estonia (35% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for Estonia shows a medium risk for media pluralism in the country: 35% of the indicators assess a high risk.
  4. Bulgaria (32% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for Bulgaria shows a medium/high risk for media pluralism in the country: 32% of the indicators fall within the zone of high risk.
  5. Italy (30% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for Italy shows a medium/high risk for media pluralism in the country: 30% of the indicators show high risk.
  6. Belgium (23% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for Belgium shows a low/medium risk for media pluralism in the country: the results show a high risk concerning 23% of the indicators.
  7. Denmark (20% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for Denmark shows a low/medium risk for media pluralism in the country: 20% of the indicators fall within the zone of high risk.
  8. United Kingdom (18% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for the United Kingdom shows a low/medium risk for media pluralism in the country: 18% of the indicators assess a high risk.
  9. France (15% of the indicators show a high risk). The MPM2014 for France shows a low/medium risk for media pluralism in the country: 15% of the indicators fall within the zone of high risk.

We, at the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), think more than ever that Europe needs more media pluralism. As we stated in our European Manifesto, “a favourable environment and legislation should be created to allow independent media to flourish and the concentration of media ownership should be regulated”.

We call on the EU and the national authorities to implement the EFJ recommendations concerning Media Pluralism:

  • Media ownership and economic influence over media must be made transparent. Legislation must be enforced against media monopolies and dominant market positions among the media;
  • Media outlets should have editorial independence from media owners, for instance by agreeing with media owners on codes of conduct for editorial independence, to ensure that media owners do not interfere in daily editorial work or compromise impartial journalism;
  • State officials should not be allowed to pursue professional media activities while in office;
  • The preservation of a strong and independent PSB across member states is key to forming a pluralistic media landscape in Europe. Public service broadcasters must be protected against political interference in their daily management and their editorial work. Public authorities must support a sustainable funding model for an independent PSB that serves the public interest, avoiding closure, downsizing and restructuring measures.

Media pluralism in Europe is facing increasing threats from political influence, economic pressures and the changing media landscape. We therefore call on European and national public authorities to commit to the Journalists’ Manifesto for the revival of a free and pluralistic media in Europe.

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