Media Freedom and Pluralism

Media Freedom and Pluralism: Media Policy Challenges in the Enlarged Europe

Edited by Beata Klimkiewicz
Copyright Date: 2010
Edition: NED - New edition, 1
Pages: 363
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  • Book Info
    Media Freedom and Pluralism
    Book Description:

    Addresses a critical analysis of major media policies in the European Union and Council of Europe at the period of profound changes affecting both media environments and use, as well as the logic of media policy-making and reconfiguration of traditional regulatory models. The analytical problem-related approach seems to better reflect a media policy process as an interrelated part of European integration, formation of European citizenship, and exercise of communication rights within the European communicative space. The question of normative expectations is to be compared in this case with media policy rationales, mechanisms of implementation (transposing rules from EU to national levels), and outcomes.

    eISBN: 978-615-5211-85-0
    Subjects: Business

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Tables
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. List of Figures
    (pp. ix-x)
  5. INTRODUCTION: Harmonizing European Media Policy: Supranational Regulatory Trends and National Responses
    (pp. xi-xxvi)
    Beata Klimkiewicz

    Media policy in Europe faces a twofold challenge. on the one hand, new technologies and media services such as digital television, satellite radio, mobile content applications, video on demand, and new Internet services are fundamentally transforming media environments and media use. On the other hand, the historical enlargement integrating the countries of Eastern and Central europe within the EU’s political, economic, and legal structures implies fundamental geopolitical and cultural change, both at the European level and in the region. These new conditions in the making can be approached in one of three ways: either through a chronological description of different...


    • CHAPTER 1 Towards Democratic Regulation of European Media and Communication
      (pp. 3-26)
      Hannu Nieminen

      Since the mid-1990s the media and communication landscape in Europe has experienced profound changes. Previously, the traditional commercial logic of the print media was contrasted with other functional logics, such as the universal service principle of telephony and the public service principle of broadcasting. As a result of the digitalization and computerization of information, the situation has dramatically changed. Today, different regulatory regimes are converging. Commercial logic, promoting a neo-liberal regulatory framework, now appears to be victorious (see, e.g. Kaitatzi-Whitlock, 2005).

      At the same time the ambitious project of European integration started after World War II appears to have run...

    • CHAPTER 2 Visions of Media Pluralism and Freedom of Expression in EU information Society Policies
      (pp. 27-44)
      Miyase Christensen

      Since the “information revolution” started to take hold in the 1980s and particularly in the early 1990s, a great deal of academic research has been published on information and communication technologies, convergence, and resulting impacts (e.g. Castells 1996, 1997, 1998; Webster, 1995; Schiller, 1999; Golding, 2000; Kellner, 1999). While popular and neo-liberal discourses on the digital age have generally celebrated the potential inherent in these technologies and supported the market-friendly economic and regulatory regimes, a more skeptical approach was sustained in the political-economy tradition of communications research. The implications of market consolidation and the narrow policy aims put forth in...

    • CHAPTER 3 From Media Policy to Integrated Communications Policy: How to Apply the Paradigm Shift on a European and National Level
      (pp. 45-58)
      Halliki Harro-Loit

      A media policy paradigm has shifted from a media to a communicationoriented approach. At the same time the modern information environment requires different communicative competences from everyone. A comparison between EU communication and education policies reveals common elements, referring mostly to the individual’s ability to seek, choose, process, analyze, and evaluate the information he or she needs.

      The aim of this study is to propose a new integrated communications policy model and to discuss how this model would help the media better perform as a cultural service for society and democracy. Although the EU policy documents use different concepts and...


    • CHAPTER 4 New Media Legislation: Methods of Implementing Rules Relating to On-Demand Services
      (pp. 61-76)
      Éva Simon

      The AVMSD was adopted after a two-year debate, amending the Television without Frontiers Directive (European Parliament and the Council, 1997) in December 2007. Member states had to implement the Directive in their national regulatory regimes by the end of 2009. The AVMSD only sets up a regulatory framework; therefore each member state is obliged to formulate concrete media market regulations. To sum up the basis of the new regulatory framework: the EU created a common “minimum regulation”¹ with regard to television broadcasting services² and on-demand services.³ While stricter rules continue to apply for television broadcasting services, special on-demand service regulations⁴...

    • CHAPTER 5 A Failure in Limiting Restrictions on Freedom of Speech: The Case of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive
      (pp. 77-96)
      Péter Molnár

      This essay will first describe justifications for freedom of speech. second, it will critically analyze the reasons presented for extending the scope of the eu’s Television without Frontiers directive by the audiovisual Media services (AVMs) directive. Third, it will explore whether the general, non-media-specific rationale—the protection of “core societal values”—provided for the extension of the scope of the Television without Frontiers directive is convincing, given that freedom of speech is undoubtedly one of the core values of our european tradition, and taking the constitutional treatment of hate speech in Hungary as an example.

      Finally, this essay will conclude...

    • CHAPTER 6 Struggling with Diversity: Objectives, Outcomes, and Future of the European Quota Policy in the Context of the Television Scene in the Czech Republic
      (pp. 97-124)
      Václav Štetka

      The legislative framework for regulation of the european audiovisual sector has recently witnessed a major innovation, represented by the “modernizing” of the almost eighteen-year-old Television without Frontiers directive (89/552/EEC), last amended twelve years ago (97/36/EC). In light of the rapid technological development in the field of audiovisual production and distribution, which has reduced television to just one of many media providing audiovisual content, the European Commission decided on a considerably larger revision than in 1997. The scope of the change is evident in the replacement of the very name of this legislative instrument, which was adopted by the european Parliament...

    • CHAPTER 7 Television: The Stepmother?
      (pp. 125-156)
      Lilia Raycheva

      The virtual environment occupies a notable place in the interests of children. studies show that they spend a substantial part of their time watching TV programs, surfing on the internet, and chatting and texting on mobile phones. The products and services offered by the new information and communications technologies strongly compete with, and often challenge, family values and knowledge from school. undoubtedly, information derived from these products and services affect children’s intellect, psyche, and behavior. The virtual world is rich in positive and negative behavioristic models, which children, due to the peculiarities of their psychological development, transfer into the real...

    • CHAPTER 8 Challenges of Regulation of the Blogosphere
      (pp. 157-172)
      Andrej Školkay

      The internet in general, and the blogosphere in particular as a special branch of internet-mediated public communication, have brought new regulatory challenges to public communication and challenges to our understanding of freedom of expression. in the case of blogs, one of the most difficult decisions is how much interaction, if any, should be allowed for users. on the one hand, the ability to leave comments, rate articles or photos, and communicate with authors or other visitors encourages readers to return to the site and provides them with a sense of community. on the other hand, uncontrolled content carries a set...


    • CHAPTER 9 Audience Resistance: Reasons to Relax Content Regulation
      (pp. 175-192)
      Péter Bajomi-Lázár

      Commercial television is unpopular and popular. it is unpopular in the sense that audiences tend to despise it for its “low quality,” “sensationalism,” and “disrespect” for privacy. and it is popular in the sense that it has a high audience share. In fact, more people watch commercial television channels than their public service counterparts in nearly all European countries (Open Society Institute, 2005).

      The contradictory nature of the public’s position on commercial television is also mirrored in broadcasting regulation, which, in most of europe, allows commercial broadcasters to operate, yet seriously limits their activity. Policymakers and lawmakers tend to consider...

    • CHAPTER 10 From PSB to PSM: A New Promise for Public Service Provision in the Information Society
      (pp. 193-228)
      Karol Jakubowicz

      There is no shortage of gloom-and-doom forecasts concerning the future of public service broadcasting (PSB), or rather the possibility that it may have no future. Thomass (2007) has noted that PSB is likely to celebrate its hundredth birthday in 2020, but only if it can renew itself by that time. This does not indicate great confidence in PSB’s future.

      some of those who formulate such forecasts would indeed like to see an end to PSB. others feel that PSB should continue but are warning that, without intervention, its future may be in jeopardy. Below are two examples of this latter...

    • CHAPTER 11 Regulating Media Concentration within the Council of Europe and the European Union
      (pp. 229-244)
      Mihály Gálik

      Media products are as much cultural/political goods and services as they are economic goods and services. Given media products’ dual nature, it makes sense to differentiate between concentration in the media economic market and concentration in the political and/or cultural market (in the “marketplace of ideas”). as far as the media economic market is concerned, the issue of concentration is addressed by the general competition policy. nevertheless, the vital importance of contemporary media may justify applying sector-specific concentration rules in the media industries. indeed, this argument has been the cornerstone for media policies in democracies all over the world. efforts...

    • CHAPTER 12 Which Governance for the European Audiovisual Landscape? A Multidimensional Perspective
      (pp. 245-260)
      Gianpietro Mazzoleni and Fausto Colombo

      The increasing complexity of the contemporary media landscape, undergoing digitalization and convergence, has made it urgent to rethink the media change and to look at it beyond its simple technological dimension.² The “paradigm of the digital revolution,” employed to emphasize the transformative aspects of digital technology, has given way to the “paradigm of convergence,” more apt to represent the multidimensionality of the media change processes, the role of the subjects beside that of the technologies, the mechanisms of hybridization and remediation between old and new media.

      Briefly, we start by regarding the single medium, in a given historical period, as...

    • CHAPTER 13 The Link That Matters: Media Concentration and Diversity of Content
      (pp. 261-274)
      Zrinjka Peruško

      in today’s information societies, the media are increasingly viewed as part of the service economy. They provide jobs and revenues, and they have strong lobbies against any policy that might reduce their profits, enhanced by integration tendencies that lead to market concentration. in addition to valuing the media’s role in the new information economies, many governments still value the political and social role of the media, the success of which is based on diversity and pluralism.

      The relationship of media market concentration and media diversity and pluralism is a complex topic of contemporary european media policies, where pluralism of the...

    • CHAPTER 14 Developing the “Third Sector”: Community Media Policies in Europe
      (pp. 275-298)
      Kate Coyer and Arne Hintz

      The phenomenon of community media is not new to europe. But recognition of community media as a formal “third sector” of broadcasting is emerging on the policy radar, as pressure for states and international bodies to expand, support, and develop sectors for “citizen” access to broadcasting continues to grow. Though specific definitions of community media vary, the concept generally refers to self-organized, participatory, not-for-profit media that address local geographic communities and/or communities of interest. Community media challenge traditional conceptions of a dual media system, suggesting instead a three-tier media landscape that includes public service, commercial, and community media.

      Communicative rights,...

  9. Bibliography
    (pp. 299-330)
  10. Contributors
    (pp. 331-336)