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Call on the European Union to Secure an Effective Media Freedom Act

After years of inaction, we congratulate the European Commission for introducing the European Media Freedom Act (EMFA) and now call on the European Parliament and the European Council to negotiate a final version that can meet its ambitions.

Joined by media freedom, journalists, and human rights organisations across Europe, we strongly urge the European institutions to ensure that the EMFA is not watered down by the concerns raised by publisher groups regarding certain provisions of the proposed legislation. Therefore, we insist that:

  • Transparency of media ownership is a legitimate and essential public interest.
  • Editorial independence is crucial to safeguard the integrity of news content from interference and vested interests, including those of owners.
  • The role of the proposed European Board of Media Services is focused on protecting media pluralism and editorial independence, not on regulating media content.
  • Solving the economic imbalance faced by publishers in the digital market requires digital market reforms, not unlimited consolidation of news content providers.
  • Governments misusing state advertising should be stopped and media regulators captured.

We believe these measures DO NOT pose a threat to media freedom in the EU. Therefore, with European elections on the horizon there is no excuse for complacency, nor delay. We urge European policymakers to pass a strong EMFA this year.