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EPC welcomes the EU Council Conclusions on safeguarding a free and pluralistic media system

On 18 November, EPC together with European Magazine Media Association (EMMA), European Newspaper Publishers Association (ENPA) and News Media Europe (NME) welcomed the EU Council Conclusions on safeguarding a free and pluralistic media system, while also expressing our concerns over trust indicators and the promotion of public communication on mega platforms.

Angela Mills Wade, Executive Director of the European Publishers Council said: “What is crucial is that Governments across Europe recognised the vital role that the media plays in our European democratic system while raising serious concerns that a few large gatekeeper platforms are increasingly influencing the user’s access to media content. We welcome the call for action to ensure the right regulatory framework is put in place to compete fairly with the digital gatekeepers”.

However, the EPC cautioned against the imposition of indicators for the trustworthiness of news and media outlets as well as the promotion of fact-checkers by the EU or the Member States which could interfere with a free and independent press. As we see already today with Google’s algorithmic led brand safety filters on ad campaigns, Google has the final say on what news is good and what is bad. As a result, as described here, advertising is shown next to real journalism – that is written and edited by trained reporters – may be incorrectly blocked, preventing the campaign from achieving any reach or, in a worst-case scenario, resulting in a niche campaign being shown on long-tail sites.

Please see below for the joint press release in its entirety.

20201118 PR Council Conclusions
Download PDF • 176KB


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