European Alternatives relaunches its flagship campaign “European initiative for media pluralism“. We have until August 2014 to collectd one million online and offline signatures throughout Europe to pass legislation defending the freedom and pluralism of the media across the continent.
The situation of media freedom and pluralism in the European Union is worsening. Fast. Hungary’s media is being increasibly subjected to the illiberal policies of Viktor Orban. Excessive concentration and influence of economic groups such as Murdoch’s distort the British media landscape. Italy, Bulgaria, and Romania experience a dangerous overlap of economical, media, and political interests in the hands of the same persons.
But without free, independent, and pluralistic media citizens are deprived of the possibility to keep power accountable. Corruption and maladimistration prosper, personal business and political interest replace the common good of all, minorities face increasing marginalisation. The deterioration of media pluralism and media freedom in Europe is above all a threat to democracy.
European institutions have, so far, refrained from taking a strong stance in defence of media freedom and pluralism across the continent.
This is why we have relaunched the European Initiative for Media Pluralism, together with nearly one hundred organisations, media, and professional bodies from throughout the continent. We are running a European Citizens Initiative, a new tool of participatory democracy allowing at least one million citizens in at least 7 EU states to present directly to the European Commission a legislative proposal.
We demand of the European Commission to draft a Directive on media pluralism containing:
a) effective legislation to avoid concretration of ownership in the media and advertisement sectors;
b) guaranteed independence of supervisory bodies from political power;
c) definition of conflict of interests to avoid media moguls occupying high political office;
d) monitoring systems to regularly check the health and independence of the media in member states.
Over the coming months we aim to mobilise citizens from throughout Europe to stand up and demand that the European institutions show their commitment to fundamental rights and civil liberties, even when member states increasingly fail to do so.
For this we need to reach the crucial figure of one million signatures, a number which will allow to open a legislative process at EU level.
If you or your organisation want to give a hand we are looking for help in all the 28 European member states! Please write an email to Alessandro Valera, campaign coordinator, on firstname.lastname@example.org
To start, you can easily sign the initiative online. Join us and stand up for your rights!