The one-day-conference aims at bringing together press freedom advocates and persons involved or interested in the media sphere from all over Europe. The panel “Changing political priorities in Europe and its impact on press freedom”, moderated by ECPMF’s project manager Jane Whyatt will look at the latest developments in Europe’s political sphere, for example newly elected governments and new legislation, and discuss how they influence media freedom.
A second session focusses on the technological and economical challenges of free media: “Technology Innovation: Sustaining the business side of media to finance a free and independent press sector in Europe”. The financing of independent media is problematic in many European countries, as money often contradicts independence.
Media in Poland under pressure
Wroclaw in Poland, the place where the conference will be held, has not been chosen by accident: It is one of Europe’s Capitals of Culture 2016. The day after the conference, you can take the opportunity to get to know the city with your conference fellows, as the organisers provide the participants with guided tours.
But Poland is of much relevance for the media freedom discussion also because of another, more inconvenient factor: Since the new government has been elected, media freedom is under pressure as people are afraid that public broadcasters are turned into a political propaganda organ. A new law which puts the Treasury Minister in charge of appointing the governing bodies of public service broadcasters has led to a radical change in the journalists working with the broadcasters. Following this and other developments, the European Commission has just decided to adopt the Rule of Law Opinion on the situation in the country.
Join the discussion!
Among the confirmed speakers and panelists are ECPMF’s board member Mogens Blicher Bjerregård (President of the European Federation of Journalists), MEPs Rebecca Harm and Michał Boni, Christophe Deloire (Secretary General of Reporters without Borders), Ton van Lirup (Vice-President of ECPMF’s partner Journalismfund.eu) and many other journalists and media representatives. The International Press Institute (IPI), the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and the European Journalism Centre (EJC) are also among the supporting organisations.