EMMA

Unique coalition of press and journalist organisations to address Europe’s press freedom challenges in Europe’s Cultural Capital, Wroclaw

Friday, April 22, 2016
Brussels, 22 April 2016

The European Magazine Media Association, in cooperation with an alliance of national, European and international media and journalist organisations, is organizing a conference, “(R)EVOLUTION OF EUROPE’S PRESS”, on 1 July 2016 in this year’s European Capital of Culture, Wroclaw, Poland. The event will bring together press publishers, politicians, journalists, academics, start-ups and technology experts to discuss a holistic view of real and potential threats for press freedom in Europe.

In recent years there has been a distressing decline in media freedom globally. The recent edition of the World Press Freedom Index from Reporters Without Borders released earlier this week shows that the rise of ultraconservative governments and extremist movements has contributed to the decline in Europe. Journalists in Hungary and Poland, for instance, face increasing challenges in conducting investigative journalism and protect their sources. In addition, media organisations in these countries also struggle to remain competitive in the markets they are operating in and to function independently from state control.

Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, President of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) said: “Press freedom is a fundamental right in Europe and the attempt of governments to influence media is an inevitable threat to democracy. Journalists play a crucial role in this democratic process and it’s vital that neither national nor European law hinder their professional right to practice their profession.”

The conference will open with an exclusive gala reception and dinner on 30 June 2016, which will be hosted by Rafal Dutkiewicz, the mayor of Wroclaw.

On 1 July, the event will consist of two interactive workshop sessions. The first session will look at the changing political priorities in Europe and the impact national and European policies have on press freedom. After a short networking lunch, the second session will delve more deeply into the business side of media by examining how technological innovation and disruption drives the sector and how such innovations need to be embedded into a sustainable business approach in order to remain competitive at the international level. The event will close with a panel discussion that will tie the interactive sessions together.

“The aim of this conference is to engage with key stakeholders for press freedom across Europe and foster cooperation and exchange of best practices between media, civil society organizations and governments in EU member states.” said Auke Visser, President of the European Magazine Media Association (EMMA). “This is a very important event and we are happy to be part of the alliance of media and journalist associations jointly organizing it.”

In addition to EMMA, the alliance is composed of:

This conference is being organised by a coalition of media and journalist organisations: the Czech Publishers Association, the European Journalism Center, the European Federation of Journalists, the European Newspaper Publishers' Association, Fondation EurActiv, the Hungarian Publishers Association, the Polish Publishers Association, the Slovak Publishers" Association, the Worldwide magazine media association, and the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers.

Following the event, a publication will be produced in order to help stimulate debate on this topic in a wider network. The outcomes will also be fed into existing formats hosted by participating organisations, such as the Future Media Lab.’s “Future Media Lounge” sessions in the European Parliament in September 2016.

Details about the event can be found here.


For further information contact:

Karin Fleming
Communications Manager, EMMA

karin.fleming@magazinemedia.eu

+32 2 536 06 07

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