The Federal Government adopted the “Report on Media and Communications 2018” on 9 January 2019. In its political part, the report summarises the current challenges to a media order that is committed to freedom of the media and expression, supports fair competition and safeguards the diversity of the media. The report is based on a scientific opinion drawn up by the Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI) in 2017.
The current report focuses on three main topics:
First, how phenomena of hate speech, cyber bullying and disinformation can be countered in social networks. This requires a more effective law enforcement for criminal content, a strong, independent journalism and, last but not least, an improved media literacy. The Federal Government will continue to support existing projects, such as “Vision Kino [Vision Cinema]”, and initiate new projects, in particular to strengthen the news competence of young people. The Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media is currently developing adequate funding concepts, including for the further development of the initiative “Ein Netz für Kinder [A Net for Children].”
The second main topic concerns the access of citizens to public communication as a basis for the freedom of opinion. The basic requirement for this is a variety of media offerings. In this context, the Federal Government will create even stronger incentives with an appropriate environment of competition law. At the same time, social networks and platforms must be made more accountable.
The third focus of the report is the future of public service broadcasting and its media offerings. In view of the overwhelming amount of information provided by today's media world, public service broadcasting is increasingly being responsible not only for providing basic content but also for the mediation and orientation of information.
The entire “Report on Media and Communications of the Federal Government 2018” will soon be available for download.
Photo by Sven Przepiorka on Unsplash
[10 January 2019]