"It is essential to guarantee freedom of expression and we must be accountable for the way we use it."
Those were the words used by EBU President Jean-Paul Philippot as he closed his speech before the European Commission's first Annual Colloquium on Fundamental Rights held at the Palais d'Egmont in Brussels on 1 - 2 October 2015.
The event was the initiative of EC Vice-President Frans Timmermans and Commissioner Vera Jourová. Almost 100 people from all over the European Union attended the colloquium, entitled 'Tolerance and Respect: preventing and combating antisemitic and anti-Muslim hatred in Europe'.
The EBU President reminded delegates that in 2012 public service media organizations adopted a charter of shared values, placing independence, responsibility and diversity at the heart of their organisations. One of the ways in which these values were implemented was through peer reviews whose results were published on the websites of the corporations audited.
"Independence is essential to ensure freedom of expression and to enable the media to fully play their role in combating stereotypes," stated President Philippot, who stressed the public service media commitment to 'media literacy' and diversity not only in their programmes but also in the staff they recruit.