At its meeting yesterday in Brussels, Members of the EBU Executive Board unanimously voiced their concern over the Danish Government's new public service contract with Danmarks Radio (Danish public radio and television) that will dramatically restrict the organization’s scope and range of programming and remit.
The EBU Executive Board is concerned at political attempts to drastically narrow and alter the accepted broad remit of public service media.
For the audience, such restrictions will limit diversity and access to programmes that are relevant to their lives while fostering social cohesion and understanding at a time when this is more important than ever.
Moreover, there is compelling evidence that market forces alone do not deliver consumers an offer of media services that contribute to the sense of belonging to a nation, region or continent.
The common set of values pledged by EBU Members (Universality, Independence, Excellence, Diversity, Accountability, Innovation) reflect more than a commitment to making quality and distinctive programmes. They reflect institutions that, with a proper remit and funding, can provide compelling and cohesive programming with the interests of all their publics at heart. They are also a mirror for healthy democracies where all have a right to be informed, entertained and educated with a broad range of diverse programming.
Rather than being forced back into the second row, the EBU's Executive Board believes that this is the moment for public service media to be firmly positioned in the front row and empowered to fully play their role - in the interests of audiences, performers, writers, producers, innovators and the long-term strength and democratic health of our European continent.
EBU Executive Board
Jean-Paul Philippot: President EBU, President RTBF
Monica Maggioni: Vice-President EBU, Journalist and Former President RAI
Cilla Benkö: Director General Swedish Radio
Petr Dvořák: Director General Ceská Televize
Petr Fedorov: Deputy Director General RTR
Marko Filli: Deputy Director General RTV Slovenia
Ken MacQuarrie: BBC Director Nations & Regions
Gilles Marchand: Director General SRG SSR
Tonio Portughese: Chairman of the Board Public Broadcasting Services Ltd. (Malta)
Christian Vion: Deputy Director General for Management, Production and Resources, France Télévisions
Ulrich Wilhelm: Director General Bayerischer Rundfunk, Chairman ARD
Noel Curran: Director General EBU