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Rabbitte launches debate about the future of broadcast media in Europe

Communications Minister chairs first Ministerial Discussion on Commission Green Paper, “Preparing for a Fully Converged Audiovisual World: Growth, Creation and Values”

The Minister for Communications, Pat Rabbitte T.D. chaired a debate this morning on the future of broadcast media in Europe. This debate was held in response to the Commission publication of a Green Paper on ‘Preparing for a Fully Converged Audiovisual World: Growth, Creation and Values”.

Minister Rabbitte said:

“At the heart of this complicated and multi-layered issue is the fact that media, as we know it is in the process of fundamental change. Over the last 20 years we have seen a dramatic re-shaping of the parts of the media ecosystem, to the point that there is now a sense that we are rapidly approaching a singularity in media, a point where the steady churn of a process is replaced by a period of much more fundamental and more dramatic change”.

“This debate is about the future of European media, all of it, how States regulate it, and benefit from it in terms of the preservation of culture, of language and indeed of values. And the obvious question arises as to how we might best position our national economies and the European economy as a whole, to make best advantage of it.”

This Green Paper is the first step towards a re-drafting of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive, the Directive that sets the ground rules for television broadcasting in Europe. On that basis, this process will be fundamental in designing the legislative environment for broadcast media and for new converged media over the coming years.

The purpose of this meeting was to allow Member States to discuss their initial position on the issues in question, to give their reaction to the Green Paper and to outline any other issues that are of concern or interest to them.