ACT welcomes EMFA Inter-institutional agreement

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BRUSSELS, 19 JANUARY 2024. The Association of Commercial Television and Video on Demand Services in Europe welcomes the agreement on the European Media Freedom Act endorsed by Member States today. We congratulate negotiators in the European Parliament, European Commission and Council of the European Union for coming to a hard-won outcome.

The adoption of the European Media Freedom Act is an important step in devising a new social contract between media and government in an increasingly digital environment. We hope that it will contribute towards ensuring a healthy and economically sustainable media ecosystem whilst promoting a vibrant democratic debate by combating abusive government intrusions[1].

ACT members are transparent about their ownership, structure and funding and hold themselves to the highest journalistic and governance standards. Editorial independence and integrity are ingrained in our members’ internal policies and often mandated by law. Accountability is part of our DNA and we therefore embraced the inclusion of these elements in the act from its inception.

Important elements of the agreement that ACT welcomes in particular include:

  • new safeguards to protect journalists and their sources;
  • a principle-based approach to safeguarding editorial integrity;
  • robust safeguards against national measures undermining media pluralism and independence
  • the explicit inclusion of online platforms in all relevant articles, namely merger control, audience measurement and state advertising;
  • a proportionate outcome with regard to audience measurement and state advertising;
  • the promotion of standards to enhance the availability of audiovisual media services.

Strengthening pluralism and promoting diversity is a goal all ACT members aspire to. We trust the European Media Freedom Act will be an important building block in fostering a rich and varied offer of audiovisual media services and call on institutions to formally adopt the text, as is, swiftly.

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