European mediascape – How to (re)create a trusted public sphere? – FS 04 2021

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30 June 2021 | 14:45-17:30 CEST | Studio Bruges | Video recording | Transcript
Consolidated programme 2021 overview / Day 2

Proposals: #6 #23 #52 #66 #67 #77 #96

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Session teaser

After a decade of turbulence in the media field caused by the rise of global platforms, the arbitrary decision to ban President Trump from Twitter and Facebook came as a telling example of the power of platforms, and served as a wake-up call for the rest of the world. In Europe, remedial policy to curb the excessive power of tech giants has gained new urgency, as has the search for alternative means of restoring a trusted public sphere. These efforts are reviewed and evaluated at Focus Session 4, with input from media- and content-related workshops held earlier during the 2021 EuroDIG. FS 4 will also examine media initiatives to counter disinformation and to (re)create a trusted public sphere in Europe. These initiatives address common standards and journalism ethics, cooperation among European public service media and reinvigorating grassroots media, among others.

Session description

Input session – 45 min

Moderator: Liz Corbin, Deputy Media Director, Head of News, EBU (confirmed)

The moderator will lead through the discussions of the input and the output sessions

Confirmed speakers:

  • Petra Kammerevert, Member of the European Parliament (confirmed): She will give her view on a European Public Sphere to be reflected in a Report of the European Parliament
  • Matthias Pfeffer, TV journalists and producer, co-author of ‘The Human Imperative, Power, Freedom and Democracy in the Age of AI’ (confirmed)
  • Olle Zachrison, Head of Digital News Strategy, Swedish Radio(confirmed): He will present a concrete project, an online news project, the EBU's 'A European Perspective'.
  • Giovanni De Gregorio, Postdoctoral researcher, Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy, Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, University of Oxford (confirmed)
  • Viktorya Muradyan, European Youth Press (confirmed): She will tell us what young people expect from a European Public Sphere.

Breakout session – 45 min

We will break out in three different sessions:

  • Breakout session 1: Can EU regulation support the European public sphere? Reports back from WS 1: Digital services regulation – opportunities and challenges - Vittorio Bertola and WS 6 Copyright – Implementation of the EU directive - Gregory Engels
  • Breakout session 2: The European mediascape an trusted content. Reports back from WS 9: Content moderation on the Internet infrastructure level – Where does censorship begin? - Sebastian Schwemer and WS 10: Fake News – Dissolving Superstitions with Media Literacy - Maia Simonishvili
  • Breakout session 3: Can self- and co-regulation contribute to the public sphere? Report back from WS 12: Best practices of self- and co-regulation of platforms towards a legal framework – Giacomo Mazzone


Until .

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  • Nicola Frank, EBU

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Subject Matter Expert (SME)

  • Yrjö Länsipuro

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  • Giovanni De Gregorio
  • Vlad Ivanets
  • Aleksandra Ivanković, Internet Society & YCIG
  • Giacomo Mazzone, Eurovisioni
  • Juuso Järviniemi, Student at College of Europe, Federal Committee member of the Young European Federalists (JEF-Europe)
  • Nicola Frank, EBU

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  • Support was expressed for innovative efforts to create trusted European media space, by all relevant actors, from EP to media organizations as the EBU
  • DSA, DMA are the first step to deal with the existing dominance of platforms. But all regulation (incl. copyright-related) should avoid causing unintended consequences and respect human rights and fundamental values
  • One institution alone cannot solve the problem. Multistakeholder approach is needed to build a harmonious system where elements of hard and soft regulation are in balance, within their respective boundaries, mandates and accountability mechanism. Platforms, in particular, have a big stake in the functioning of the system, and should be required to develop transparent self/co-regulation.
  • In the last line of defense are individual users, each of them perceiving content within their own context. Those defenses should be strengthened by media education.

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>> NADIA TJAHJA: It is 2:45 welcome back. I’m Nadia Thahja, your studio host live from Bruges. We’re excited to start European mediascape – How to (re)create a trusted public sphere? – FS 04 2021 moderated by Liz Corbin.

Before we start, I would like to ask my cohost to introduce himself and the EuroDIG session rules.

Good afternoon. At EuroDIG we believe in open dialogue and that’s why we would like to you follow a certain session rules, you can see them on the screen. Here is the main principles. Firstly, if your display name is not the full name yet on Zoom, we ask you to rename yourself now so that we can see who is on the call.

Secondly, there will be a chance later on during this session to ask questions and we ask you to raise your hand using the raise hand button on Zoom so that we can give you the floor.

Finally, you will be able to use the chat. The chat is not broadcast on YouTube but it will be used for communicating with other participants on the call. However, the video itself, it is live streamed on YouTube.

With that, I give the floor to the moderator of this session, we’ll be here in the background to make sure we have a good spirit and inclusive discussion. I wish you a nice session.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you very much, everybody. Good afternoon, everybody. I’m Liz Corbin, I’m the deputy media director and head of news at the European Broadcasting Union. If you don’t know who the EBU are, we represent more than 100 public service publishers across Europe and beyond and through news activities we work with many more media partners around the world. Thank you for being with us to discuss this fascinating issue of the European mediascape.

We are here to learn from each other today as we talk about how to create or recreate a trusted public sphere. This term public sphere has become part of E.U. language over the past few years and so I think it is interesting to see if we can agree on what it actually means or could mean in the future.

We have had a turbulent decade in the media industry. Massive disruption by the technology we use to gather and report the news, massive disruption caused by the arrival of the global technology platforms, Google, Facebook, the rest. Increasing disruption by the politics that they have helped generate, a public increasingly divided and polarized and in which in turn has had a direct impact on our societies, on our families, on ourselves.

In Europe, the search for policies to curb the excessive power of the tech giants after the facts that gained new urgency, as has the search for ways to restore or create a place where citizens can find trustworthy information in a safe, online environment. We have a fabulous group of guests to give us their insights on this this afternoon.

Petra Kammerevert, a member of the European Parliament, she is currently preparing her report called towards a European Digital Public Sphere. She’s well placed to give her views and opinions on what this is so far.

Matthias Pfeffer, a TV journalist and producer and coauthor of the Human Imperative, Power, Freedom and Democracy in the Age of AI.

Olle Zachrison, head of Digital News Strategy, Swedish Radio, also a colleague of mine working on an extremely exciting new online news project for the EBU called a European Perspective.

Giovanni De Gregorio, is a post-doctorial researcher specializing in Media Law and Policy at the University of Oxford.

Viktorya Muradyan, an executive board member with the European News Press and a post-graduate in international relations and diplomacy. I hope she’ll keep us in check on what the next generation of journalists and audiences will expect from this concept of the European public sphere.

I would like to introduce you to our reporter for this session who will be listening to everything you have to say very carefully and will be making a summary of it at the end. We will hear from him in the output session later this afternoon.

This, of course, it is a discussion, so our guests will kick off the conversation, make sure you’re part of it. Get comments and questions in the chat, make yourself known by raising your virtual hand if you would like to speak.

Let’s get started. Let’s hear from Petra Kammerevert. Please take the floor.

>> PETRA KAMMEREVERT: Thank you very much.

Dear director, Mrs. Liz Corbin, guests, thank you for allowing me to speak here today as an introduction to the European digital public sphere. As was mentioned, I’m currently preparing an initiative report on this in the European Parliament. In preparing that speech and the initiative report one thing is particularly clear, when you get excited about this idea of the European digital public sphere you can hardly let go of it on the other hand, the majority can still imagine very little about it. It is something between a collection of links and a reinvention of the Internet. We have to be aware from this point on, we have to start to convince and this will mean hard work.

We who are gathered here today no longer have to convince each other that it is imperative to create a space for European citizens in the digital world in which public issues can be discussed publicly, secure information basis beyond fake news and hate speech and consultive as possible. At this point, let me add that I consider the promotion of consulting journalism in connection with the digital public sphere to be very important.

Not only must be aware that we’re discussing completely new territory for many, but moreover, this is currently a debate still limited to a few countries and a few people. It is pre nice parliament as a very German debate. French people think of ADA based on German/French cooperation. It is precisely now that we must succeed in turning this into a truly European project. This is where the initiative report is supposed to help.

Ideally, I would like to describe in a broad stroke but as clearly as possible, as precisely, as briefly as possible why we need such a sphere, how it should be structured in terms of principle, what procedure principles it should follow and how one could get started.

I make no secret of the fact that I hold the discussion about the European digital sphere in such high regards that if it is created together in the best possible way it can open up important ways of shaping the digital future of the European Union.

Already now it is absurd that we Europeans are constantly complaining about abuse at Amazon, Google, Facebook and so on and then wanting after the development to try to somehow regulate which is unacceptable from our point of view. We are only adequately successful in this and then continuing our search on Google, shopping on amazon, watching funny films on Tik Tok, so on, without limitation because of the lack of serious European alternatives.

In the collective awareness, it seems to be lost that there are other things besides the shallow and auto that are dealing with, we have to be careful not degenerate into employees of Internet service and belief that this would be meaningful activity.

Comparatively, very small, above average educated which an Internet survey leaves finds quality content on the net, but tends to keep to itself. It is not as if the content isn’t there, but we also have to be aware that if high-quality content is to reach larger audience, it may have to become a bit more popular demanding of its workers, but not overwhelming and still should remain high-end and journalistic and artistic standards.

In addition, there are no serious joint European systematically keeping the data of Europeans which they generate in large quantities through their respective Internet visits in the E.U. for as long as possible and exploiting it by European companies on the basic of the framework of Europe. On one hand we emphasize that data is a new gold and on the other hand, we give it away to all parts of the world, in general less – data protection rules apply outside of Europe.

The European public sphere shall help. Technologically, I think it is most realistic to work on something like a hub, portal, a corrugated way. We should not try to construct a super platform according to the model bigger, faster, further. Whether we need to lay a foundation that allows an ecosystem for the collaborative efforts of many. At the same time, each content creator should remain responsible for its content and end-to-end and a strict separation from structure and content should be maintained without exception.

However, the unified element of a graphic presentation of the contents and the systematic integration and super automated concept must be distinguished from this. In any case, some basic rules are needed according to which content and such a sphere can be in principle found by the user and a team that implements content and new partners according to these basic rules in daily work.

Briefly, once the sphere will serve all Europeans at the same time, not belonging to anyone, we also need to establish a clear structure that’s an – that’s as independent as possible.

Within the structure, an independent body is needed to monitor compliance with the above principle and if necessary to develop them further.

Independence in my opinion is in this context characterized by the exclusion of state executives so that neither the member of the national government nor the commission can participate here. Nevertheless, to a limited extent, members of the parliament are allowed to participate.

If something big is to grow out of the European digital public sphere, there must be a moment when this is not seen as a project of others but for the European people to be united in diversity. In one hand, the resources required for this is an object of general public intuit, we have a word in German that’s not translated into other languages unfortunately.

On the other hand, possible synergies that are thinkable in many ways, in such a sphere, should be achieved as consistently as possible through co-use, codevelopment, coinvestment. The system, the data analyst, all of the technology needed to implement the forces not to be established by each individual but could be developed and used jointly.

The idea is that it cannot be profit driven, this includes with everything that’s applied. First and foremost, it must have values. This does not leave us with the idea that everything has to be refinanced in a way it cannot permanently depend on public finding. That’s another question that certainly needs to be discussed further. Soon we’ll have a maximization of profits and we’ll only start copying what we already find in the Internet. This sphere would not be needed for that.

Finally, I’m convinced that quality media is currently in the best position to make a starting point, providing content that is translated into other languages, they can already inspire more Europeans. Above all possibilities for cocreation, allow a public discourse to grow along the content. It would also be important at an early stage to intentionally involve not only public service media providers, but also private media providers or publishing houses.

Now I hope I was able to inspire you with this first thoughts and I was able to keep the balance between reality and vision. I don’t have the answers to all the questions yet either. In any case, I would be pleased to have many partners whom I would like to involve in the creation of this initiative.

On the 27th of September I will present the draft report, and as part of the presentation experts will be heard with suggestions and ideas on the same day. The further plan is to be able to submit Amendments by the fourth of October and to vote on the Committee on the 1st of December. It could be that the deadline for Amendments will also be extended because of the new topic, but this would then postpone also the vote for one month.

Now I wish you all a stimulating further discussion and look forward to your ideas, suggestions for this project and thank you very much for your attention.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you very much, Petra Kammerevert. It was interesting and passionate supporter of the public sphere and what’s to come. It certainly is a great introduction to the discussion.

Should we go next to Matthias Pfeffer. The floor is yours.

>> MATTHIAS PFEFFER: Thank you very much first of all for having me in this wonderful, very important plenary.

I’m here from Greece connected from Greece, from the other side, from the heart of Europe actually, the birthplace of it, and I hope the connection will be stable during the whole time. I am in the hotel lobby to get a good, stable connection. Excuse me if there is some issues.

Thank you very much for this very good, brilliant keynote, Petra. I just could say that everything that you said is absolutely true. I wanted to make for the same idea three points which are in a short version what I think is necessary to do.

First point is, we have to see that democracy is threatened by technology. One of the biggest threats to democracy is the transformation of the public sphere and the disruption. The technical model of this economy leads to problems like hate speech, dis information and therefore fragmentation of the public is caused. The disruptive public sphere leads to a divided society, which is vulnerable to alternatives and nationalism, an open regulated, protected public sphere where all citizens have free access to verified information and the freedom of speech is necessary and essential for democracy.

Second point, the combined financial economic and technological power of big tech has reached historically unprecedented concentration of power that needs a democratic reaction. Technical, economic power today is not only a market phenomenon but it inspires to power our democracy. A few big tech companies disrupted with other sectors of the economy that threaten to take over the fourth power of the state and privately financed journalism. For the Internet, it is no such substitute for the contribution of investigative, reflective, critical channels to the control of public power over in free societies. It is necessary but not enough to proceed in a consequent process of political regulation. Not enough, we have to go from the limitation of power to the shaping of the public sphere in the digital age according to the democratic rules. Europe has to go ahead with this because the united Europe has another problem, due to language barriers there is no way to build the common European public sphere, but today digital technology can deliver the powerful translation tools, the precondition to overcome many barriers.

(Background conversations making it difficult to hear).

it must be ran independently and at arm length from states and European institutions as well as profit interests. It can only work as an independent NGO or foundation, not controlled by any of their interests by traditionally and today want their hand on media and the press.

It should bring the best TV information and documentary programs from public broadcasters, independent cultural institutions and private quality media from all Member States to all European citizens, enabling them to learn more about the European cocitizens by seeing things from their perspectives.

Outstanding European digital developments and companies would build the infrastructure and program and search and information algorithm according to European values such as democracy and plurality and also fundamental rights such as GDPR.

The new European platform must be the direct opposite of YouTube, allowing learning from each other across borders instead of helping the private platform to learn everything about the citizens in order to sell their data, sell their processes and manipulate the information that they have access to. Focus on quality journalist products instead of propagating fake news, propaganda, advertising urban trash, and the real multicultural aspects.

It is necessary to create a citizens – bring citizens of Europe together in the 21st Century to enable a direct exchange with each other. Let us use the best technology to enable everybody to start and take part in a new European discourse, let’s build a common ground. Let’s build a European common foundation that will fuel everyone’s common sense of a Europe of democracy, a platform that’s dedicated to enlightenment and critical inquiry, free speech and democratic engagement, plurality and the multiEuropean perspectives rather than looking at the stock exchange thus connected and being played out entirely in the interests of profits.

Thank you very much.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you very much. I hope you’re having a lovely time in Greece. I love the backdrop! Interesting about the language barriers, that’s a perfect link from Olle Zachrison from Swedish radio working with us on a new project with the EBU which is doing precisely that. I won’t spoil your presentation. Please take the floor. I know you have some slides to show as well.

>> OLLE ZACHRISON: Good afternoon, everybody. I am – I hope that you can see it also in full presentation mode.

Now we’re going to go from those high ideological, very, very important principles about democracy to a very practical manifestation. I’m Olle Zachrison from Swedish radio and here to give you a brief look on a very exciting news project that involves public broadcasters from all over Europe. Public media employs 40,000 journalists across Europe. It is one of the strongest news alliances in the world but to gain leverage in the digital space we have to form a much tighter collaboration within our union, EBU, and this is exactly what we’re doing at the moment and I’m going to try to explain to you.

Today is the perfect day to talk about this actually because from tomorrow, ten public service companies from Spain to Finland will start publishing a recommendation with digital news from other parts of Europe and in front of us, we see a sneak preview of this box, it actually went live today on RTP website in Portugal and in Swiss, if you go to the front pages, you can scroll down, see the box live from today.

We call this box a European perspective because that is the fundamental idea to serve great, impactful stories from other European countries, stories that can add new perspective, view, creating a stronger understanding of our common European sphere.

It is also a way of manifesting this public service alliance that I was talking about that stands for trusted news and diverse news.

This has been a very intense project over the past year and it is amazing that we are ready to launch now without a single physical meeting.

On the contrary, we have been helped withholding digital meetings. The project is complicated from an editorial, legal, technical point of view. On the editorial side, it has to ask questions like what stories from our country are most interesting for wider European audience? Do we have to translate all stories to our own language? Who is legally responsible for the content? There is a big diversity between news conscience in the different countries, so there is no one-size-fits-all solutions. The technical infrastructure that we have built has to guarantee both flexibility and make sure that every news maintains absolute editorial control. We’re very happy that the technical development here has received E.U. support which has been absolutely crucial for achieving this in less than a year.

How does it work in a practical sense then? Editors on all digital desks across Europe hand pick interesting stories in a purpose-built monitoring tool. They choose wherein their online services to integrate the box, like on this article page or directly on the front page as you saw in the RTP example. The stories can be displayed in original language, in English, in translated form.

This is a video dummy of how it will work from the user’s perspective. Let’s say you’re on the French TV website, you click on this recommendation, in this case, news items about Biden/Putin Summit, and you stay in the context of the France television website. If the article contains media like in this case, like a video, it will also be displayed in this kind of pop-up mode with subtitles or translated voice over. You will have it in the language that you can understand.

The internal tool, the basic infrastructure for this that allows us to discover and search stories from newsrooms across Europe was launched in February. More than 1500 news stories are added here every day, which is fascinating to follow. It is a great tool in itself when reporting on breaking news from other countries or doing research on specific topics. All stories here are AI translated so we can understand what’s going on without mastering that language, but we also always stress that translations have to be checked and corrected if they are faced directly to the audience, of course.

To this monitoring tool, 18 members are now contributing stories to the tool from EBU. As I said, 10 companies will from tomorrow start phasing these stories of European perspectives to – directly to the audience.

Of course, we see this as just the beginning of sharing European news in a different way, something that will grow and be refined from both an editorial and technical sense. The EBU has members in 56 countries, so there is plenty of room to expand, to grow, to really kind of grow this virtual trans-European newsroom that we are forming.

That was all from me. Of course, if you have any questions about this, any comments, you are most welcome to contact Liz Corbin with them or contract knee directly or someone federals the European perspective team, from the pilot team.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you. People can ask questions now if they would like to in the chat or by putting up hands.

I just let everybody in a secret that when we were in our normal editorial meeting at 9:30 this morning, when Justina, she came on the meeting saying RTP have gone live! It was just the most exciting moment! This is really a very exciting, different and truly innovative project.

Thank you for your hard work on this in particular.

I would like to move now to Giovanni De Gregorio, now with the University of Oxford and is a super expert in the area of regulation and media law and policy. Please give us your perspective.

>> GIOVANNI DE GREGORIO: Thank you for this kind introduction. I’m pleased to be here with you and discussing this kind of challenging topic. It is kind of a goal to try to rebuild a trans media landscape.

First of all what we should ask ourselves, it is why we lost in a way the trust media landscape, especially the digital age. Actually to find this answer, we can see how also the European policy in the last 20 years has changed. It was the idea of a liberal approach especially considering digital media, we’re going to a different approach and we have looked at freedom of expression, other rights.

In the case of one of the issues, the very urgent issue that has concern also the disinformation. It is a big challenge to build a kind of trusted media landscape. The most important point, it is when we look at the European policy on disinformation, we see how the union, at least the first years following the self-regulatory approach which we know well, but the question is why instead of other areas of the world, the union has introduced this type of regulation rather than going to other forms of regulation, like designing what is – defining what is disinformation or not, on the way they’re taking other approaches. Now we have the time to discuss that but what is important, it is I would like to refer to a study that we conducted in the framework of the global digital Human Rights network and this is a study conducted that started talking about the problem of information, how disinformation and the info – it is a recent approach to this information in European countries and some like South Africa, Israel, outside of Europe, and in Argentina. And this study, it is interesting. It shows a kind of picture of what’s happening with digital policy in Member States, not just the European level and what – how Member States are struggling to create this media landscape at the national level and also to fight the spread of disinformation during the pandemic.

The study has covered almost 20 countries as already mentioned and has involved almost 40 researchers.

Actually the public, as you can imagine, it was, of course, concerned, the idea, of course, of the disinformation and how this information, what is important, it is the focus of online disinformation, it is important in terms of the scope of disinformation and of the study. Of course, the first point, it is that, of course, the information is driven by social media, the researchers have shared this even if there are different uses of social media by Member States, what is important, the social media is not the only main actor. Social networks, they’re not the only actors in the field. One of the most important concerns that researchers raised, it is that it is not just public space, quasi-public spaces like social media but also instant messaging applications or rather the digital spaces when it is possible to exchange and trying to undermine the trusted media environment we want to create. There are private areas that are also protected by secrecy of communication, but to have an escape from regulation, check, of course, even from fact checkers, for example, and so, of course, I mentioned another important piece of the puzzle that research has shown, in fact it is a clear role in collaborating with social media, it is an important tool to stress in this point. of course governments are involved very well as we know, this has been rebuilt by the studies and still there are concerns on how government relies on social media also to spread political ideas, and using the disinformation as a problem, as a political tool and raising issues concerning, of course, digital issues, we know, of course, that this is undermined in the media landscape we’re addressing now and there are rules of courts. Courts, in a more complicated way, they have reacted in a way to the spread of disinformation, not in all countries, because, of course, sometimes is no regulation for the disinformation and the rule of law, of course, it has not actually found a legal instrument to enforce this disinformation because there is not really a definition, but still in some countries, like, for example, in Bosnia, outside of Europe, we have seen courts sometimes extending for example the boundaries of free speech or hate speech to cover and include disinformation within the framework, especially times of the pandemic.

This is generally a call because actually the study shows how Europe is an exception if we look at the broader picture of the media landscape and international level because still the approach, it is much focused on self-regulation and looking at just intersection users, that there is between hate speech and disinformation, when is the information becoming – this information, this misinformation, something that will provoke or undermine the dignity for someone else.

The idea, it is that, of course, the recommendation, it is around increasing transparency, accountability, especially with the social media platforms. This is the condition of the research n actually allows us to move towards the work European Union is doing and what they’re doing, it is actually mainly consisting in also looking at the role of the DSA that would be increasingly important in pushing very large platforms to be responsible and accountable and transparent in the process of moderation exactly where we need to build what this means in the digital age. The big challenge, at least in – not just of course in my opinion, but it is that in order to build a trusted landscape, we have to rethink this, this does not mean actually overdo what we have learned in the last years, decades about media pluralism but thinking about how do you look at this in the field and this is possible with the DSA. It is one step – not the solution of course – but one step that actually allows us to go towards a new framework with accountability, providing different and multilayer approach depending on the size of the social media or the online platform we’re addressing of course the DSA could be seen as a piece to rebuild this media landscape, but still the big question and I would like to finish with that, the big question, it is really to rethink how we can ensure a greater transparency, social media transparency, of course, in this. That is where the rules of the game are made and shaped, at the outside of the logic of democracy but inside corporate bathrooms.

This is just my ideas of course. We are open for questions. Thank you.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you.

That’s very thought provoking and you’re right, the algorithms, they’re clearly an important part.

Victoria, it is good to see you. Thank you for joining us.

On the Executive Board of the European Youth Press, how do you see the public sphere, what should – what is it or what should it be from your perspective?

>> VIKTORYA MURADYAN: Hello, everyone. Thank you for the invitation. Thank you to my panelists for expressing opinions. It was very interesting.

I would like to start with the definition of what is European public sphere, we cannot talk about something or try to find solution it is we don’t define the concept itself. The public sphere is the link between politicians and citizens which has to be facilitated and strengthened by the media. Others went further, looked at the thought of whether European public sphere is a precondition for the European Union’s existence and looking at the past decade we can definitely say no, it is not a precondition, the union managed to exist without having a strongly formed public sphere.

However, from now on, with nationalism, it is more and more difficult with time to have a viable agreement without any term.

It is not my term. I don’t know who coined it, it is very much on point.

At this time, we say that the entire project itself, it is under threat, not only from the national forces in the E.U. Member States but also even skeptics in Brussels, without the media sphere, there cannot be an identity and the public sphere is in the early stage of its life, it doesn’t hold sufficient power to counter the growing nationalism and respond to the challenges and reinforcing the European public sphere, it should not mean – it does not mean providing more coverage of Brussels, but providing coverage of how things are happening in Brussels shaping the lives of people who live outside of Brussels, only this way, can we reinforce the identity of the citizens and the feeling of belonging to the bigger European community.

What is wrong with now with European public sphere? The problem I would say is twofold, there are gaps in the political decision making and there are gaps in the media business models and the media decision making too. On one hand, the fact that the realization that the public sphere is essential to enter the political agenda quite late, it is more actively discussed and debated in conferences and forums only during the last few years. Even though media organizations, Civil Society, independent outlets have tried to kick off some projects to collaborate on close culture communication and the journalism the political backout was lagging behind.

Even for example we look at the public opinion, the national public opinion in different Member States, we say it is somehow like Europe. Those involve ready mostly the elites, there are – they are influential. On the other hand, in terms of the media decision making, media business models, there is a scarcity of resources, everywhere they cut stuff, they prefer to work with freelancers than to have in-house writers, the media organizations have to learn how to prioritize, how to choose a topic to reach the most I would say income and profit because still it is a business model.

We have – everybody was busy covering hundreds of meetings and outcomes taking place daily in Brussels, we have the anti-European discourse, this has become trans-European Union.

What do young people expect? As executive board member of the European youth press I would say we have an interesting set of what kind of expectations young people have from the future of the European public sphere. First of all, we do expect more innovation in the media sector to reach across borders. We think that data journalism, artificial intelligence, it makes journalism and media better, more interesting, make it evidence-based in larger, in scale of impact.

Young people also expect to see more public and private partnerships in the media sector and in the European public sphere too. We have 7216 during the paper disclosure of how the private and public partnership produces outstanding journalism touching not only a single country but the whole continent and the world.

That is why we need to invest and prioritize public private partnerships creating an environment with a more significant outcome for the whole European public, not only for single countries.

Young people expect to see more citizen-focused news and less institutionalized news.

The coverage of Europe has to be more related to concrete issue, policy area, closer to the reality of citizens. It might seem unimportant what’s happening in a little village somewhere in Croatia, Spain, Italy, it is important to show that Brussels, people in journalism are in touch with their lives and understand the problems, that’s where the emphasis should be put.

Young people also want to be heard and understood and not be labeled as to an experience or to have a valid opinion. We know that young people have often and still are stigmatized by lack of experience so their opinions should be considered more seriously by the decision makers and the authors and writer, they should be able to participate in this kind of public discussions more often.

One more thing for young people, it is to have more European integration, European public sphere, discussion or narratives in the media, however, not just Brussels, there are currently thousands of journalists, permanently stationed in Brussels and some of them are in the Brussel corps. They report to hundreds of news outlets and radio and tv channels in different parts of the Europe and they are very big important components of the whole European mediascape, connecting Brussel reality to the people in the countries of origin. As everyone states with the time, they’re becoming very much for Brussels, not for integration, this angers young people and in general all of the audiences back home.

A few more interesting things that we expect more is one thing is to focus on bringing stories from all over the union rather than just covering the European council meetings or parliament hearings.

Also stopping with the blame it on Brussel syndrome, it is increasingly popular in media.

Another important thing which is discussed a lot among the communication specialists, that we have to avoid more difficult language and jargon in general, the words like codecisions, stakeholders, which are so commonly used in E.U. related reporting but theistic very little to the ordinary people. European reporting in general has to be maximally jargoned and acronym free to be relatable to our citizens lives and not only to the elite.

We also expect more support for independent media outlets, supporting this were sip in journalism and media production. Right now only a few handful of media outlets qualify as European, this is not a longstanding more common phenomena.

The sphere is emerging from start-ups, network, collaborative projects, not from traditional media. We see traditional media struggles to catch up with the fast-pace of the changes and transformations in the European public sphere.

Everything is going to be impossible without funds. We have seen that just recently the E.U. has invested over 6 million euros into the pilot project on the European public sphere and the new online media offers for young Europeans. There are two consortiums where they support and distribute innovative thought provoking content and coverage and they’re fully in editorial independence. It is a good start but little investment in what we consider to be the essence of the European Union identity.

We hope to see more funds and additional support coming.

Probably the last thing I would say, it is the need to have more journalistic education and the change of strategy in the aftermath of COVID. There needs to be a new – the face-to-face newsroom environment changed, young people were used to going to the newsrooms and receiving mentorships from senior peers and they’re stuck at home with Zoom calls and only brief moments of interactions with superior, it does not fully replace. Technology is amazing but does not replace the live communication between young people and the senior peer in the newsroom.

It is that this environment, the context transformed. Education, it is still behind, it is not able to provide and respond to the challenges.

Policy solutions also needs to be across state, supporting cross state collaboration and discussion. We need to help public broadcasters to have the licenses easily and operate in multiple states to avoid maximum – to reduce the maximum red tape and bureaucracy.

Diversity, diversity, diversity, in the newsroom brings it to the editorial lines.

It is long. I’m sorry. I probably went over my time. To conclude, I would say that the European public sphere should not intend to replace national public spheres. As we’re only starting to work on it fast and efficiently we have to set clear rules on how the European public sphere should interact with national ones, otherwise we’re going to have the same toxic narrative of the transfer of media sovereignty to Brussels which we definitely want to avoid.

These are my comments. I would be happy to answer to any other questions. Thank you very much.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you. Thank you very much. It was a very long list of demands and all of which made absolute sense.

Thank you very much! It is great to have that challenge.

We are running a bit over time.

We were going to take a little brick at half past 3:00, 5 minutes ago. There are some questions and it would be nice to have the option to hear from people.

>> Giacomo Mazzone: I appreciate very much all the speeches I want to come back to what’s being raised about the public sphere weekend the European space, it is not new that this is new. I was part of the euro news regional team in ’92, so this is something that’s been tried but failed for a simple reason, but never has been accepted, the principle that we can have public service, European public service, in the only national public service and the crisis for euro news is all around 25 years, that they were trying to finance it as commercial channel when its scope was exactly to create a public officer that’s not commercially viable.

Are we ready now? After 25 years of mistake to do the next step and to do into truly one, not in addition of national public service?

>> LIZ CORBIN: I’m going to ask Matthias Pfeffer to answer that question. You had very grand ideas in your intervention. Do you think it is really possible?

>> MATTHIAS PFEFFER: Yes, I hope so! I think we can all can only hope that this will be – for everyone, it is obvious that we have the different situation. It is very good that all of this work has been done and that a lot of experience has been there that we can use today.

We didn’t have such dramatic development like we have it in the last years. Looking at the Brexit, at the Trump election and at the 6 of January in the U.S. and I think this is really now a very new situation because the power of the digital sphere, unregulated public sphere, it has risen so much, we need to give an answer as I said, and I think that there will be – I mean, this also shows that there will be more and more voices and there will be – it will be necessary.

The other thing, I think we have to do it really in that way, like I landed out, I mean, we need a very strong political support from the European Parliament, it is not possible to do it without it. Because it is about media, journalism, it needs to be far away from the state and also from Brussels, as the last speaker said. It should be independent, should be a foundation, it should be a very multiperspective and with a lot of participation of all of the Member States.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you. That’s great.

We had another question asking – Giovanni De Gregorio, I will ask you to take this one – to whom are the global digital platforms responsible on international level, if anyone of course? How can they be made accountable for – by violating freedoms of expression, other values that we hold and are important.

>> GIOVANNI DE GREGORIO: I could answer this question with another question. I think about what happened recently in the pressure that Facebook has had in promoting – even if not promoting, no one says that, but still, who actually make it is more accountable? Of course, the social, political pressure is set to review policy, this is playing an important role in terms of accountability of actors at the international level. Still, when you look at the big picture, we have different approaches on a global scale. Indeed we can see how the U.S. is following a broader approach to that. Of course, it is not regulating actors, even probably with new administrations things will change on the Western side of the Atlantic.

On the eastern side, we’re still kind of an approach that tried to regulate platform and export other values in the case of China regulating the market and thinking about cases that are more like Tik Tok, other cases, but still we have also the European models that are in the intersection which is rising in the international media landscape, actually at the intersection as a global regulator and this is about the famous stories we know well. You know. The idea of accountability, it comes from the extension of the European model in the international level that is embracing the threshold for the social media, for the actors to comply with the infrastructure because otherwise it would fragment the systems for complying with multiple jurisdictions across the world. In a way, the European model is introducing the bar on top and this is trying to promote the race to the top and it will benefit the international media landscape and make social media accountable at the international level.

>> LIZ CORBIN: That was great. Thank you. Thank you very concise.

We’re going to take a quick break now.

You wanted to come in on that? Do you? Employees do? No. We’re good. . We will take a short break.

In the next part of the session, we’ll be dividing in breakout rooms. So you have a decision to make, there are three breakout rooms to choose from. Each of them will also include some people who are bringing feedback from some of the other EuroDIG workshops that have been taking place.

Breakout room, you can – one, you can discuss E.U. regulation and whether that will support the public sphere.

Room 2, trusted content, when does content become censorship, how does media literacy help deal with disinformation that context.

Room 3, you will be talking about self-and coregulation and what they could do to contribute to the European public sphere.

Three breakout sessions. I hope that you pick one that you would like to discuss in.

I believe you can select your breakout room during the break and you will go straight there at 15: 50, a quick break to go, grab a coffee, and go straight there and at 15: 50. When you get there, you will have a moderator, but you will also need to select amongst yourself a Rapporteur who will report back to this plenary session in the output session at the end of the breakout rooms. I hope that was clear.

Please stay with us.

Are you putting your physical hand up to say something?

>> Nicola Frank: Thank you. Hello, everybody.

Just to ask maybe the session hosts for the breakout rooms, can me put up the list – the different titles so that the teams of the – the teams of the breakout rooms so people can choose more easily? That would be handy. I don’t know. There you go. Thank you!

>> LUISA FRANCO MACHADO: There you go!.

>> Then we will have I suppose just after the break, people can go into the room they choose and this will be at the bottom of the screen, of the Zoom screen. Let’s say we have – what did we say 5 minutes? So 15: 50 we come back for the breakout sessions, is that all right?

>> LIZ CORBIN: Perfect.

Thank you. We’ll see you shortly.

We’ll see you shortly.

(Breakout session)

>> LIZ CORBIN: Welcome back, everybody. Are we all back in the room? Has everybody returned?

>> NADIA TJAHJA: We’re waiting for a few more stragglers but we’re nearly there.

>> LIZ CORBIN: I hope it was an interesting discussion. It was nice to be in smaller groups so that we could each hear and have a bit more time to talk. I hope you felt the same thing.

This is now the output session. This is where we hear from – or do we take a quick break? We didn’t get a proper break before. We got 5 minutes before. In 15 minutes, so a quarter to 5:00CT, we will start the output session, which is where we will hear what everybody was discussing in their groups and the summary of your own. I hope you’re ready for that. Then an opportunity to discuss the main theme a little bit more and to hear from our Rapporteur who will summarize for us.

If it is okay, go, take a break, we’ll see you back in 12 minutes. Thank you, everybody!

>> LIZ CORBIN: It is now 4:46. I would invite Liz Corbin to open the final part of focus session 4, European mediascape, how to recreate a trusted public sphere.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you.

Welcome back, everybody. It is great to see so many of you with this – with us this afternoon. Now is the opportunity to hear from your breakout sessions and also to sum up a little of what we have discussed so far this afternoon and for you to contribute with your – with the thoughts that you have not yet managed to share.

If we could head to the Rapporteur for breakout session 1, which we’re discussing with the E.U. regulation and the effect and support of the European public sphere.

>> NICOLA FRANK: Thank you, Liz.

We had an interesting discussion starting from a report back from the working session 6 on copyright and the implementation of the E.U. directive which is of course very relevant regulation in this context. They discussed many – focus on Article 17, the famous Article 17 of the copyright directive which talks about copyright liability of platforms and touches upon the question of upload filters and they also addressed Article 15 of the same directive, which deals with rights of publishers and others.

So the discussion around this directive, it was really much about how can you sort of avoid to misuse copyright filters, upload filters and for other purposes, can this Article 17 really protect the content providers or is it inconsistent with the freedom of expression? This is not a new debate, this has been going on for a long time. It was very much in the focus also I understand of this discussion. Then some people said, you know, if you have filters for copyright reasons, why can platforms not use them for other content which you don’t want to have like child pornography, for example, why don’t they use it in an efficient way here.

This is, of course, a wider discussion about what platforms could do and should do, they as mentioned in the beginning sometimes, this discussion about copyright, it is misused to block other legal content and the content necessary for the freedom of expression, and what happens in Europe, sometimes using outside Europe, Russia, other countries as a pre text to pass laws which control the freedom of expression on platforms and that can be dangerous.

Now, we have also seen in Europe that for example the platforms take off content which is lawful and legal, but just it doesn’t comply with their own Terms of Reference, with their own rules, public broadcaster, they have the problem sometimes that the lawful content was taken off, just for example for the reason of nudity although this is perfectly legal in the country. That’s another issue which has to be addressed and can, of course, limit the public sphere. If you want, copyright is an issue if you go across the national borders and especially the online world.

To summarize, said that we need the rule of law rather than the power of platforms and that is to say that laws, he felt that laws were necessary to regulate platforms in certain situations. The argument that they can be misused in some countries should not lead to a situation that regulation is not paused for platforms. If you have the rule of law it should work and this will help also to create the public sphere.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you. I’m going to jump to breakout room number 3 next, it is more related to breakout room one than two.

Breakout room 3 we’re discussing self-coregulation and what that could contribute.

Were you the Rapporteur for that? Was there somebody? Whoever it was, please come forward?

>> GIACOMO MAZZONE: I tried to summarize where the conclusion – the condition collusion in the chat, if you want this from me, from Group 3. You can see in the chat, I read from that. It was important because we had non-European perspective in the breakout room and they look at Europe as a unique role because Europe is a unique place where we have two structures, the European Union and Council of Europe that are based on Human Rights principle, the heart of the common living basis and this gives us a unique position and I feel it was important to remember and the responsibility, of course.

Second, there is a general consensus in the group that we need to have principles in regulation more than law and it was a very interesting suggestion that came from a representative in workshop 12 this morning that I repeated in the breakout, we need to go because this is a field that’s challenging, changing every day. We need to go in a very transparent way implementing changes that we think can improve the situation and then discussing openly lessons learned from self-regulation, coregulation, legislation, and to be ready to come back and change and implement again and see if it worked or not.

I think we need to go in an environment where this kind of adaptability of the process could become the norm.

Always raise the point that Europe is an additional priority to add to this list, to create a new public sphere that’s not only the one of the national boundaries. We need to create a public sphere at the European level that needs to have its own rules, own spaces, own preservation and measures to protect.

Also was mentioned using innovation and technologies could help to overcome languages, national barriers. It was suggested that the public common sphere could be created having innovation principles. In this sense we all agree that the recent decision of the European Union and Council of Europe on AI applied to media could be very important.

The last point that was raised, it was also about useability, the success of the platform is largely given to the fact that we spend a lot of money having user friendly interface. This costs a lot of money and common efforts are needed because each of our states is simply capable to put the fraction of the efforts that the global platform could put. We need to be in a comparable scale in order to create really simple and user friendly differences.

These are the main principle, the main consensus I think. As you know, you never know if everybody transferred to what the Rapporteur says.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Everyone is welcome to add anything else if there is anything that wasn’t mentioned, men please come back and mention it.

Let’s go to Group 2. We had started with a tiny group and then people kept oncoming. It was lovely. We had a lovely discussion.

>> Juuso: It was about trusted content, we talked about disinformation and harmful content. We pack this in three different themes that you can see in the chat. The first one, about journalism, so we found that journalists are already increasing the transparency of how they make their stories, where they say what they are saying, which is good for trusting journalism in an v where the audience is critical.

We spoke about how political actors are purposely attacking the list and therefore, the E.U., other public actors should step up to support other journalists.

The second theme, it was an action from the state institutions and the E.U. which ties well with other sessions that have been talked about as well. We also spoke about the accountability of the offline platforms and we found that public institutions are the ones that were able to ensure the accountability and at the same time, online platforms, they can be an ally for us, for example, they have data on how they work and if we can harness the data and use this, it is good for us for making policy as well.

Finally, the third theme that we spoke about, it was constant moderation. We spoke about media education as something that not only goes into the symptoms but also helps to tackle the root cause which is people attracted by content by physical nation.

Schools are a place where you can learn to get a critical approach to the topics. We found that not all educational systems, not all teachers have the capacity at the moment to teach media, media literacy and there is development to be done there.

That more or less summarizes it. There is some more on the chat in there as well if you want to discuss further.

>> LIZ CORBIN: And another has added a comment, similar to the comment you were making earlier about, the digital platform needing to have accountability and international level. Is there anybody that would like to speak up about that? It – about how that would work in practice because we have not yet talked about this in any industry, let alone in media, where you have international companies that work throughout many jurisdictions and they put their tax affairs in one country and the businesses in another. Is there anybody that would like to speak on this particular topic of how to make them accountable at an international level.

You can raise your hand in Zoom or literally just raise it and I should be able to see it.

>> MAIA SIMONISHVILI: An idea, not sure about it, just an idea, every country has some papers in the offices of human defense. You know that we have human defense this year in Georgia. The second just informs general organization about Human Rights violence in media. Maybe it will help.

Every country has human defense work, defending Human Rights, yeah, the office, yeah, if the office is sending information on maybe a fact but they receive from the audience about media, maybe it can help with some connections. The enter international library association, we’re always trying to think of how to connect with other organizations to talk about media literacy trainings in our libraries.

Maybe this one defense office, it will be really good chance to generalize what happens in the country, in the system, and to send it to somebody’s stakeholders. It is just an idea, just in my head, I’m not sure though.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you.

Would anybody else like to comment at this point? In that case, I will move to a reporter for today’s session, trying to bring a lot of the thoughts together that will go in the summary and to the session. We would love to hear what you have taken away as the main highlights of this and if he misses anything, this is the moment to add if you would like recorded in the session.

Welcome to you.

>> YRJO LANSIPURO: I’m busy trying to write the messages right now to represent at the end of this session. Just – I hope that I’ll get some more time for that while the session continues.

Anyway, I think that we have four different categories of action items here. First of all, creating and really creating almost from scratch the European trusted media space and we have the initiatives of what we heard from the European Parliament. From EBU, other media organizations, it is to say let’s not think of a giant sort of project of creating that space.

Actually it consists of many pieces, like, for instance, the EBU initiative here.

Innovation, using the – using the state-of-the-art technology. AI, so on, so forth.

Second, the question of regulating, trying to fix the problems we now have. Of course, we have the DSA and the DMA.

At the same time, I was struck by our New Zealand friend who reminded that if you have a hammer or problems that look like nails, so that apart from the hard regulation what I think will be needed, and that came out from the various parts of the sessions and we need self-regulation, we need coregulation and they are good examples of them.

Then a question of literacy, media literacy, there were very good points made at that workshop about the role of the audience. The audience is the power actually. It was said we see things not as they are, but as we are. That is to say that everybody filters the content through the context where they are, and with their own personalities.

This sort of points out the need and the importance of media literacy and teaching it at all levels. I stop here now. I hope you continue to discuss these points and at the end I could try to put something in writing.

Thank you very much.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Great. Thank you.

Yes, we have – we wanted to hear your thoughts so far.

As I continue to try to influence them!

I didn’t see the message, please come in, add your point of view.

>> MOKABBERI: Thank you very much for the opportunity.

>> NADIA TJAHJA: We currently can’t hear you. Could you try speaking again? I’m going to mute you, ask you to unmute again and we’ll try again.

Are you there?

>> LIZ CORBIN: We’ll try to come back in a moment.

I wondered if Vlad was still online, you – you had put a comment in the chat and we would love to hear more from you on that if you can.

>> VLAD IVANETS: I represent a collaboration of young people around Europe.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Please. Go ahead, explain to us in more detail what you have put in your comment.

>> VLAD IVANETS: I was participating in this room and we were discussing legislation and some other countries, I personally believe that it is impossible to create the universal law because too many interests, too many points of views should be put on the table and everything and we’ll also have some violations against the law in an open way or hidden one. I believe we still can continue – we still continue working on the implementing of media literacy, probably even on the official level, in the system, in our schools, we don’t have any lessons on media or digital literacy. It was basic development and programming and everything and there is now courses on how to understand what kind of information is trustworthy and what research can be trusted and everything. Yes, I also think that we can attract some NGOs as well as activities probably. Yes. I think this could be the way out of this problem of the problem of disinformation and topics that have been discussed today.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you for the contribution. Great.

I have the microphone, I have the privilege to give my view on this, just a personal reflection.

This is not a new problem. Maybe not media literacy, but certainly news literacy. And when I was growing up 20 odd years ago, it is not sufficient, you go in the workplace of 18, 21, you knew nothing, you knew nothing, you would watch the new, you had no idea, the context of that, I grew up in the UKCIS, and when I was a teenager, the IRA, Northern Ireland, the violence there was really bad and yet I went into my adult life really not understanding that and ending up reading books about it to understand it. The education system has a lot to do I believe in this area. That’s entirely my personal opinion.

I think you really struck it, that it has to be something more formal.

On the media regulation part, I will pick on you, Giovanni De Gregorio, you were a speaker earlier. You know, how realistic is it to get national governments and the E.U. to agree on something that’s actually workable and what’s the time scale for it? We have ran out, we’re out of time already. We’re already playing catch up.

>> GIOVANNI DE GREGORIO: I mean, this is a one million question by the way.

We can start looking at how Member States sometimes have anticipated the European policy and then I’m referring for example to Germany, France, we have stayed in steps for example to regulate the information and regulating the take down approach of online platforms and looking at that. In a way, it is not always to look at the European digital policy to find that kind of common, you know, sometimes agreements and Member States have been an engine also for the bottom levels of developing new regulation and the message, it is the DSA, not of course entirely. Still, it is a good example.

At the same time the results of the interests sometimes also of governments, it was interesting, also to have the parts of collaboration, social media, also for example for reasons of public policy, public enforcement, it was the adoption of regulations and terrorist contents and we can see how government cans try to regulate and also use – in order to use also this act to prefer public policies like surveillance and fighting terrorism. So it is not always easy to put together all of the political goals of the different governments and Member States, still I would say once again for the media landscape, this is a good sum up of the different understanding of how we should think about a new media landscape and also the kind of approach that could apply with disinformation and all of the approaches to self-regulation in Member States for taskforce and the administrative authorities, other collaboration fact checkers and even campaigns of media literacy, this is what we need actually and this could be – but still, there is no – there is a lot of fragmentation and we know and how the fragmentation will also drive the problems and the rule of law. Problems for the rule of law, it means also problems for the media landscape at the same time.

I will say it is not easy, still the DSA would probably since it is also a regulation, legal Y technically speaking, it is a first step to put together Member States and under one umbrella, you know, of safeguarding and transparency safeguards providing a common language to address platform governance and online information not just because of the platforms but the information, the problems for the media landscape increasingly, they’re increasingly present online. This is why, not because just we have so many concerns about the power exercised by others.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you.

Mokabberi is back with us.

>> MOKABBERI: Thank you for the opportunity again.

Regarding accountability of the digital platform I would like to provide you two suggestions. One solution is the responsible behavior of global digital platform at U.N. level, the United Nations framework, it is to develop the international treaty on accountability global digital platforms and to apply innovative ways for users and the user, regarding this can run effective campaigns in this regard.

Thank you very much.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you. I didn’t see you had the hand up previously, Nicola.

>> Nicola Frank: I have a question with regard to coregulation and self-regulation, that’s an issue of the area mentioned which is important in this context, and I think we all think this is important and then if you look at the real problem, for example, one problem for the European public sphere, it has been that European content, it is not always on the platforms, platforms, of course, for economic reasons, business reasons moderate content, also influence the ranking of the content. Can coregulation help, self-regulation help in this context? A question to those that have discussed this question earlier, a key question really, how to find the content and, yeah.

>> LIZ CORBIN: You want to jump in?

>> GIOVANNI DE GREGORIO: This is a central question. We have the challenges of the law, there could be interference with freedom of expression, problems for the rule of law, fragmentation, so forth, collaboration on platforms, if you rely on self-regulation, you experience, of course, the platform, of course, they take more decisions and content because they’re free to share views because of business interests that should not be perfectly aligned with public interest. On one hand we have problem was both sides. This is why collaboration should go in, you know, actually collaboration laws have created a common frame of common values framed from a common dialogue from top to bottom and the living platforms to self-regulate the systems that’s been a public framework. This is where and why the European policies is going towards coregulation. We really look at the abuse of power, abuse of freedoms, private actors coming from self-regulation and still we have to look at the abuse of power from public authority from regulations. This is why the opportunity of the intersection, the self-law, we have this model in Europe that’s useful, coming from also the revolution of the European digital policy in the last 20 years and we have seen lots of European constitutions in their own way and this shows us how the common group, the cluster of democratic values can be applied to the private sector and also to the public actors while living with freedom of expression existing at the bottom. The freedom to decide and also under pillars and guidelines, you know, not owned content but by the procedures that they have, the democratic debate or safeguards and accountability.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you. That’s very helpful.

Anyone else want to come in on that topic to answer the question?

>> GIACOMO MAZZONE: Listening to the workshop today, to this plenary, it seems that we’re moving in a world where we will have some levels are self-regulated until proving wrongdoing, others are coregulated, you have a stick to use in case that something goes wrong immediately. Others are hardly regulated because of substantial – you have to avoid common problems that are already happening many times. We need to put them in place, a system where you can move easily from one stage to another according to the needs. It seems to me lessons learned from today, at least this is my interpretation, I’m not sure that others believe the same lessons.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you. Let’s find out.

Are you in a position to share with us any more thoughts or messages?


>> LIZ CORBIN: Excellent.

>> YRJO LANSIPURO: If I can ask Nadia to put the messages on the screen. Wonderful.

This was a hard task. As a former television journalist, I’m sort of used to putting things in a – anyway.

So first, I think there was general support for innovative efforts to create trusted European media space. I stressed the word innovation here. That was mentioned many times.

That should happen by all relevant actors. We have EPE, the European Parliament, but we have also media organizations of the EBU with very interesting approaches of creating parts of that space.

Second, DSA, DMA, they’re the first step to deal with the existing dominance of platforms. It will not go away but we can try to manage it. This is a good first step. All regulation, and here I include also copyright-related regulation and Article 17 discussed, they should – they should avoid causing unintended consequences or collateral damage and, of course, respect Human Rights and fundamental value.

I think in Europe especially we have a special responsibility of keeping whatever we would do in that framework of those values.

It was also stressed that one institution doesn’t solve the problem whether it is governmental or private or whatever. A multistakeholder approach is needed. Here the platforms have a big steak and they have – the – they have a stake, a big stake that’s hundreds of million, it should be encouraged to create transparent and self-regulation.

In the last line of defense against disinformation, against all of the harmful content, it is the individual users, and as we heard today each of them is perceiving content within their own context those defenses should be strengthened by media education.

Thank you.

>> LIZ CORBIN: Thank you very much.

I think you had the hardest job of the day. To summarize what an hour and a half, nearly two hours of content into four paragraphs.

Thank you very much for that.

I agree, it was a good reflection.

Does everybody else agree, was there anything you think that E.U. has missed, the nuances that need to be different? Please do unmute yourself and speak if there is something that you think should be added.

In that case, that’s a resounding –

>> NICOLA FRANK: Sorry. The background question is very important, and I think we’re being a bit too nice to the platforms saying that they should be encouraged, it should be stronger, I don’t know if we can put obliged but something stronger than encourage. If they don’t have self-regulation, things need to change and we probably need some hard regulation in cases.

If it is not obliged, something between encourage and obliged for a native speaker, that would be great.

>> LIZ CORBIN: I totally agree with that. They don’t do anything unless they have to.

Urged. Again, I think they don’t do anything unless they absolutely have to and it is in their interests.

If we think this is the right thing to do, yes, I would say a stronger word. To be required perhaps? To develop transparent self and coregulation.

Any more questions? You may need to unmute yourself? I’m not seeing hands very well.

We will give you 6 minutes back of your life and we’ll finish the session slightly early. We have one more session of the day. Nadia, I’ll hand back to you at this stage and thank you, to everybody, for your contribution and for the great discussion in the chat. It has been great! Thank you!

>> NADIA TJAHJA: Thank you very much! I just wanted to ask, there seems to be a proposal for urged in reflection of the question in the chat. I don’t know if this is something that you can take on, that is being considered in the messages. Besides this, I would really like to very much thank Liz for the moderation of this really new way of how EuroDIG is trying to encourage people to have a real discussion with panelists and really foster the messages to be coming from experiences, coming from groups from the ground up and this is a really great opportunity to explore this. If you have any feedback to give at all, then please do so. It has been a great session to learn a lot from all of the key participants who presented at the beginning, the breakout sessions where we had small enough groups to have a thorough discussion and then coming back to the messages that you all presented.

Thank you very much for your courage to take this on. Of course, as well, to the org team and all of the people who have been involved in the focus session.

With that being said, this is the last session of studio Bruges and I would very much like to thank my remote moderator, cohost Juuso Jarviniemi for the massive support and now we hope we can connect to studio live stage.

Are you there?


Can you hear me? Super! Wonderful! It was an intensive session and day again for you, for the team. We’re following the session on the big screen here. It looked quite engaged and active from a distance at least.

>> NADIA TJAHJA: It has been an active day, the people who are working on the focus session, they really came up with some interesting developments. There was even an announcement today from the EBU on a new project that they have launched today and that’s something very special to have that said at EuroDIG. Having these opportunities coming up, discussing these with the community, it is really a great way to learn more about practices that are happening all over Europe and beyond. I’m very pleased to know how these sessions have developed and I hope that people are encouraged to take on the role as a focal point, joining teams in the future because I’m looking forward to having more of this.

>> SANDRA HOFERICHTER: A question, is Krzysztof Szubert in the studio already? He’s the next point in our agenda.

>> NADIA TJAHJA: Unfortunately, he has not entered the room yet.


I would suggest we put a little bit more music into your studio for the time being waiting for 5 minutes or so because also Studio Belgrade and Trieste, they’re not fully finished. It would be good to reconvene all studios for the closing of the day altogether.

I ask all participants in studio Bruges to be a bit more patient and don’t leave the room. The closing is yet to come. As I said, we have prepared some funny movements in order to make sure we get to Trieste next year. We will also be waiting for our last keynote speaker who is supposed to come in live to host of the polish IGF taking place in December. Please give him a chance to address the audience.

We give you a bit of music in the studio now.

>> NADIA TJAHJA: Thank you very much. We’ll see you in a moment.