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Conference: Obligations of public media should be specified

The public-service media need a text that would specify their obligations more clearly than the law, thus allowing them to justify increased financial requirements, said Werner Rumphorst, director of the legal affairs department of the European Broadcasting Union.

The public-service media need a text that would specify their obligations more clearly than the law, thus allowing them to justify increased financial requirements, said Werner Rumphorst, director of the legal affairs department of the European Broadcasting Union.

Speaking at the Public Media in Slovakia conference in Bratislava on April 24, Rumphorst added that such a text "should not be considered a treaty with the state."

"The risk is that a treaty, or whatever we call it, will be viewed too narrowly - as a treaty between media management and the government," media expert Stanislava Benická said.

According to Benická, a broad discussion involving experts and the non-professional public should reveal what is really expected from the public media.

"In the EU, there are different ways of financing the public media," said Renate Schroeder, director of the Office of the European Federation of Journalists. "In southern countries, this is based mainly on commercials, but as you go north, licence fees prevail. The version with commercials is more difficult from the point of view of broadcasting content."

In Slovakia, the public media are co-financed by a combination of licence fees and the state budget. A system of agreements with the state is being prepared that will outline the services required by the state, while specifying how the public media will be financed. TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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