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NUJ supports new European campaign on media ownership and pluralism

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By Ishbel Macleod, PR and social media consultant

March 20, 2013 | 2 min read

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) has announced that it supports a new European campaign on media ownership and pluralism.

The European Initiative on Media Pluralism petition (EIMP) calls for the EU to act to protect media pluralism and press freedom. It calls for an EU Directive containing: legislation to avoid concentration of media ownership in the media; the independence of supervisory bodies from political influence; the prevention of the abuse of media power for special interests; and transparency on the ultimate ownership of media outlets.

The NUJ says the legislation could not control or regulate media content, and would only be concerned with the ownership and control of the industry

Barry McCall, NUJ president, said: "Citizens in Britain and Ireland have paid a high price for many years for the unhealthy concentration of media ownership which has been allowed to become established in both countries.

"In the UK there is the awful spectacle of a private sector media baron who is not even a British citizen dictating the terms on which the public service broadcaster is allowed to exist while in Ireland the groupthink encouraged by a largely uncritical media clearly played a role in some of the disastrous economic decisions taken by governments in the early part of this decade.

"It is now time for action to promote media pluralism and protect press freedom and the NUJ welcomes the campaign to collect a million signatures across the EU to help put these important concepts into law."

A meeting will take place tomorrow, 21 March, to bring together members of the House of Lords

and the Commons with people concerned about the concentration of media power.

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