How the EU Can Safeguard Media Freedom and Pluralism in Hungary and Poland
9:00am - 10:30am EST
3:00pm - 4:30pm CET
4:00pm - 5:30pm EET
About this event
Independent, pluralistic media are a critical infrastructure of democracy. However, in recent years, the European Union has suffered from their erosion, particularly in Hungary and Poland, where changes made by the incumbent governments to media regulators and public media, as well as private media capture and state favoritism toward pro-government media outlets have made it particularly challenging to speak truth to power. The European Union’s institutions are aware that these challenges to media freedom and pluralism are part of a broader rule-of-law backsliding in these countries, but despite having tools at their disposal, they so far have done little to contain or reverse the negative changes in this respect.
How could the European Union make better use of its existing instruments to protect media freedom and pluralism in its member states? Could legal action by the European Commission, namely the use of infringement procedures, help reverse some of the adverse trends observed in Hungary and Poland? What can be the role of the planned Media Freedom Act in establishing safeguards for the sector in the European Union? This event will discuss these key questions related to the role the EU institutions can and should play in defending independent media within the union and in countering the systemic assault they face in certain member states.
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The German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) is a non-partisan policy organization committed to the idea that the United States and Europe are stronger together.
John MorijnChair in Law and Politics in International Relations, Faculty of Law, University of Groningen
Zsuzsanna VéghVisiting Fellow
Zsuzsanna Végh is a Visiting Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Her analytical focus lies on Central and Eastern Europe, especially the foreign and EU policies of the Visegrad countries, the state of demo...