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Research Paper on the European Media Freedom Act

The European Media Freedom Act’s Proposal

On 16 September 2022, the European Commission published the long-awaited Proposal for the European Media Freedom Act (‘EMFA’). The Proposal for the EMFA represents a significant step in EU legislative initiatives regarding free media, forming the most recent addition to a rather crowded EU regulatory landscape regarding media freedom and pluralism.

The new research carried out

Our new Research Paper follows up on our previous Research Paper. The new Research Paper aims to assess the compatibility of the provisions of the Proposal for the EMFA with the pre-existing EU instruments in the area of media freedom and media pluralism. In addition, it assesses whether these provisions are consistent with the Commission’s Better Regulation Guidelines and the Interinstitutional Better Law-Making Agreement, as well as the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality.

The Research Paper concludes that were the current Proposal for the EMFA to become law, there would be a risk of overregulation in the field of media freedom and media pluralism. The main provisions of concern are Articles 2, 14, 17, 18, and 19. The result of such overregulation would be legal uncertainty which results in the Proposal in its current form not achieving its intended benefits, being targeted and easily complied with, and resulting in unnecessary regulatory burdens.

When moving onto the latter stages of the legislative procedure, the EU institutions should ensure that the commitments made as part of the Better Regulation Guidelines and Better Law-Making Agreement are followed. It is important that legal certainty and utmost coherence of the Proposal is achieved for it to fit effectively within the EU regulatory framework on media freedom and pluralism and achieve its intended objectives when it comes to protecting media freedom and media pluralism in the European Union.

You can find and download the full Research Paper below:

This paper presents independent research made possible through Google funding. The views expressed herein are solely those of the authors, and full intellectual independence from any third parties – including Google – has been guaranteed.

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