Strasbourg, 16 October 2009
COMMITTEE OF EXPERTS ON NEW MEDIA
29 to 30 September 2009
Room G 05
1. Opening of the meeting and adoption of the agenda
The meeting was opened by Mr Jan MALINOWSKI, Head of the Media and Information Society Division. Mr Malinowski briefly presented the results of the 1st Council of Europe Conference of Ministers responsible for Media and New Communication Services (28 and 29 May 2009, Reykjavik, Iceland)1 and gave a short introduction to the work of other working groups subordinate to the Steering Committee on the Media and New Communication Services (CDMC) (see also item 6 below).
The MC-NM adopted the draft agenda (MC-NM(2009)OJ1).
2. Election of chairperson and vice-chairperson
The members of the MC-NM elected Mr Thomas SCHNEIDER (Switzerland) as chairperson and Mr Michael TRUPPE (Austria) as vice-chairperson of the Committee for a one-year term of office.
3. Information of interest to the work of the MC-NM
The Secretariat gave a short report on the consultation meeting on public service media governance, held in Strasbourg on 17 and 18 September 2009. A written report will be forwarded to the MC-NM shortly.
The Secretariat informed the MC-NM of the adoption of Committee of Ministers Recommendation (2009) 5 on harmful content2 and its planned implementation.
The Secretariat of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) informed the MC-NM of their Recommendation and Resolution on Internet on online services appropriate for minors.3 In the Recommendation, the PACE calls on member states and the Committee of Ministers to take action on issues such as the creation of secure, restricted-access networks which filter content harmful to minors; public quality standards and ratings of Internet and online media services adequate for minors and restriction of access by children to adult content; the potential psychological risks for children and adolescents using Internet and online media excessively; and the feasibility of drawing up legal standards for the regulation of online gambling which may be harmful to minors.
The Secretariat also presented the multi-stakeholder European Dialogue on Internet Governance (Geneva, 14 and 15 September 2009)4 with reference to its main outcomes, namely the European-wide concern regarding the protection of human rights on the Internet and also the public value (public interest) of the Internet. Reference was also made to EuroDIG themes for discussion, including access to content (with reference to net neutrality), the governance of social media, and effective media literacy.
4. Examination of understanding of media and mass communication services in the new information and communications environment with a particular focus on:
- elaborating a policy document reviewing the concept of media itself to include relevant new media and media-like mass communication services and service providers
- application to the new services or service providers of Council of Europe standards that were developed for traditional forms of mass communication
- regulatory activities required to ensure respect for Council of Europe values in the framework of new media and media-like mass communication services
Decisions taken by the MC-NM:
The MC-NM decided to create a working group of five MC-NM members - Mr Michael Truppe (Austria), Mr Andres JÔESAAR (Estonia), Ms Susanne DING (Germany), Mr Liutauras ULEVICIUS (Lithuania) and Ms Maja RAKOVIĆ (Serbia) – to examine the new notion of media and to prepare a preliminary policy document by 28 February 2010.
Comments of the MC-NM:
The MC-NM noted that there is no common notion of what “media” means in Council of Europe member states and that much media legislation at the national level does not refer to media and media-like mass-communication services. Reference was made to the need to take greater account of the impact of media-like mass communication services on the public’s right to freedom of expression and information, and on democratic participation. Several members suggested the need for a graduated approach when considering the potential responsibilities of media and media-like mass communication services.
5. Examination of the challenges to individual’s (in particular, children and young people) rights to freedom of expression and information, privacy and other fundamental rights, as well as to their dignity and security on the Internet.
Decisions taken by the MC-NM:
The MC-NM decided to create a working group of six members - Mr Michael Truppe (Austria), Ms Susanne Ding (Germany), Sjoera NAS (the Netherlands), Mr Pawel STEPKA (Poland), Mr Alexander BORISOV (Russian Federation), Mr Hamit ERSOY (Turkey) – in order to prepare draft documents by 28 February 2010.
It was further decided to invite all member states to submit examples of self- and/or co-regulation initiatives (e.g. codes of conduct) with regard to network neutrality5, social networking and search engines, to the Secretariat by 27 November.
Comments of the MC-NM:
The MC-NM decided to concentrate its examination on access to content (network neutrality), and the human rights aspects of the operation of search engines and of social networking services. Reference should also be made to improving children’s identity online, protecting privacy and freedom of expression when sharing personal data, and peer mediation between users in order to avoid the abuse of rights on these services.
Taking account of examples of national practice, this examination should address the challenges to human rights that present themselves for users of these services, how the challenges could be addressed through co-/self-regulation, and which non-state actors would need to be involved in elaborating self/co-regulation tools.
With regard to social networking sites, the MC-NM discussed the utility of maximising the privacy default settings for users. The use of social networking services by young children as a learning tool for testing and affirming their identity and the dangers of cyber-bullying via these sites was underlined. Reference was made to several reports and related self-regulatory codes, some of which had already been sent to the members before the meeting.6
With regard to the implementation of the Declaration by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on protecting the dignity, security and privacy of children on the internet, adopted on 20 February 2008, consideration was given to several technical possibilities for removing or controlling content created online: water-marking of content to indicate content that should be removed after a certain time, settings that allow content to self-destruct after a certain time, and settings to identify computers as a computer used by children which would then mark output automatically as created by children and which would require regular approval that content should remain online to avoid automatic removal of content.
With regard to search engines, consideration was given to how they can affect access to information through non-transparent prioritisation of search results and whether they challenge anonymity online by indexing personal data.
With regard to media literacy, the importance of literacy for all age groups was underlined. The implementation of existing Council of Europe standards was also stressed in this regard.
With regard to professional standards for journalists and their anonymity, the MC-NM noted the need to explore the protection of journalists in online environments.
6. Draft texts prepared by the Ad hoc Advisory Groups reporting to the CDMC
The Secretariat gave a short introduction to the terms of reference of the Ad-hoc Advisory Group on Public service media governance (MC-S-PG) and on Cross-border Internet (MC-S-CI)7 and informed the MC-NM of the need for synergy. The MC-NM might be invited by the CDMC to examine certain draft texts prepared by the Ad-hoc Advisory Groups and forward their comments to the CDMC.
7. Other business
Decisions taken by the MC-NM:
The MC-NM decided to establish a shared online working space and mailing-lists in order to facilitate its work.
Comments of the MC-NM:
The MC-NM agreed on the need to involve other stakeholders in its work and was keen to develop new strategies in order to promote dialogue with them. In this context, the multi-stakeholder hearing on policy frameworks for new media, held on the morning of 29 September was welcomed.
The Secretariat informed the MC-NM that the dates of its next meeting will be communicated to them after the next meeting of the CDMC (20 to 23 October 2009).
LIST OF PARTICIPANTS
Mr Michael TRUPPE, Legal Advisor, Department for Media Affairs / Information Society, Federal Chancellery – Austria – Legal Service, Vienna, Austria
Mr Aqil GUNASHOV, 2nd Secretary, Department of Human Rights, Democratisation and Humanitarian Issues, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Baku, Axerbaijan
Mr Michael VAN DEN NEST, Department for Culture, Youth, Sports and Media, Brussels, Belgium
Bosnia and Herzegovina / Bosnie-Herzégovine
Mr Nelly STOYANOVA, State Agency for Information Technologies and Communications, Sofia, Bulgaria
Czech Republic/République Tchèque
Mr Andres JÔESAAR, Head of Corporate and Content Services, Tele2 Eesti AS + Chairman of the Council, Estonian Public Broadcasting Council, Tallinn, Estonia
M. Xavier INGLEBERT, Adjoint au Chef du Bureau des affaires européennes et internationales, Direction du Développement des Médias-Services du Premier Ministre, Paris, France
Ms Susanne DING, Policy Advisor in the International Unit, Federal Commissioner for Culture and the Media (BKM), Berlin, Germany
(2nd German delegate)
Ms Amélie KUHN, Media Adviser, Representation of Rhineland Palatinate, Brussels, Belgium
Mr Ioannis MANTZOUANIS, Representation Permanente de Grèce – Bureau de Presse et de Communication, Strasbourg, France
Mme Vasiliki KORDATOU, Representation Permanente de Grèce – Bureau de Presse, Strasbourg, France
Italy / Italie
Mr Liutauras ULEVICIUS, PHD Candidate, Research Area – Legal Status of Electronic Media, Mykolas Romeris University, Vilnius, Lithuania
Mrs Sjoera NAS, Internet and Telecom Expert, Dutch Data Protection Authority (CBP), DEN HAAG, The Netherlands
Ms Kristine DAHL, Adviser (Legal), Royal Ministry of Culture and Church Affairs, Oslo, Norway
Mr Pawel STEPKA, Expert, Department of European Policy and International Relations, National Broadcasting of Poland, Warsaw, Poland
Mr Alexander BORISOV, Professor, Moscow State Institute of International Relations, Foreign Ministry of Russia, Moscow, Russia
Ms Maja RAKOVIĆ, Adviser, Media Department, Ministry of Culture, Belgrade, Serbia
Slovak Republic/République Slovaque
Ms Carmen CILLER, Assistant Professor, Departmen of Journalism and Media Studies, University Carlos III de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Sweden / Suede
Mr Thomas SCHNEIDER, Federal Office of Communications, Bienne, Switzerland
"The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia"/"L'ex-République Yougoslave de Macédoine"
Mr Hamit ERSOY, Head of International Relations Department, RTŰK, Radio and Television Supreme Council, Bilkent, Turkey
Mr Hasan Ali ERDEM, Expert of International Relations Department. Contact details as above.
Mr Serhii SHABLII, Counsellor of the CoE Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine
Mr Karl JAGDIS, Project Manager , International Broadcasting and Media, Department for Culture, Media and Sport, London, England
* * *
European Commission/Commission européenne
Mr Harald E. TRETTENBREIN, Deputy Head of Unit, Audiovisual and Media Policies Unit, European Commission, Directorate General for Information Society and Media, Brussels, Belgium
Conference of International Non-Governmental Organisations of the Council of Europe
Mr Gabriel NISSIM, Conférence des OING du Conseil de l’Europe, Strasbourg, France
PACE / APCE
Mr Andrew MCINTOSH, Chairman, Sub-committee on Media Culture, Science and Education Parliamentary Assembly, PACE.
* * *
European Broadcasting Union / Union Européenne de Radio-Télévision (EBU)
Mme Anne-Caterine BERG, Legal Adviser, Legal and Public Affairs Department, EBU-UER, Switzerland
European Federation of Journalists (EFJ)
Mr Marc GRUBER
European Newspaper Publishers’ Association (ENPA)
Mr Henrik MUNTHE, Attorney at Law, Norwegian Media Business Association, Oslo, Norway
Mrs Hannah MCCAUSLAND, ENPA, Brussels, Belgium
European Digital Rights (EDRI)
Mme Meryem MARZOUKI, European Digital Rights, Paris, France
Community Media Forum Europe
Ms Nadia BELLARDI, Vice-President, Community Media Forum Europe (CMFE), Zürich, Switzerland
Secretariat of the Council of Europe / Secrétariat du Conseil de l’Europe
Mr Jan MALINOWSKI, Head of Media and Information Society Division
Mr Lee HIBBARD, Administrator, Media and Information Society Division
Ms Franziska KLOPFER, Media and Information Society Division
Mr Eugen CIBOTARU, Administrator, Media and Information Society Division
Mr Michael REMMERT, Head of Unit, Forum for the Future of Democracy
Ms Elvana THACI, Administrator, Media and Information Society Division
Ms Josette YOESLE
Ms Rebecca BOWEN
1) Opening of the meeting and adoption of the agenda
2) Election of chairperson
3) Information of interest to the work of the MC-NM
4) Examination of understanding of media and mass communication services in the new information and communications environment with a particular focus on:
5) Elaborating a policy document reviewing the concept of media itself to include relevant new media and media-like mass communication services and service providers
6) Application to the new services or service providers of Council of Europe standards that were developed for traditional forms of mass communication
7) Regulatory activities required to ensure respect for Council of Europe values in the framework of new media and media-like mass communication services
8) Examination of the challenges to individual’s (in particular, children and young people) rights to freedom of expression and information, privacy and other fundamental rights, as well as to their dignity and security on the Internet.
9) Draft texts prepared by the Ad hoc Advisory Groups reporting to the CDMC
10) Other business