MEDIANE - Media in Europe for Diversity Inclusiveness

At present, various groups and persons are not represented in the media landscape in a balanced way. In fact, some communities and persons remain invisible in print press, on screen and on air; even worse, when they are covered they are confronted with preconceived roles and consigned to limited areas of representation.

The fact that a considerable segment of the European population has no public voice audible throughout the media makes it unlikely for these groups to take part in democratic debates and in the public opinion building process. Hence, the joint European Union/Council of Europe MEDIANE programme has chosen to strengthen the abilities and capacities of European media outlets and their professionals to include diversity in their media content production and design.

Building upon the experiences and results of the 2008 – 2010 "Speak out against discrimination!" Campaign and the joint EU/Council of Europe 2010 – 2012 MARS – Media against Racism in Sports" Programme, MEDIANE – Media in Europe for Diversity Inclusiveness offers European and Thematic encounters as a first step for sharing practices, but also the opportunity for media outlets and professionals to share professional practices directly on an one-to-one basis, through "European Exchanges of Media Practices" (EEMPs).

One of MEDIANE's main outputs is the MEDIANE BOX on Media Diversity Inclusiveness. The The MEDIANE BOX is an instrument for the media industry to self-monitor their abilities to include diversity in their daily work and also to serve as an action-support tool in favour of inclusive, diverse and intercultural modes of media content, design and production.

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Global objective
MEDIANE's global objective advocates and stimulates inclusive and intercultural approaches of design and production media content, that could be applied to any kind of media sector by:

supporting European Exchanges of Media Practices (EEMP) in journalism training, journalism practice and media production,

implementing media encounters linking the various actors of the European media industry,

analysing media practices to build a Media Index on Diversity Inclusiveness; this Index will be a self-monitoring and action tool regarding media content design and production.
Some key figures about the problem…
In Europe only one quarter of news items feature women, even though they account for over half of the European population (GMMP, 2010). Immigrants represent around 10% of the EU population (Eurostat, 2011), , but they represent less than 5% of the main actors in the news (Ter Wal, 2004). Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people account for roughly 6% of the population of the United Kingdom but account for less than 1% of the people seen on screen. In the UK, 20% of the population is disabled, but less than 1% is represented on British TV (CDN 2009-10 Progress Report).

In Belgium (CSA, 2012), persons with disabilities still appear in secondary roles and only as subjects in relation to disability. Still in Belgium, women and ethnic minorities appear mostly in secondary roles or as extras in news programmes (CSA 2012, AJPB 2011), and rarely as an expert or a spokesperson. In France (CSA, 2008), while ethnic minorities account for 19% of actors in all TV news, they are represented more heavily in sports and musicreports , than in political, social and economic news: more than a third, compared with less than 10%. Generally, in Europe (TerWal, 2004) these minorities appear less than 5% in political coverage, with women (GMMP 2010) accounting for less than 5% of the actors in economic or scientific news.