The WFFM is preparing for its sixth edition with the priority set out in its World Free Media Charter to "strengthen the independence of public service broadcasting (or public media) vis-à-vis government and market interests"
October 02, 2016 — We, members of the International Mobilization Committee of the World Forum of Free Media, would like to express our concern regarding the ongoing changes in Brazilian public communication and the risk that the Brazilian public broadcaster, Empresa Brasileira de Comunicação (EBC - htp://www.ebc.cotm.br), faces the possible loss of social participation.
In recent editions of the World Forum of Free Media in Tunis (Tunisia) and Montreal (Canada), we had the opportunity to discuss the relationship between public media and social participation. In 2015, in Tunis, we followed the situation of the Greek public company, the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (or ERT). Despite the ERT having been closed by the government some years before, the public broadcaster was re-opened and has since been kept in operation thanks to the determination of the workers and civil society.
In 2016, our discussions in Montreal of the attempts to change the Brazilian EBC worried us for threatening one of the most advanced and experienced public communication broadcasters in Latin America that includes a place for social participation on the Board of Trustees made in consultation with civil society.
More recently, there is news of a "Provisional Measure" that changes the character of the EBC by extinguishing its Board of Trustees and putting the management mandate directly under the government’s control, therefore demolishing the public character of the EBC.
The World Forum of Free Media (born in Brazil, with editions and seminars already held in Africa, Europe and North America) is preparing for its sixth edition with the priority set out in its World Free Media Charter to "strengthen the independence of public service broadcasting (or public media) vis-à-vis government and market interests" (LINK to CHARTER: http://www.fmml.net/spip.php?).
So we turn to the parliamentarians, free media, and leaders of Brazilian civil society, as well as representatives of international organizations committed to freedom of expression, to call for the preservation of the principles that guarantee the public character of the EBC: including the Board of Trustees, the mandates of both the Board of Trustees and its President, and legal measures that ensure the financial autonomy of public communication in Brazil.
Signed by the members of the
International Mobilization Committee of the World Forum of Free Media