Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2002-10-24-Speech-4-016"

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"Mr President, I will begin with the controversial issue in this directive. It should clearly cover financial journalists, and Article 1 of the directive does just that. If journalists profit from the dissemination of information, they will fall within the scope of the directive and they can and will be prosecuted. The controversial question is different. Should journalists be subject to new regulations that may be established by the Commission and financial regulators, as currently proposed under Article 6(10)? Currently, Member States must ensure there is appropriate regulation so that persons who disseminate research or other information, i.e. news organisations, take reasonable care that such information is fairly presented. Commissioner Bolkestein would have us believe that it only concerns journalists if they recommend shares. That is not what the directive says. It actually gives the Commission and financial regulators a role in determining whether information is fairly presented. You do not need much imagination to see how this provision could undermine press freedom. It is extraordinary to suggest that the financial regulators, the most criticised public institutions in most Member States – they always get the blame when banks fail – should help determine whether information has been fairly presented. This is why the ELDR Group has retabled an amendment we tabled in committee seeking to exclude journalists from this regulatory provision, not from the whole scope of the directive, and to do so without opening up any loophole that would allow financial analysts to parade themselves as journalists. Do we really want today to set such an extraordinary precedent? Do we really want to introduce the first ever European regulation of the press? Do we want to ignore the objections of news organisations like and the all of which live by their high reputations? Do we really want to take this terrible first step of regulating the press without a proper discussion of the potential consequences? I urge you to back the ELDR Group amendment and reject this ill-thought-through attempt to introduce media regulation by the back door."@en1
"Agence France Press"1

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