In a blog post over at Decrypter la communication européenne, Michaël discusses the buy-in of the European Commission into the content of the news channel Euronews. According to Michaël, with a global yearly budget of 6.5 million Euros, any Commission directorate general can buy short or long magazine contributions or series each to be aired 15 times on the channel.
The first of these productions is “On the frontline” that Euronews produces in co-operation with the Directoral General Home Affairs who currently even portray the Youtube video of the first On the frontline episode on their front page. That is definitely showing a problematic “hybridisation” of journalist and PR content, in particular since Euronews does not even reveal the nature of the programme on its website.
This type of bought content clearly makes Euronews, in my eyes, become an official governmental (i.e. EU) propaganda channel. If you would ask me, I’d say that the European Commission should refrain from spending public money on bought journalism and Euronews should refrain from letting itself buy in such a way.
PS*: If an EU candidate country’s government would do the same, I suppose it would get serious problems in the media freedom section of the accession conditions. And if I were Russia, I would point my finger to the EU the next time anyone in the Commission of member states complains about undue influence of state institutions on media channels.
* “PS” added at 11:28.