NEWS ARCHIVES

January 18, 2011
Euronews: Channel of Propoganda
    
 

Since 1998, Euronews can be watched in nearly every household that has cable TV. To get the channel started, the European Commission put in around 10 million euro over three years. The EU and Euronews each have full non-commercial retransmission and reproduction rights for the productions. In this way, the European Commission can ensure that Euronews broadcasts are accurate and “balanced” according to them, particularly with regard to the positions and activities of the European Institutions.

 

Euronews is owned by 21 European public broadcasters. It is based in Lyon and has translation of its programmes into ten different languages. So far, Euronews has relied on material from its owners, supplemented by content from its three small Euronews offices, in Brussels, Cairo and Doha, Qatar. But the channel is in the process of adding more bureaus: eight by the end of 2011 and eight more to be opened in 2012.

Recently, European public broadcasters faced with budget cuts have reduced their contributions to Euronews. The European Commission, however, has an ever-growing budget. The European Commission has tripled its contributions to Euronews over the last three years to 15 million euros annually at present. Advertising and other commercial sources of revenue provide about 60 percent of the channel’s total budget of 60 million euros.

 

Without start-up funding and a large annual contribution from the European Commission, Euronews would not stand a chance on the open market. Euronews claims that 2,6 million viewers tune in weekly across Europe: only a small fraction of the 180 million European households in which the channel is available.

In Britain, for example, about 0.5 percent of households watch the channel at least once a week, compared with 19 percent that watch the BBC`s 24-hour British news channel. In spite of this, an eleventh language (Ukrainian) is scheduled to be added.

 

With the current structure of its budget, Euronews will never be capable of critical evaluation. You do not bite the hand that feed you: TV programmes that critically evaluate the activities and money spent by the EU institutions we will never be seen in Euronews. Its role is to be a propaganda channel for the European Union, with a political line in favour of increased supra national governance of the European Union.

Jan Å Johansson

 

 

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