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Date: 26/06/2018 (13.30-15.30)

The exposure of citizens to large scale disinformation, including misleading or outright false information, is a major challenge for Europe. The phenomenon has a bigger impact than ever before as it is easier for anyone to post and share any news or information online.

Social media and online platforms play an important role in speeding up the spread of such news and they enable a global reach without much effort from the author.

A comprehensive policy response must reflect the specific roles of different actors (social platforms, news media and users), and define their responsibilities in the light of a number of guiding principles. These include the freedom of expression, media pluralism, and the right of citizens to diverse and reliable information.

On 26 April 2018, the Commission adopted a Communication on Tackling Online Disinformation reflecting its commitment to improve European citizens' access to quality and unbiased information online. It maps a way forward a better online media ecosystem where four overarching principles and objectives prevail: an improved transparency regarding the way information is produced or sponsored, the diversity and credibility of information, and inclusive solutions with broad stakeholder involvement.

Concretely, it proposes new actions including self-regulatory tools to tackle the spread and impact of online disinformation in Europe and ensure the protection of European values and democratic systems:

  • A Code of Practice on Disinformation;
  • An independent European network of fact-checkers;
  • A secure European online platform on disinformation to support the network of fact-checkers and relevant academic researchers;
  • Support to quality and diversified information;
  • Outreach activities aimed at countering false narratives about Europe and tackling disinformation, within and outside the EU;
  • A Secure and resilient election processes;
  • Enhancing media literacy.

The workshop will explore how improved transparency, diversity and credibility of information, and inclusive solutions with broad stakeholder involvement can help tackle online disinformation.


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