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Press Regulation in an Era of Convergence conference

Event information

START DATE 24 September 2015
START TIME 09:30am

Room 219-220, College Building, Middlesex University, London NW4 4BT

END DATE 24 September 2015
END TIME 06:00pm

Diana Robinson

Media convergence enables citizens to use the same devices so as to access a diverse range of content that was formerly tied to specific platforms. It also presents a policy challenge as regulators struggle to accommodate new technological and market realities within existing governance structures. 

An aspect of convergence that has so far received scant attention is that between broadcasting, on-demand services and the press. Newspapers are not just 'news' printed on 'paper', but are also understood as news content available on websites carrying videos that are reminiscent of television. The conditions for the carriage of such videos are hotly contested as press publications resent large fees imposed on them in departure from the principle of net neutrality. The regulation of such videos as audiovisual media services is also controversial, leading to a differentiated implementation of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive and testing its relationship with the E-Commerce Directive. 

The technological convergence between press and broadcasting throws into sharp relief the historically disparate regulation of the two sectors and raises the question of whether technological convergence should lead to regulatory convergence. A liberalisation of the regulatory environment would further level the playing field but might put the common foundations of the European media landscape in jeopardy. Not only is it questionable whether future European media regulation should run under the banner of 'press freedom'. Also, the notion of 'press freedom' is marred by the uncertainty as to the actors that are entitled to its privileges and responsibilities.


At this one-day conference, hosted by Middlesex University School of Law and generously funded by the British Academy and the Leverhulme Trust, the future of press regulation in an era of convergence will be debated by Professor Mark Cole (University of Luxembourg), Dr Oliver Fueg (DG Connect, European Commission), Ms Lara Fielden (IPSO and Reuters Institute), Professor Thomas Gibbons (University of Manchester), Professor Bernd Holznagel (Institute for Information, Telecommunication and Media law, University of Münster), Dr Michael Kogler (Austrian Federal Chancellery, Department for Media Law), Professor Päivi Korpisaari (University of Helsinki), Ms Jenny Metzdorf (University of Luxembourg), and Professor Ian Walden (Institute of Computer and Communications Law, Queen Mary University of London), alongside Middlesex University's Dr Irini Katsirea.  


Registration for the conference closes on 15 September 2015. Registration and refreshments during the conference are free. Registered delegates up to a maximum number of ten will have the option to attend a conference dinner on Thursday evening, at a cost of £56.95.

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9:30-10:00 Registration


Dr. Irini Katsirea (Middlesex University): Welcome

Dr. Oliver Fueg (DG Connect, European Commission):
Prospects for a Digital Single Press Market in the Digital Single Market
11:00-11:30 Coffee


Ms Jenny Metzdorf (University of Luxembourg):
The AVMSD and the online press - recital 28 hitting the headlines
Dr. Irini Katsirea (Middlesex University):
Freedom or regulation for the online press: The UK approach
Dr. Michael Kogler (Austrian Federal Chancellery, Department for Media Law):
Too short for television? About the potential to replace television.
13:00-14:00 Lunch

Professor Thomas Gibbons (University of Manchester):
Conceptions of 'the press' and the functions of regulation
Professor Mark Cole (University of Luxembourg):
Content restrictions for media: applying them differently for differentforms of media?

Ms Lara Fielden (IPSO and Reuters Institute):
Press Regulation: Taking Account of Media Convergence
15:30-16:00 Coffee

Professor Ian Walden (Institute of Computer and
Communications Law, Queen Mary University of London):
Applying the Editors' Code to Online Behaviours
Professor Bernd Holznagel (Institute for Information, Telecommunication and Media law, University of Münster):
Net Neutrality and the Press
Professor Paivi Korpisaari (University of Helsinki):
The Principle of Instrumental Neutrality in the Finnish Mass Media Regulation
17:30-18:00 Final discussion
19:00 Dinner

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