Press concentration, convergence and innovation: Europe in search of a new communications policy
(The Netherlands Press Fund in The Hague, The Netherlands)
ABSTRACT: Printed press all over Europe have to face many similar problems; there are general indications that print has to deal with structural stagnations. Circulation is declining; advertisers seem to be less interested in printed products. Print has also to deal with raising costs and with more competition. Due to those developments publishing companies preferred more a policy of saving costs particularly through economies of scale. That stimulated press concentration, declining ties with readers and advertisers, and decreasing interest in innovation. For the benefit of media diversity governments are separately and collectively in the European Community in search for a new communications policy to deal with those problems in a more structured way. Next to a distant, passive role of the government, gradually in several European countries it is recognised that for a real freedom of speech it would be necessary that the government also fulfils a care duty, to commit to a policy aimed at upholding and enhancing the diversity of the media.