As media issues become increasingly transnational, both national and international networks are needed in order to discuss common issues. As the supervisory and regulatory authority for audiovisual media issues in Sweden, we cooperate with the other European supervisory and regulatory authorities as part of a network. We also work particularly closely with the Nordic media authorities. We also participate in a number of Swedish networks where our issues are discussed.
The Nordic countries have a lot in common, which makes it useful to exchange practices on several media issues. Media legislation in the Nordic countries is largely based on the Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMSD): our media markets have a similar evolution, and moreover, many of the stakeholders are active in the same Nordic market.
There are two cooperative bodies within the EU in which we actively participate. These are the European Platform of Regulatory Authorities (EPRA) and the European Regulators Group for Audiovisual Media Services (ERGA). The aim of these forums is to provide a platform for discussion and knowledge sharing between European supervisory authorities.
The European Regulators Group for Audiovisual Media Services (ERGA) was set up by the Commission in 2014. ERGA is made up of EU regulatory authorities and works on behalf of the Commission. ERGA aims to advise and assist the Commission with the implementation of a common European directive/law in the field of media; the AVMSD (AV Directive). There are a number of working groups within ERGA where SPBA actively participates in meetings and provides expertise. These are; implementation of the AV Directive, disinformation and media diversity and detectability. The work of the groups is usually presented in various reports that are made public and used by the Commission as a basis for their work.
The European Platform of Regulatory Authorities (EPRA) was established in 1995 and consists of 54 supervisory authorities from 47 countries that are members of EPRA. Sweden has been a member of EPRA since its inception. This is a forum for supervisory authorities working in the media field in Europe. Both SPBA and the Swedish Media Council participate from Sweden. EPRA is an open platform for discussions on a range of relevant topics for regulatory authorities in Europe. At the two meetings held annually, common issues in the media field are discussed and experiences are also exchanged in smaller working groups. EPRA meetings are informal, and its statutes prohibit common standpoints or declarations.
Nordic media authorities
The Nordic media authorities meet once a year to discuss and exchange experiences on current media issues. The Nordic countries have a lot in common, which makes it useful to exchange practices on several issues. The regulatory framework, which is largely based on the AV Directive, is the same, media developments are similar; and moreover, many of the media market stakeholders operate in a Nordic market. The annual meetings are organised by the respective media authorities.
Norway - The Norwegian Media Authority deals with issues relating to child protection, media and information literacy, age limits for films, press subsidies and licensing of radio and television, monitors media developments and produces reports, as well as handling regulatory issues and supervision.
Denmark - The Danish media authority (the Palaces and Culture Agency) handles many tasks in the media field: press and media subsidies, handling of radio and television broadcasts and complaints about advertising, production of media usage statistics, regulatory issues in the media field and rules on the choice of TV provider. The Board is the secretariat of both the radio and television board and the media board.
Finland - The Finnish communications authority (the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency, TRAFICOM) handles radio and television licensing and reports on broadcasting activities for on-demand TV as well.
Iceland - The Icelandic media authority (Fjölmiðlanefnd) deals with issues relating to commercial communications, child protection and broadcasting licences, and monitors and follows media developments. It includes information on media ownership, a list of media service providers and their rules on editorial independence.
There are several different networks in Sweden in which we participate.
One of them is MIK Sverige, which was established by the Swedish Media Council and aims to develop knowledge and streamline media and information literacy (MIL, or “MIK” in Swedish) efforts. MIK Sverige is a national network of stakeholders established by the Swedish Media Council in 2020. The aim of this network is to develop knowledge and streamline efforts in the field through collaboration between stakeholders, thereby reinforcing media and information literacy among everyone in Sweden. During its build-up period, the network is being led by a temporary steering committee which, in addition to the Swedish Media Council, consists of the National Library of Sweden, the Swedish Press and Broadcasting Authority and the Swedish Film Institute.
Swedac is the authority responsible for coordination of Swedish market surveillance. Coordination is conducted by bodies such as the Market Surveillance Council, which includes representatives of the authorities concerned. Swedac is also the point of contact for EU bodies on general market surveillance issues, and works both nationally and internationally to increase the exchange of experience on market surveillance and ensure consistent application of the rules on market surveillance. SPBA is responsible for the market surveillance of television equipment.
The Swedish Agency for Public Management has been tasked with developing the authorities’ efforts to detect and prevent corruption. This is being done via a governmental anti-corruption network, of which SPBA is a member. This network holds four thematic meetings a year, with elements of experience exchange.
Rörlighet i staten – “Mobility in Government” – is a collaboration of 16 authorities. Its aim is to provide development opportunities for government employees and harness the wealth of skills available in government through increased mobility. RIS offers a mentoring programme for new managers. RIS also has several different networks in which SPBA participates actively – involving external relations and human resources issues, for example. There are also opportunities to work for other authorities for shorter or longer periods through RIS so as to exchange expertise and experience.