The Danish Government has presented its proposal for a new media policy agreement. Reduced funding for the current public service institutions, more money to public service production outside DR (Denmark’s main public service company), and a closedown of the FM radio networks are some of the proposals.
In Denmark the framework for media policy is established in political media agreements (in Danish), which are based on agreements between the government and one or more parties in the Folketing (Parliament). The new agreement will cover the period 2019-2023, including a mid-term assessment.
The proposal entails, among other things, an increase in the public service fund, which allocates financing to public service production outside DR, from 35 to 220 million Danish kroner annually. The money may be used for the production of audiovisual content regardless of platform, and a portion of the money is earmarked for content for children and young people.
At the same time, the funding for DR, Denmark’s main public service broadcaster, is to be reduced by 20 per cent. DR must also cut its number of TV channels from six to four at the most, and increase collaboration with private media, including a common app with content directed at children and young people. Furthermore, the government wishes to sell 40 per cent of TV2, Denmark’s second state-owned public service broadcaster, and expand the TV output by issuing a concession for a new cultural channel.
In the radio field, the government wishes to enhance the transition to digital radio and therefore close down the FM network when 50 per cent of listening takes place on digital platforms, but by 2021 at the latest. The allocations to Radio24syv, Denmark’s privately owned public service channel, will be reduced by 33 per cent; instead, the channel will be allowed to sell advertising. At the same time, radio output will be expanded with a new DAB radio channel focusing on culture and classical music.
Other suggestions include increased support to new media initiatives in both digital and printed form, VAT exemption for digital news media, and a new fund for local newspapers in order to strengthen local and regional news distribution.
The cut in DR’s financing is part of a previous agreement from March between the government and Dansk Folkeparti, which also included a decision to replace the license fee with tax financing. The other media policy proposals are to be negotiated between the government and other parties.
June 28, 2018: The Danish media agreement is set
The Danish Government and Dansk Folkeparti have agreed on a new media agreement for the period 2019-2023. Read more in Danish