The role of media to protect cultural identity and diversity
The state creates the conditions, at multiple levels, that guarantee the freedom and quality of the media, the public’s access to it, and diversity of opinion. In Germany, responsibility for media affairs lies principally with the Länder. The Federal Government, however, has legislative powers in specific areas such as telecommunications and copyright. The “Federal Government Report on Media and Communications” (2008) summarizes the Germany’s federal media policy.
Broadcast media, including radio, serve to protect cultural identity as well as diversity and freedom of opinion. The Interstate Broadcasting Agreement of the Länder requires that both private and public broadcasting companies represent diversity through informational, cultural and educational programming. Public broadcasting companies have a particular responsibility for safeguarding cultural identity and cultural memory. Cultural and educational programming is a mainstay of public broadcasters. Statutory rules governing broadcasting and tele-media must be developed further in light of the new digital possibilities and in accordance with EU guidelines.