Truth, Threat or «Treath»?

An essay in a new Scandinavian publication examines the media landscape in Latvia, and in particular the influence of well-funded Russian channels in shaping popular opinion in the country. 

Enigmatically titled Latvian Media Policy Responses To The Foreign Information Treath (sic), the report by Roberts Putnins, who is an official at the Latvian Ministry of Culture says:

Many Latvians, particularly those of the older generation, have a good knowledge of Russian and are comparatively happy to consume Russian state television products. These programs offer traditional entertainment with a large dose of post-Soviet nostalgia. The entertainment content is intertwined with conspiracy theories; the news is convincingly presented, yet riddled with lies and hate speech; political shows are saturated with nationalist superiority. The Latvian national authorities must find solutions to protect the social order and resist these hostile external influences.

The only proper method in the fight against hazards in the national information space is establishing an active media policy focused on strengthening the local information area and facilitating media pluralism, Putnins concludes before outlining how the government intends to achieve that goal.

Citing "historical-political context" he says there is "no need to further justify the lack of public and political support for the creation of a new Russian media platform [in Latvia]."  

You can read the full report HERE.

The essay is part of a new book Citizens in a Mediated World discussing the meaning  of modern citizenship in a globalized digital media culture and how Media and Information Literacy (MIL) can contribute to promoting the rights of children and young people. 

The book presents the discussion and conclusions from a conference on Media and Information Literacy arranged in liaison  with UNESCO’s World Press Freedom Day in Helsinki, in May 2016.

 

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