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Workshop Media - Cuba Solidarity in Europe

Draft and Components work group Media Policy

Preliminary Note

Media are always involved in publicity and communication. While the traditional mass media such as print media, radio and television were affected by a more or less one-sided communication with the target to inform and to clarify with an effect on public opinion, they were also a corrective tool towards politics, economics and administration. Due to the technical circumstances, their production and distribution was mainly reserved to professional journalists and organizations/institutions.  

Independence and objective media coverage were in the foreground. The freedom of press has been documented in the constitutions of most civic states and thus also in the German Constitution (Federal Republic of Germany). With the upcoming new media such as Internet and Web 2.0, that situation has changed a lot.

Meanwhile, anybody can publish information and the communication work bidirectional, which means in two directions from the writer to the reader and backwards. Both functions are also taken over by the two actors. The technical innovations fell together with the worldwide neoliberal intersection of the whole socity. Everything is just valued for its economic worth. Media are organized in affiliated groups and subject to the principles of market and accumulation of profit. It is not the interest in education and information which is the most important function of media, but the increase in shares. Media have become an economic power and as such they more and more define politics. Independent media are rare and exist in niches only.

Target

Recognition and analyzing of the war of media against Cuba and the interests behind it in order to develop common activities within Europe and interfere in the media blockade against Cuba, thus increasing the media presence of Cuba with regard to content such as health, social rights, ecology, etc.

Recognize which kind of media are to be used at a certain point and how they can be effectively applied.

Find ways to overcome language barriers in order to realize publicity work and activities (Linkage of our webpage’s, exchange of press information, etc.)

Organization

Input presentation of about 20 minutes in the plenum by Kristine Karch, followed by 3 Workshop Sessions of 90 minutes each.

Concept/Contents

2 blocks mit the subjects:  

  • Media: the provider of keywords in politics

  • Internet and Social Media – a countervailing power ?

Input to: Media – the provider of keywords in politics

  • Media today are penetrated by neo-liberalism

  • (not information but profit is the centre of interest)

  • Structures of power of the media today / predominant interests

    (there are only very few media groups acting worldwide, rather any more investigative journalism. Advertising (financers) directly and indirectly define the content.

  • Value of information
    half-life period, reliability, authenticity, canard, etc. 

Input to: Internet and Social Media – a countervailing power?

  • Roll of Internet / Social media

  • Structures of power/interests and power relationship in Web 2.0

  • Difference between unidirectional and bidirectional communication

  • Interaction, ways of participation

  • Actors/Consumers

  • Investors/Advertising

Method

For each block an introduction by the ICAP (max 10 minutes) such as 5 set reports by the groups of max. 5 minutes each (see proposals below). After that free discussion.

In any case there must be room for input by the participating groups and I am still open for proposals.

We should directly address the individual groups to get their input.

About subject: Media: Provider of keywords for politics

  • Presentation by ICAP about the available Cuban Press Information, official statements and Internet pages (if possible also by handout). Official statements and internet pages. It should serve as a basis for our work so that we can quickly access information, official statements, etc. – the roll of web 2.0 is to be discussed in the next block.
  • Own print media – which groups do have some (i.e. Jörg Rückmann, Cuba Si, Friendship Association Austria-Cuba and others).
  • Experiences with press work. Press declarations, press conferences (print media) - (maybe HCH about Fiesta Moncada or example CITMA round trip or contribution of UK )
  • National media, local media
  • Local radio / civil radio (Carmen Gesin, Freiburg?), Local broadcasting
  • TV, local broadcasting

Alltogehter I do not know that much about it so we should check with the groups in advance who can contribute to this subject.

About subject: Internet and Social Media – a countervailing power?

  • Euskadi-Cuba, Basque Country for cubainformation.tv

  • ACS, Switzerland for website in four languages

  • Netzwerk Cuba Austria for their blog – with comments

  • Spain - Tiempo de Cuba

  • Amerika21.de as external example.

Moderation should be carried out by two persons if possible from the country of the referees/speakers.

Output / activity proposals from the work group

Stronger cooperation and networking of the European Groups in their media and information work. We should not just react, but also ACT. We must just concentrate on the new media but also reach people via traditional channels.

With regard to the contents, we should not just perceive Cuba through travel reports but mainly with contents – a positive example is the trip of Maria Cristina and the extensive coverage of the trip about itself an about Cuba in the shadow view. www.netzwerk-cuba.de/rundreise-2012-citma-expertin.html) or the press work of HCD for this years Fiesta Moncada in Bochum (siehe www.netzwerk-cuba-nachrichten.de/wir-uber-uns/fiestas-2012-um-den-26-juli/).

This is a collection of ideas that should be discussed before the meeting within the groups. There should be a differentiation of what we can do all together and what the local groups do in their respective regions.

Subjects could be: Miami5, Ecology, Democracy, Social Rights, Justice, Women, Health, Education, Water and residual water, Millennium Targets, disarmament.

  • Revival of the European Website: http://www.cuba-solidaridad-europa.org/?

  • Exchange of press declarations, statements, etc. ?

  • Mutual counter campaign ?

  • Use of Internet / RSS-Feeds / Facebook / Twitter?

  • Use of film, TV, radio (traditional and internet).

  • Use of Granma International in the different language editions

  • http://www.cubainformacion.tv/?

  • Survey / Correction of wikipedia and others ?

Preparation of work group

Harald Neuber, Kristine Karch

Further approach / Schedule

After coordination of the concept with the ICAP publication on our website with request for Feedback and participation (moderation, short inputs, proposals for referees).