Role of public media for ethnic minorities discussed in border city

Nova Gorica, 19 May - A conference on cross-border public service broadcasting held in Nova Gorica on Friday called for better cooperation in producing media content in the border area, in particular between the Italian public broadcaster RAI's regional centre for Friuli Venezia Giulia and RTV Slovenija's regional centre in the coastal city of Koper.

Trieste, Italy
A RAI centre in Trieste.
Photo: Kaja Šoštarec/STA
File photo

The conference was hosted by trade unions at RAI and attended by State Secretary Vesna Humar from the Office for Slovenians Abroad in Ljubljana.

While noting there is a lot of support for media broadcasting in border regions, she cautioned against immediately discussing cutting regional programmes when Slovenia's public broadcaster RTV considers streamlining.

Turning to the situation on the Italian side of the border, she urged continuing efforts to ensure that the funds the Italian government invests in RAI's regional centres have a greater impact on the production of content in Slovenian and also Friulian.

She also addressed the issue of hate speech in the media, saying that "the fight against hate speech and manipulative content is particularly important in precious and fragile border areas. We must be aware that quality journalism is the immune system of public dialogue. We need to support it, including financially, so that it does not get weak."

The conference produced proposals on how to upgrade the production of RAI's regional centre for Friuli Venezia Giulia in terms of technology and content, and on how to link it even more closely with RTV Centre Koper-Capodistria, RTV Slovenija's regional centre in Koper.

The conference also discussed the cancellation of Radio Trieste A at medium wave lengths and the need to establish a digital audio network in Friuli Venezia Giulia.

The conclusions of the conference will be sent to the Italian government, the Office for Slovenians Abroad said in a press release.

The office provides financial assistance to the Slovenian minority's print, radio and online media outlets in Slovenia's neighbours while also supporting media projects in Slovenia that cover the ethnic minority's activities.

The positions of the Slovenian minority in Italy were presented at the conference by the leaders of two umbrella organisations, Ksenija Dobrila from the Slovenian Cultural and Economic Asociation and Walter Bandelj from the Council of Slovenian Organisations.

© STA, 2023