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Saturday, January 20, 2018

“Who will pay for criticizing Putin”

A regular meeting of the presidential Council on human rights (HRC) was devoted to the support of the press. The loudest of the presented proposals was to amend the Law on mass media that will equate the publication of periodicals and its distribution to socially important services. Will the President with this idea of his advisors? And the consequences of state support of socially significant mass media? About it “MK” asked the main speaker at the meeting, the member of the HRC Leonid NIKITINSKY.

photo: Natalia Gubernatorova

– Now all say that in the law on mass media no longer need to make any amendments, not to spoil, but the head of the HRC Mikhail Fedotov, the author of this law, was proposed to indicate that the creation and distribution of media is socially significant activity. I agree with that. Without government support now the media can not survive. If we manage to push through this proposal in the fundamental law, then you will need to think ahead: how will the state support this socially meaningful activities? The state media also raises concerns, therefore, there was a proposal to cancel it altogether and let only the strongest will survive and the most interesting to read edition. Some understanding and got it. In other countries, too, there is controversy on this subject, but state support for the media exists, just need to treat journalism not as a maid, as to culture, cultural heritage and part of the political system. In this form it deserves taxpayer support.

But then the question is raised that not all media deserve support. Where a clear criterion that this edition performs a socially useful function, no? Socially relevant content may be present in entertainment media product in the media, which positions itself as serious. In the end, the social utility of the publication will still have to determine manually.

Then there is another question: whose are these arms? A very difficult question. The money will be, obviously, state. So everything should be transparent: the public should see based on what criteria and who are supported by nalogoplatelshiki.

– There is also such a fundamental question. The state and vsakih amendments to the law on mass media supports those publications that he likes. And why would he support anyone else?

– On the one hand, the answer is already embedded in the question. On the other hand, the President has instructed his Council to work on this issue. We had a short argument with him during the Council meeting. said this: “you mean, you criticized the government, and it is given money? You want us to curse at our expense”? I and Nikolay Svanidze replied in one voice: “Yes, we want it so.” Because the most useful role of the media — and there is criticism of the authorities, searching for errors and correcting them. We as a result of years of policy purchase loansthe press was doigralis to the fact that almost no publications on the areas where you can discuss serious problems and reforms. Now crisis, but it turns out that there are no grounds, in which use can be serious issues to raise. The issue of raising the retirement age — a serious, patient, with neohodimo society to discuss and consider it from all sides is simply nowhere. The media, which are now supported by the state, such debates avoid, and then just put the society before the fact. So Putin and asked us to formulate and prepare their proposals for the support of not only state media. Maybe in some form they have taken.

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