The emblematic case of Hungary, shows how the lack of clear definitions and guidelines for community media can lead to confusion and a non genuine pluralistic media landscape, which should be based on the presence of all, public, commercial and community media broadcasters. In many countries of Central and East Europe, the community media sector is completely inexistent , while in some others restrictions and unclear regulations are limiting its development. Next to the lack of specific laws, there is also a lack of underlying regulations regarding CM. The existence of transparent processes and evaluation criteria to award and manage CM’s access to radio spectrum, for example, varies throughout the EU and while some Member State’s take directly CM into account in their regulatory framework (eg: Slovenia), most media regulators in Central and East Europe have not yet implemented processes to distinguish a CM service from a local commercial media broadcaster.

AMARC meeting in Budapest (12/13 Nov 2012) – Public Policies and Media, and the Future of Community Radio in Central and Eastern Europe

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