Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : UN HRC53 – The role of media in the right to freedom of opinion [July 2023]

The press release issued by the Foreign Office on 4 July 2023.

UK Statement on role of digital & media in promotion & enjoyment of right to freedom of opinion & expression. Due to time constraints, this was not delivered.

Thank you, Mr President,

Digital, media and information literacies are critical tools for empowering users to make the most of what the internet has to offer, including by enabling them to exercise their right to the freedom of expression.

In July 2021, the UK government published its Online Media Literacy Strategy, which seeks to support organisations to undertake media literacy activity in more coordinated, wide-reaching, and high-quality ways. The Strategy identifies six challenges to improving the national media landscape, including: a lack of robust evaluation, engaging hard-to-reach audiences, supporting vulnerable users, and building audiences’ resilience to misinformation and disinformation.

The Strategy sets out a framework of five key principles that should inform the content and delivery of media literacy initiatives in the UK and indicates the outcomes organisations should expect to see through their media literacy activities. This includes ensuring users have the skills to participate positively in online conversations, and that they understand the benefits and risks of interacting with others online.

We have committed to publishing annual Action Plans every year, setting out how we shall meet the Strategy’s ambition. We are also providing almost £2.5million in grant funding, over the previous and current financial years, to 17 projects tackling other challenges set out in the Strategy.

Are the panel aware of any programmes established for the purpose of evaluating the impact of media literacy initiatives, and how these contribute to freedom of expression online?