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Media: Are there positive measures for promoting or restrictions for minority and lesser used language in the media?

Key Area:
Public Life, Culture, Sport & Media
Discrimination, Equality
21/12/2011 - 15:20
Short Answer

There are some initiatives in regard to the Slovenian minority in Carinthia. Regarding other national minorities programmes are very marginal and do not fulfil the obligations adequately.

Qualitative Info

Legislation on the Austrian Broadcasting Agency establishes an obligation for the Austrian Broadcasting Agency to provide for an adequate amount programmes in national minority languages. For Carinthia the Austrian Broadcasting Agency has contracted a cooperation agreement with two private broadcasting agencies using their transmission capacities for 8 hours daily radio programme in Slovene. Additionally 1 more hour Slovene and 1 hour bi-lingual radio programmes per week are sent via the ORF owned Radio Kärnten. A daily 55 minute magazine on Radio Kärnten has been cancelled in 2003.

Regarding other national minorities programmes are very marginal and do not fulfil the obligations adequately. The programmes provided in particular do not meet the requirements imposed by the European Council Conventions. In their recommendations for Austria the Committee of Ministers of the EC in 2005 recommended to “increase radio broadcasting in Burgenland-Croatian and Hungarian and television broadcasting in Burgenland-Croatian, Slovene and Hungarian”. Reacting to an audience complaint in summer 2008 the Austrian Broadcasting Agency was tasked to introduce mother-tongue programmes in Vienna and Styria. Furthermore the ORF is reported to plan radio and television broadcasting in Czech and Slovak from the Burgenland. This only just might fulfil the specific legal obligations but would not constitute a functional and forward-looking mother-tongue media supply. The Roma national minority with only 15 minutes of weekly regional radio programme and the Hungarian minority with 5 minutes a day plus 30 minutes a week regional radio programme and 6 yearly 25 minutes television regional magazines are the most disadvantaged groups in terms of mother-tongue broadcasting programmes. Plans to suspend media-wave senders and to reduce transmitting time of the inter-cultural TV programme “Home – foreign home” (Heimat fremde Heimat)” are signals that will contribute more to a deterioration in the near future than to improvements.


Groups affected/interested Ethnic minorities, Linguistic minorities
Type (R/D)
Key socio-economic / Institutional Areas Media
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