Arcom calls for “strengthening of measures” for the independence of editorial staff

Arcom calls for “strengthening of measures” for the independence of editorial staff
Arcom calls for “strengthening of measures” for the independence of editorial staff

“The increased place” of CMA CGM in the media “calls for a strengthening of measures ensuring editorial independence”, estimates Arcom in an impact study on the acquisition of Altice Media (BFMTV, RMC, etc.) by the group of billionaire Rodolphe Saadé, published Wednesday.

Announced in mid-March, the takeover of BFMTV and RMC by the Marseille shipowner must be approved by the Competition Authority and obtain approval from Arcom, the regulatory authority for audiovisual and digital communications.

It is in this context that the regulator, which will hear both parties on June 6, carried out an impact study, he explains in a press release.

According to the study, the operation “is not likely to alter the format” of BFMTV, RMC Découverte, RMC Story, the local channels BFM Régions, nor “the pay channels and radio services published” by Altice Média .

“However, the increased position of CMA CGM in the media field calls for a strengthening of measures ensuring the independence of the editorial staff, particularly with regard to the interests of shareholders,” considers Arcom.

“Formal commitments are expected from the purchaser, which could notably consist of the signing of a charter of editorial independence and ethics concerning the editorial staff,” adds the regulator.

Over the past two years, Franco-Lebanese Rodolphe Saadé has acquired the newspaper La Tribune and the La Provence group (regional dailies La Provence and Corse Matin), in addition to stakes in M6 and the online video media Brut.

In March, journalists from Provence went on strike for 72 hours and denounced “inadmissible editorial interference”, in reaction to the dismissal of the editorial director, after a headline on Emmanuel Macron’s visit to Marseille deemed “ambiguous ” by management.

A few days earlier, Rodolphe Saadé had tried to reassure Altice Media staff representatives about jobs and his desire not to directly interfere in the work of the editorial staff.

Last week, the former boss of M6 Nicolas de Tavernost also joined the CMA CGM group as vice-president of its new holding company CMA Médias.

ac/mch/pta

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