Organized by the Council for Electronic Media (CEM), the first International Conference of Media Regulators of the countries of the Balkan region was held in Sofia from November 23 to 25. The forum was attended by representatives from Albania, Greece, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Turkey and invited speakers from Italy, Catalonia (Spain) and Moldova.
The conference was opened by the chairman of CEM, Mrs. Sonya Momchilova, where the history, specifics and activities of the Bulgarian regulator were presented.
In the panel "Artificial intelligence in regulation - advantages and risks", the possibilities of combating misinformation and hate speech with the help of technology, the possibilities of artificial intelligence in the fight against hate speech and ethical aspects were discussed.
While in the panel "Disinformation and media literacy - problems and solutions" is the panel moderated by Prolet Velkova, member of CEM, in which the projects of BNT - "MeGra" (Nadia Obretenova) and BNR - Factcheck (Nikolai Petrov) were presented, as an opportunity to countering fake news from public media. Prof. Gheorghe Plios, a member of the Greek regulatory body, Jeton Mehmeti from Kosovo and Emilia Yanevska from North Macedonia also spoke about countering misinformation and the experience of working to increase media literacy in presentations.
In the third panel "Regional regulation features and contemporary challenges" two particularly important topics were discussed. In the first, "Challenges for the media regulator in the conditions of a military conflict in the vicinity of the country" as well as the implementation of the ban on gambling advertisements in countries that have banned this activity.
During the forum, the participants exchanged valuable opinions and experiences and confirmed their desire to work for the promotion and convergence of relations and cooperation between the countries of the Balkan region, on topics and processes related to challenges to media regulation, which the dynamics of modern processes determine.
The participants united around the idea of continuing their cooperation in the future, where the conference in Sofia opened the ground for further, regular meetings. A media platform will support the exchange of information, signals and good practices.