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Action Plan against Disinformation

EESC section opinion: Action Plan against Disinformation

Composition of the study group

Administrator: Alessandro RIZZI

Assistant: Nadezhda SERTOVA

Foreseen for the TEN Section meeting: 5 March 2019
Foreseen for the EESC Plenary session: 20-21 March 2019

Gist of the Commission document

Disinformation is a major challenge for European democracies and societies. It undermines the trust of citizens in democracy and democratic institutions and contributes to the polarisation of public views. Addressing disinformation requires political determination and unified action, mobilising all parts of governments.

The Action Plan sets out key actions to tackle disinformation in a coordinated approach of the Union institutions and the Member States. The coordinated response to disinformation is based on four pillars:

(i) improving the capabilities of Union institutions to detect, analyse and expose disinformation;

(ii) strengthening coordinated and joint responses to disinformation;

(iii) mobilising private sector to tackle disinformation;

(iv) raising awareness and improving societal resilience.

The Action Plan also highlights measures to be taken as a matter of priority by different actors ahead of the 2019 European Parliament elections. Such measures also include:

  • establishing a Rapid Alert System for addressing disinformation campaigns;
  • organising targeted campaigns for the public and trainings for media and public opinion shapers in the Union and its neighbourhood;
  • supporting the creation of teams of multi-disciplinary independent fact-checkers and researchers with specific knowledge of local information environments;
  • reinforcing the mandate of Strategic Communication Task Forces.