Should Bloggers get Accreditation to EU Institutions?

My Press Badge and Blogger Name Badge from Th!nk1

M van den Broeke on Twitter asked this question,

Should serious EU bloggers get some sort of accreditation to EU institutions? But on what criteria?

Firstly I say fair play to her for bringing up the question. Its one that should be asked more, and not just by the EU. I must say Irish political parties have been good at facilitating bloggers, so maybe other institutions should start soon?

But back to the question at hand. As pointed out by Charlemange of the Economist and Jean Quatremer of Liberation (French) the press corp in Brussels is shrinking. There are now only 752 journalists with accreditation compared with 1,300 back in 2005.

Newspapers depend more now on wire-content for EU stories and they consistently make mistakes ( eg, Saying the ECHR is part of the EU!!!) Can bloggers bridge the gap?

Much of the original content about the EU is now written by bloggers. Simply because there is not enough journalists to cover everything the EU does. But of course bloggers have a number of hold backs, day jobs, time, and money. But some bloggers are excellent specialists at subjects and having accreditation may allow them to build on their expertise and get more informed stories out there.

But how do you define a serious EU Blogger?

  • Is it someone who only follows EU Politics?
  • Is it someone who the majority of their content is about the EU?
  • Is it someone who knows a lot about the EU?
  • Is it someone who lives in Brussels?
  • Should be limited to someone with a high number of visits?

That is the hard part of deciding whether of not bloggers should be accredited.

Personally I think they should be. But who should be left into the Brussels bubble is the question?

Should a separate list be maintained for those bloggers outside of Brussels?

Its time we had this conversation.

What do you think?

Hattip to Julien Frisch for the topic

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Author: Stephen

Cork born and bred, proud European and Irishman. Involved in many organisations and politics. Also writes for SpirtualityIreland.org and UCC Express.

5 thoughts on “Should Bloggers get Accreditation to EU Institutions?”

  1. Really good question. And I agree bloggers should be allowed into the institutions. Mostly because these people are passionate about what they’re writing about and their information, thus, is much more precise most of the time than that of journalist(as you pointed out saying ECHR is a part of EU or calling von Rumpoy the President of the EU). It would be very tough to maintain a list though, because you’ll always hear cries of someone being discriminated against by not being included on the list.
    I’d say the blogger would have to be established and write about the EU for at least a year. Then he could apply to be included in a list for visits to EU institution. As you can see even this sounds a bit too vague 🙂
    .-= Mario´s last blog ..Lets EUnite! =-.

    1. Mario,

      You are right about the passion! and you can see it how they write as they do criticise! Your idea about a year blogging is an interesting one, but then it discriminates against someone starting out? Its a hard one!

      1. I agree. It is a tough one, but we do need something that would allow for some sort of security into the system. An all out entry would mean anyone could write a few blogs about EU and then gain access to the institutions.
        Another way could be to actually set up a sort of an accreditation committee to which you would apply and they would deal with an application on a case by case basis. However then there can be fears of someone who is overtly critical of the EU not getting the pass in.
        The last thing that comes to my mind would be having some sort of EU Blogger organisation which bloggers could join and all the bloggers from the organisation would be allowed in.

  2. Honestly, the question already irritated me on Twitter, and the discussion around it begins to upset me. Here is why:

    I have always disagreed with the attitude of institutions that fulfill a public and democratic function to require any kind of accreditation. I am a citizen of the European Union, and the EU organs and institutions are accountable for their work. Why is there a power leverage introduced that allows the institution to judge whether or not I am eligible to ask, research, question?

    I think all requirements — invitations, accreditations — for blogging journalists or journalistic bloggers should be waved and there should just be one single question asked:

    What do you want to do and find out while you are here?

    Then there should be a citizen support team and office, to which I am invited and directed, where knowledgeable people will help me to research and find people, documents, studies, decisions, stories — any kind of material that might help me to find my answer.

    And it should be of no concern whatsoever to the institution what I do with this information — whether I blog or write, speak or sing about it. It’s none of their f***ing business.

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