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06-06-2019 09:25

Address by the Director of the PIO, Ms Sophie Michaelides, at the annual conference of the European Media Management Association

Welcome to our island, which, even though still occupied and divided, gives about 530 million results on Google. 530 million results showing the island’s rich mythological and cultural heritage and history. A history of more than ten thousand years which manifests the civilization, hardship, struggle, rebirth, change, adaptation and creativity of the island and its people.

Our Cyprus, which is in the middle of everything. Literally. Being strategically located at the crossroads of Europe, Africa and Asia, but also being the last divided country in Europe, makes us take the world map seriously. Cyprus has excellent economic, diplomatic and cultural links to all countries, nations and people around this troubled area, and so we can provide excellent geographical connectivity and a political cooperation bridge to different civilizations and neighboring countries.

Our Cyprus. A unique business destination due to its

  • exceptional quality of human capital,
  • modern and transparent legal and tax framework,
  • the recently restructured banking sector,
  • the country's location
  • and its excellent professional services and skilled labour force.

For this country and these people, my team at the Press and information Office work in order to provide informed and media-savvy Communication Services to the state and creative and innovative Information Services to its people by means of interpersonal, non-verbal, audiovisual, written and oral communication.

The PIO, just like you, operates by juggling different types of media, competitive communication strategies, marketing models, corporate responsibility, intellectual property law, and more.

And, just like you, we organize and supervise teams of media professionals, various mass communication channels and technologies, media and entertainment productions. We, also like you, make use of organization skills, marketing strategies, media economic understanding, and the knowledge of different software tools utilized in media productions. 

This said, but also given the media's potential for reaching the broadest audiences and shaping the political agenda, it is not surprising that the media are often described as the fourth branch of Government.

Especially today that the internet has acquired a crucial role in the media landscape and the sheer scale of online sources has turned us all into content curators while presenting us with new challenges regarding the findability but also credibility and quality of information.

The younger generations report social media as their main source of news, followed closely by online news sites. Young people use these channels more that tv news and printed newspapers put together.

It is because of this, that regulating media ownership and the unprecedented consolidation that have swept the sector, and putting in place ownership and finance transparency rules to prevent undue influence by political and economic interests, are as important as ever.

In connection to this, the role of media regulatory authorities needs to also be empowered for the digital age. They must have appropriate managerial competencies and resources to act in full independence and autonomy.

I believe that all media stakeholders should share guidelines on the goals and means of achieving diversity of sources and information, assuring their visibility across different platforms and exposing them to the widest possible audience.

Ladies and gentlemen,

We, the Press and Information Office of the Republic of Cyprus, are like you, an important and essential part of the chain where the Political, Media, Communication, Information and Technology industries come together with society and create efficient networks of cooperation. We have progressed from handling digital communication to communicating in today’s completely digital environment. We operate in a media environment where speed is essential, since a tweet or a post can steal or create the headlines, or even, God forbid, start a war.  

And since no one can keep the dialogue going, between the “message creation industry” and the “receiving end”, ALONE, let’s all work together, and work carefully, in Media Management, or in managing the Media.

Welcome to Cyprus. Enjoy and remember our island.