Today Lithuanian business daily “Verslo žinios” presents a topic about ongoing discussion whereas public funds (the latest case – Ministry of Agriculture) should be used for advertorials.
From my perspective, we have clearly draw a line between several issues:
- Advertorials are ultima ratio, i.e. it is the tool to be used in the last case. In general advertorials have the lowest efficiency/price ratio, therefore they should be used, when other measures fail, still public institution must inform public;
- The more institution uses advertorials, the less they are effective
- Advertorials paid by public institutions should have several characteristics:
- Advertorials have a long-term negative effect and corrupt media channels. Media channels become laisy to report various issues, which are presented in advertorials. Such situation becomes uncontrollable – media looses attention, institution is eager to get at least some of it – buys advertorial, media interest is discouraged even more;
- I have to ascertain, that I don’t even speak about such situations, when public funds are used to directly advertise specific politician, his/her person. That’s an example of traditional corruption and conflict of interests.
More improtantly, this is equally important for EU structural funding – we have a lot of useless advertorials financed by EU funds.