Digitalisation has delivered the impetus for the evolving media landscape, and this also has an impact on society. Internet-based communication and convergent media channels are increasingly blurring the boundaries between distribution channels, media forms and terminal devices - a development that offers many opportunities and harbours multiple risks. In addition to the regulation of technical issues and content, preventive work is also necessary. Young people and adults alike need to be enlightened, educated and provided with support for using the wide range of opportunities. This is also a legal mandate for which the Media Authority of North Rhine-Westphalia is responsible.
On the one hand this includes the promotion of media literacy: People of all ages should be able to participate self-determinedly, critically and creatively in all manifestations of the modern media world. The depth of commitment in this area extends across education at pre-school, school age and adult level. The Media Authority of North Rhine-Westphalia furthermore supports the various forms of community media. It coordinates and promotes projects ranging from community radio and television through to university radio stations and also organises competitions and prize presentations. In addition to promoting knowledge transfer and 'do-it-yourself' media, media research is also part of the often interrelated fields of activity. In this respect, the The Media Authority of North Rhine-Westphalia initiates and commissions scientific studies relating to current and future media developments.
The purpose of the Diversity and Participation Foundation, established by the Media Authority of North Rhine-Westphalia in 2014, is to support local and regional journalism in North Rhine-Westphalia, which is also facing massive upheaval. The remit of the Foundation is to make recommendations and create incentives in this area. Providing support for digitalisation is also a role which the Media Authority of North Rhine-Westphalia undertakes. The Authority is involved in an informative capacity with the 'NRW digital' project initiative and uses printed and video publications to highlight the opportunities offered by - and the risks associated with - new forms of digital media.