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November 2021

Das Ende der Öffentlichkeit?

Does the common public still exist? Lisa Merten discusses this with experts from research and media practice at an event organised by the Grimme Academy at the University of Cologne.
About the Event
With the introduction of private television channels in the 1990s, critics observed a development according to which an all-German public that experienced a media event together was dissolving, as was the case, for example, with the broadcasting of Francis Durbridge detective stories ("Straßenfeger") or the programme "Wetten dass". Today, it is often claimed that this fragmentation of the public sphere is massively accelerating - and that new media, especially social networks and messengers, are driving this development. New populist movements are taking advantage of the completely new reach of Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
Public discourse, on the other hand, is losing its binding force. Trust in journalism, the state and science is declining. How it can be regained is one of the topics of this panel. Part of the discussion will also focus on the need for development of legal regulations, insofar as these are still based on the fiction of a common public sphere in society as a whole.
  • Lisa Merten, Leibniz Institute for Media Research/Hans-Bredow-Institut, Research on News Usage in Social Media, Hamburg
  • Dr. Leonard Novy, Institute for Media and Information Policy, Cologne
  • Prof. Dr. Marlis Prinzing, freelance journalist, moderator and researcher, professor at the Macromedia University of Applied Sciences, Cologne.
  • Prof. Dr. Stephan Packard, media cultural scientist at the University of Cologne, Research on Propaganda, Surveillance and Censorship, Cologne
  • Aycha Riffi, Director Grimme Academy, Marl

Dr. Michael Köhler will be the moderator. Due to the space available, no audience members can be admitted to this event, but it will be made accessible to the public through the radio broadcast on WDR 3 and will also be available as a podcast afterwards.

Infos zur Veranstaltung


Universitäts- und Stadtbibliothek Köln
Universitätsstraße 33
50931 Köln

Contact person

Dr. Lisa Merten
Postdoc Researcher Media Use & Digital Communication

Dr. Lisa Merten

Leibniz-Institut für Medienforschung │ Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI)
Rothenbaumchaussee 36
20148 Hamburg
Tel. +49 (0)40 45 02 17 87

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