Denmark: Outlets and Owners

Ida Willig, Mark Ørsten, Rasmus Burkal

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapportBidrag til rapportForskning


Denmark is a small Scandinavian country with around 5.8 million inhabitants covering an area of 42,925 km². Internet penetration is 98% and thus Denmark ranks at the very top among the European countries.

Denmark has a dual media system with a strong private sector owning newspapers and online media and a strong public service tradition with two large public service media, DR and TV 2, which in addition to television have many activities on the internet and, in DR’s case, a dominant position on the radio market. Besides the two public service media, there are a number of private media that do not have the same public service obligations, but are often described as media that produce public service for private money. These media are often wholly or partly owned by foundations and originate from the newspaper market, but are now also important players on other platforms, especially online. The private news brands all receive annual public subsidy, and the media support schemes are comprehensive and distributed in a fair and transparent way. A main characteristic of the Danish media landscape is the government support for Danish media and cultural production which to a large extent is driven by a political will to support and uphold media in the Danish language and media plurality (Kristensen & Blach-Ørsten, 2021; Kammer, 2017).

Trust in news and news media is high with public service news media earing the most trust. Among the 24 European countries covered by the 2022 Reuters Digital News Report, Denmark ranks third highest in the population’s trust in news media. The same ranking is achieved in the question of whether one assesses that the news media are independent from undue political or government influence most of the time. The willingness to pay for news is 18%, which is lower than the other Nordic countries, but higher than most other European countries (Reuters Institute, 2022).

The political system in Denmark – just as the media system – can be characterised as democratic-corporatist with a strong tradition for including corporations and interest groups in policy making processes. The political system is also a stable parliamentary multi-party system characterised by minority governments, but with a strong tradition for political cooperation across the parties. Denmark is a financially strong and stable welfare state based on a progressive tax system and principles of equalisation.
TitelEuromedia Ownership Monitor : Country Report 2022
ForlagThe Euromedia Research Group
StatusUdgivet - 2022

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