Regulatory authorities

Law No. 249/1997 created an independent authority, AGCOM, to oversee the entire communications sector - print press, television, radio and new media. AGCOM is a collegial body of eight members, including a president (appointed by the both Presidents of Parliament), a council of eight members (elected by parliament), and two committees (one for networks and infrastructures, another for services and products). Again, Italy’s partisan media system is reflected in the composition of AGCOM members, which usually reflect the political make-up of Parliament.

The composition of another regulatory body, the Commissione Parlamentare per l’Indirizzo e la Vigilanza sui Servizi Radiotelevisivi (Parliamentary Committee for the Orientation and the Control over Broadcasting), follows similar patterns. This body is in charge of issuing orientations for RAI activities, as well as overseeing its control. The Commissione Parlamentare di Vigilanza proves to be particularly important during election campaigns, as it has the power to provide strict directions on how to cover the campaign, limiting the autonomous, editorial choices of journalists.