Public Sector: Publicity

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 9th February 2023.

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Photo of Michael Fabricant Michael Fabricant Conservative, Lichfield

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will take steps to make it easier for public notices to be published in non print publications; and if she will make a statement.

Photo of Julia Lopez Julia Lopez Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office), The Minister of State, Department for Culture, Media and Sport

Policy responsibility for each specific type of public notice lies with a range of different government departments. The Government is mindful of the potential effect that any changes to the existing publicity requirements for public notices might have on transparency and local democracy, as well as the potential effect on the sustainability of the local news sector as a whole. We recognise the continued importance of print local newspapers to the communities they serve and that there will continue to be a need to reach out to people who cannot digitally access information.

At the same time, to help address the desire for more digitalisation and greater audience reach in the publication of public notices, the local newspaper sector has been working with Google to develop an online Public Notice Portal. The Portal is intended to take advantage of print publishers’ growing digital audiences, providing a centralised resource for all types of public notice. The Government is monitoring the Portal’s development, and the effect that it has on the transparency of public notices.

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