News Media Europe

Google test shows Article 11 would drive readers to press homepages

Press releases , January 24, 2019

Whilst asking the European Institutions not to waste time before programming a new discussion on the proposed Copyright in the Digital Single Market Directive, press publishers would like to note that Google has intensified its scaremongering about the possible impact of a new neighbouring right for press publishers. They are running a “test” of how they see Google Search might look in the event that press publishers can choose to seek licensing agreements with Google for the reuse of their content. However, unlike normal product testing, where designers would seek to provide the best possible products for their customers, Europe’s publishing organisations EMMA, ENPA, EPC and NME  note that:

  1. Google prefers to provide a bad product rather than ending their freeriding of the work of journalists and publishing houses.
  2. If Google really chose to react like this all over Europe it would lose users to other services, thereby increasing competition. In this case the directive would have achieved a good outcome, providing for more plurality in the market of news search.
  3. In addition, put off by a bad Google experience, users would go more directly to the homepages of the press publishers. This means readers would build a much more direct relationship with publishers – another good side effect of the directive which could also improve advertising revenues of publishers.

Google’s attempts only serve to undermine the benefits of giving publishers an exclusive right to choose how they deal with companies that wish to re-use their content.

A spokesman for the publishers said: “We would like to remind regulators that the objective of this proposal is to enable press publishers to finance professional journalism and promote investment and innovation in our democracy-enhancing independent press.  Every opportunity has been taken by vested interests to prevent this crucial step which attempts to make copyright work on the web. Watering down the proposed Publisher’s Neighbouring Right at this stage would jeopardise the quality of the internet – which is only as useful as the information found on it.  This waivable Right will only achieve the original objective if it covers press content in its entirety, regardless of numbers of words reused. Otherwise, EU regulators will be creating loopholes, demanded by the Right’s opponents, that will render the right completely useless.”

Ilias Konteas– EMMA –

Ilias Konteas – ENPA –

Angela Mills Wade – EPC –

Wout van Wijk – NME –


Note to Editors:

EMMA, the European Magazine Media Association, is the unique and complete representation of Europe’s magazine media, which is today enjoyed by millions of consumers on various platforms. EMMA represents 15,000 publishing houses, publishing 50,000 magazine titles across Europe in print and digital. See: 


ENPA, the European Newspaper Publishers’ Association (ENPA) is the largest representative body of newspaper publishers across Europe. ENPA advocates for 16 national associations across 13 European countries, and is a principal interlocutor to the EU institutions and a key driver of media policy debates in the European Union. See:   


EPC, the European Publishers Council is a high level group of Chairmen and CEOs of leading European media corporations actively involved in multimedia markets spanning newspaper, magazine, book, journal, internet and online database publishers, and radio and TV broadcasting. See:


NME, News Media Europe (NME) represents the progressive news media industry in Europe – over 2200 European titles of newspapers, radio, TV and internet. NME is committed to maintaining and promoting the freedom of the press, to upholding and enhancing the freedom to publish, and to championing the newsbrands which are one of the most vital parts of Europe’s creative industries. See: