News Media Europe

PRESS RELEASE: European Parliament report threatens the sustainability of European news media industry

Press releases , March 8, 2017


Brussels, 8 March 2017

European Parliament report threatens the sustainability of European news media industry

Press publishers large and small, represented through News Media Europe, regret the weakening of the European Commission’s proposal for a publishers’ right in the draft report by Comodini Cachia MEP, which was made public today.

News Media Europe finds that while the Commission’s proposal aimed to seek for a balanced approach, benefitting users, authors and publishers of journalistic content, the draft report tilts that balance to the detriment of the publishers. This means that the well-functioning market place for copyright that the European Commission aims for as part of its efforts to establish a Digital Single Market, is at risk.

The European Commission’s Proposal for a Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market (COM(2016)593) includes a provision that would grant press publishers the same rights as other rightsholders in the creative industries, like music and film producers, which allows for a better protection of their content and investments. Comodini’s report takes this publishers’ right out, replacing it by a presumption right which arguably leads to more litigation. The report fails to stimulate the digital market as it doesn’t unlock digital opportunities for press publishers by not granting value to their work. This is regrettable as now, more than ever, there is a need for high quality and independent journalism, which publishers should be able to in sustainable way.

Sarah Davis, Chairman of News Media Europe’s copyright task force, said “This draft report strongly undermines the European Commission’s goal for a well-functioning market place for copyright as it fails to address the current imbalance between internet platforms on the one hand and publishers on the other”.

To remain competitive and independently financed in Europe’s Digital Single Market, press publishers need to compete effectively and profitably on all platforms. This requires clear legal rights that recognize the role of press publishers in the market”, says Wout van Wijk, Executive Director of News Media Europe.

About News Media Europe:

News Media Europe (NME) represents European publishers worth over 12 billion euros and nearly 2200 titles both on printing and digital platforms. NME’s national members include Belgium (Flanders), Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Republic of Ireland, Spain, Sweden, and United Kingdom. News Media Europe is the association of publishers which fully embraces today’s digital revolution – which ultimately represents the future of the press and news media sector.

For further information please contact:

Wout van Wijk, Executive Director,

Francesco Vinci, Policy Advisor,

Tw: @NewsmediaEU