Press publishers join forces to safeguard democratic values in Europe by making the case for a strong European copyright
Brussels – 27 September 2016. “Empower Democracy” (www.empower-democracy.eu), officially launched today, is a cross-border alliance initiated by Europe’s press publishers to raise awareness about the crucial democratic role of the press, the need for a free, independent, pluralistic and vibrant press sector in Europe is acknowledged in the ongoing copyright reform.
Europe's media landscape is unique in its diversity. “We have to recognise the fundamental conditions for media pluralism and freedom and to defend them, also taking responsibility for the new framework in this area: regulatory and non-regulatory. We need trustworthy media.” says MEP Michal Boni.
“It is crucial that the contribution made by press publishers to media diversity, freedom of speech and European pluralism must be properly valued” says Mark Dekan, CEO of Ringier Axel Springer publishing newspapers and magazines online and print in Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and Serbia. “A strong media sector needs a strong legal framework: a Europe-wide publisher's right. With such a right, press publishers will be able to defend their intellectual property against unauthorised use, thereby protecting the value of their work. We call upon the European Parliament and the European governments to fully support this important regulatory initiative that was presented almost 2 weeks ago!”
The website www.empower-democracy.eu underlines the importance of the publisher’s right in helping
to maintain independent, pluralistic media in Europe.
By introducing a publisher’s right, publishers would be given the right to legally protect what is theirs, which would help to address some of the key challenges that publishers are facing in a digitized media world. Publishers would then effectively be treated the same way as other content producers like broadcasters, film producers, and phonogram producers.
“Press publishers are essential to the European economy and are subject to worldwide competition” states Xavier Bouckaert, CEO of Roularta Media in Belgium. “In recent years we have heavily invested in digital business models and innovation. By constantly improving the ways of communicating content to our readers, we shape and frame our digital environment – and pave the way for a future European digital single market. For Europe to become a strong player in the digital sphere, we need a clear regulatory framework to foster growth and unlock Europe’s creative potential.”
In the name of the initiators of the alliance Carlo Perrone, President of ENPA and Italian publisher explains: “The Commission’s proposal represents an historical and significant step by providing a right for press publishers at EU level. This right neither creates a tax on links nor prevents the sharing of links between individual users. It will enable press publishers across Europe to value and protect their editorial content in the digital environment which would highly benefit media pluralism, press freedom and cultural diversity.”
The website www.empower-democracy.eu was introduced to the public on the 27th of September 2016 during a “Future Media Lounge” debate on the press freedom situation in Europe in the European Parliament.
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Max von Abendroth
Executive Director, EMMA
Deputy Executive Director, ENPA Sophie.Scrive@enpa.eu
Angela Mills Wade
Executive Director, EPC Angela.Mills-Wade@epceurope.eu
Wout van Wijk
Executive Director, NME firstname.lastname@example.org
Press publishers in Europe respond to public consultation on reduced VAT rates for electronically supplied publications
Brussels, 20 September 2016 – ENPA - the European Newspaper Publishers’ Association - and EMMA - the European Magazine Media Association – have responded to the public consultation launched by the European Commission on reduced VAT rates for electronically supplied publications.
This public consultation paves the way for the Commission’s upcoming proposal which would allow Member States to apply the same zero, super reduced or reduced VAT rates applicable for printed newspapers and magazines also to the digital environment. In its reply to the public consultation, ENPA and EMMA have reiterated the urgent need for such a legislative change in the VAT legislation.
On 6th May 2015, European Commission President Juncker made a speech at the BDZV congress in Brussels in which he declared support for a reduction of VAT on digital press and stated that the Commission would come forward with a proposal. This intention has been recently confirmed by Commissioner Moscovici which highlighted the Commission’s plan to present a proposal by the end of 2016 allowing Member States to lower VAT rates for the press in the digital environment.
In their joint submission, ENPA and EMMA have highlighted the positive economic benefit of such a change for the sustainability of press publishing companies and for responding to readers’ increasing demand for professional journalistic content and innovative services in the digital environment. Publishers would be able to keep a high level of investment in editorial content whilst maintaining the lowest possible price for readers.
Finally, the press publishing sector in Europe plays a key-role in education and literacy at a time when our society, especially the young generation, are increasingly reading news on all digital platforms. Reducing VAT on the digital press would improve accessibility to pluralistic and diverse press content, which is crucial for safeguarding Europe’s democratic values, media pluralism and cultural diversity.
Deputy Executive Director
ENPA - European Newspaper Publishers’ Association
Rue de Namur, 73A
B-1000, Brussels, Belgium
Tel.: +32 (0)2 551 0197
Fax: +32 (0)2 551 01 99
Joy de LOOZ-CORSWAREM
European Affairs Manager
EMMA – European Magazine Media Association
Rue de Namur, 73A
B-1000, Brussels, Belgium
Tel: +32 2 536 06 08
Brussels, 14 September 2016 - Newspaper and magazine publishers welcome the European Commission’s proposal for publishing rights
Europe’s leading Newspaper and Magazine Publishers’ Associations EMMA, ENPA, EPC and NME welcome today’s proposal by the European Commission to recognize publishers as rightholders in EU copyright law.
"The introduction of a publisher’s right at EU-level is a necessary and historically important step in guaranteeing media pluralism as an essential basis for freedom of opinion and democracy in the digital world," declared the publishers’ organizations today in Brussels. The Commission’s proposal takes into account the unsatisfactory situation whereby the high-quality content produced by press publishers contributes to the success of many online platforms that do not make a significant contribution to the content, while publishers do not benefit from an appropriate share of the value produced.
The Commission is correct in its assessment that, without adequate legal protection at EU level, the sustainability of publishing industries may be at stake with the risk of further negative consequences on media pluralism, democratic debate and quality of information.
On a daily basis, European newspaper and magazine publishers produce thousands of articles which, in the age of the internet, can be partly or fully copied, recycled and marketed by third parties within just a few seconds. Press publishers have long underlined the importance of being able to get a return on their investment in professional journalism, in particular in the context of third parties’ commercial use of their products, in order to continue their important role of providing information, entertainment and opinion in our democratic society. This has been recognised by the Commission in its proposal today, which provides protection for press publications and recognises the important role of press publishers. This step is long overdue, as all other sectors of the creative industries except for the publishing sector currently enjoy their own rights. It was time to close this loophole in order to provide legal certainty for press publications in the digital world.
To achieve this goal, it is important that the proposal is not subsequently weakened, and that it includes all the necessary rights to meaningfully enable press publishers to market their products. It is equally important to sustainably secure press publishers’ share of fair compensation for uses of the work made under limitations or exceptions, without being burdensome.
What remains certain is that the publisher’s right will have no impact on the freedom of the internet, in particular on linking. All regular copyright exceptions, such as those relating to quoting, illustration, research and private copying, etc. will still apply.
Download the ENPA, EMMA, EPC and NME coalition press briefing here
Download the full press release here
For more information visit www.publishersright.eu
The proposal of the EU-Commission is available here
On behalf of:
ENPA – European Newspaper Publishers Association
Sophie.Scrive@enpa.eu & Carolin.Wehrhahn@enpa.eu
EPC - European Publishers Council
Angela.Mills-Wade@epceurope.eu & Ann.Becker@epceurope.eu
EMMA – European Magazine Media Association
NME – News Media Europe
ENPA and EMMA moved to new office
ENPA has moved jointly with EMMA to a new office in Rue de Namur 73 A, 1000 Brussels.
We are happy to welcome you in our new premises!
PRESS FREEDOM CONFERENCE (R)EVOLUTION OF EUROPE’S PRESS HIGHLIGHTS KEY THREATS TO EUROPEAN PRESS
On 1 July 2016, media experts and stakeholders from throughout Europe joined together in Wroclaw, Poland, to participate in the press freedom conference ®evolution of Europe’s Press, organized by ENPA together with EMMA and an alliance of other press and journalism associations.
The conference saw a host of interesting events and speeches, focusing on the role of the media in in modern democracy, and current challenges and threats to Europe’s media. Participants were involved in developing a range of suggestions to overcome such challenges, such as a revision of privacy or antiterrorism laws to avoid arbitrary interpretation from national judiciaries causing risks to media freedom. The promising ideas formulated at this event will continue on as part of the Future Media Lab dialogues. The next important event to note is the upcoming Future Media Lounge session in September, at the European Parliament in Brussels. (Details to follow). You can find more information about the press freedom conference here.
On the 27-29 June, the 2nd UNESCO European Media and Information Literacy Forum took place in Riga, at the National Library of Latvia. Ms. Elodie Depré, media literacy project manager and communication officer at LAPRESSE.be, spoke on behalf of ENPA on ‘bridging concept and practice: mediators of MIL at the Local Level (The Role of Libraries and Media Networks as Mediators in Promoting MIL (The Case of Latvia) and Other Target Groups (Parents, Teachers, Industries).
The session covered important questions related to how the potential of the different actors could be reached in strengthening media and information literacy, how the different actors could best synergize their efforts to help children in achieving media and information literacy, and how to link in other important concepts such as gender equality in media and information literacy.
More information can be found at unesco.org.
On 6 June 2016 an ENPA delegation of press publishers from across Europe met with the European Commission Vice-President Andrus Ansip to discuss the challenges and opportunities faced by the news media sector in the digital single market, with a particular focus on copyright, VAT and the AVMS Directive.
Delegation from right to left: Tomáš Kamenec from Petit Press Publishing House in Slovakia, ENPA Vice President Valdo Lehari jr., Publisher of Reutlinger General-Angzeiger in Germany, Sophie Scrive, ENPA Deputy Executive Director, ENPA President Carlo Perrone, Vice President of Italiana Editrice S.p.A. (ITEDI), Andre Veskimeister, Member of the Management Board of Ekspress Grupp in Estonia, Vice-President Andrus Ansip, François Le Hodey, CEO of IPM Group (La Libre Belgique), ENPA Vice President Bruno Pachent, Directeur Exécutif de Média Sud Europe in France, Carolin Wehrhahn, Head of BDZV Brussels Office
Adequate legal protection is needed to ensure the diversity of the press and the future of quality Journalism in Europe
The European Commission has launched a consultation on publishers’ rights on 23 March 2016. This provides an important opportunity for the Commission, ahead of legislative proposals for EU copyright reform, to properly assess the copyright-related challenges faced by the publishing community in the digital era, what is at stake and the appropriate way to address these issues at EU level.
The consultation is much welcomed by the publishing community, as it provides the opportunity to acknowledge the value of the press to society and the digital economy, and to set the record straight on the challenges posed in the digital environment and how to best address them at EU level.
The hope is that it could ultimately lead to much-needed adequate legal protection of publishers in the EU copyright framework, in particular by clarifying at EU level that publishers, like the other content producers (broadcasters, film producers, phonogram producers], are listed as rightholders in EU copyright law.
For further information please visit www.publishersright.eu