European press publishers’ associations take note of the Commission proposal for an updated Audiovisual Media Services (AVMS) Directive Offering more advertising in primetime TV will negatively impact the financing of newspapers and magazines.

European press publishers’ associations take note of the Commission proposal for an updated Audiovisual Media Services (AVMS) Directive Offering more advertising in primetime TV will negatively impact the financing of newspapers and magazines.

Today, the European Commission has presented a legislative proposal reviewing the current AVMS Directive. This proposal aims, amongst other things, at giving more flexibility in the area of commercial communications, in particular as regards to the rules TV broadcasters have to follow. The proposal also foresees a limited extension of the scope of the Directive to video-sharing platforms without editorial responsibility.

First of all, EMMA and ENPA welcome the fact that, according to the proposal, the scope of the AVMS Directive in principle seems to remain limited to services whose principal purpose is the provision of audiovisual programmes. By doing so, the European Commission seems to ensure that editorial videos that do not form the principal purpose of editorial content – which would include the numerous digital press offers – do not fall under the scope of the Directive.

Videos, which merely complement publishers’ written editorial content cannot be regulated the same way as audiovisual media services. These videos are nevertheless regulated as editorial media and information society services, while respecting press freedom, one of the EU’s fundamental values.”

However, the reference in the proposal to stand-alone parts of online newspapers featuring audiovisual programmes or user-generated videos where those parts can be considered dissociable from their main activity, remains questionable and could impact editorial independence and press freedom.

Secondly, ENPA and EMMA are strongly concerned about the proposal to replace the current quantitative limitation of 12 minutes per hour in TV advertising by a 20% daily limit. The existing limitation is not only in place for consumer protection purposes but also because it allows for a more balanced advertising market where a plurality of media can co-exist successfully.

Whereas the current hourly limit remains relevant and should not be given up, the Commission’s proposal will offer more advertising opportunities in particular during TV primetime. This flexibility will make the financing of newspapers and magazines more difficult, especially as regards investment in professional journalistic content but also as regards employment.”


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, encompassing both paper and digital formats.

The European Newspaper Publishers’ Association (ENPA) is the largest representative body of newspaper publishers across Europe. ENPA advocates for 14 national associations across 14 European countries, and is a principal interlocutor to the EU institutions and a key driver of media policy debates in the European Union.