Brussels, 8 December 2020
Journalists and press publishers are concerned by the e-Evidence proposal
The European Federation of Journalists together with EMMA, the European Magazine Media Association and ENPA, the European Newspaper Publishers’ Association, acknowledge yesterday’s vote in the European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) on the Report for a Regulation on European Production and Preservation Orders for electronic information in criminal proceedings (E-Evidence Regulation). Despite the efforts by the European Parliament to address several issues contained in the European Commission’s proposal, we regret that some key amendments have been rejected. As a result, the adopted report falls short of the necessary procedural safeguards to protect press and media freedom.
This is especially worrying as the report only represents the European Parliament’s negotiating position in the forthcoming trilogue negotiations with the European Commission and the Council. Considering the three negotiating positions on the table, EMMA, ENPA and EFJ do not see any possibility for a final compromise which would not further water down the insufficient safeguards introduced by the European Parliament.
If the EU wants to protect press and media freedom and not undermine its key pillars such as editorial secrecy and protection of sources, so-called “direct cooperation” proposals in cross-border law enforcement must include the necessary procedural safeguards. Press and media freedom can only be ensured if each order is assessed and approved by the executing authority before any data transfer can be issued. At the very least, the minimal procedural safeguards on the involvement of the executing authority as introduced by the European Parliament cannot be subject to further compromises in trilogue.
We invite all parties in the upcoming trilogue negotiations to take our concerns into account in order to ensure adequate protection for press and media freedom.
For further information, please contact:
Ilias Konteas - EMMA-ENPA Executive Director // Ilias.Konteas@magazinemedia.eu
Renate Schroeder – EFJ Director // email@example.com
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, encompassing both paper and digital formats. EMMA represents 15,000 publishing houses, publishing 50,000 magazine titles across Europe in print and digital. See: www.magazinemedia.eu/
ENPA, the European Newspaper Publishers’ Association 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: www.enpa.eu/