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NLA media access celebrates 20th anniversary

This year NLA media access celebrates 20 years of supporting journalism. To mark the occasion we’ll be launching a range of initiatives and hosting a series of events throughout 2016.

Since our launch in 1996 we have grown to become a leading provider of content and services for publishers and media monitoring organisations. By ensuring publishers receive a fair return when their content is used for commercial purposes, we support the equivalent of 1,300 jobs in journalism.

So much has changed in our first 20 years, especially with the growth of digital communications. When we started, ‘clippings’ were press packs distributed daily or weekly on paper, clipped and copied from printed editions. Now, newspaper and magazine content may come from web or tablet editions and are nearly always delivered to screens. NLA media access contributed to that monitoring revolution with the development of the eClips database, which takes print and web content directly from publishers and supplies media monitoring agencies and their clients.  Tens of thousands of business users now have access to eClips content every day.

Although the media landscape has changed dramatically, there are some things the NLA has stood for throughout. We pride ourselves on delivering efficient service to all our customers, and we never, ever, stand still. As we enter our 20th year, we are now working with more publishers and content users than ever before, serving 256 publishers, 5,000 print and digital publications and nearly 10,000 corporate licensing clients.

Trends in globalisation have driven innovation too. Our leading role as members of the Press Database Licensing Network and IFRRO– networks which encourage sharing of content and copying rights – has brought real benefits, allowing users access to thousands of international news sources by brokering direct agreements between publishers, media monitoring organisations (MMOs) and users across the globe. Today, we have 22 rights exchange agreements covering 19 countries and supply 31 international media monitoring agencies, giving UK licence holders rights to copy many thousands of overseas newspapers including major titles such as Le Monde, the International New York Times and the Chicago Tribune.

NLA media access has always ensured that supporting journalism is at the heart of our work. The money we return to publishers helps fund quality journalism. But we also go further, by encouraging entry to the profession. Over the last ten years, the NLA has supported the work of the Journalism Diversity Fund (JDF) with sponsorship exceeding £1m to create a route for aspiring journalists from diverse backgrounds make newsrooms representative of the communities they report on. Over 200 journalists have received JDF support to go on and work across the industry, from the Daily Mail to Sky News. We look forward to continuing our work together in the future, and supporting the next generation of journalists break the defining stories of the future.

During my 8-year tenure as Managing Director, I have enjoyed the unfailing support and guidance of the NLA board and staff. Together, we have increased the number of publishers and clients that we serve, used the skills of our dedicated licensing team to develop new client solutions and invested in the eClips database to launch innovative services for monitoring clients and publishers. As I hand over to Henry Jones later this month, I am confident that the NLA will continue to expand and offer services in new areas, providing ever more opportunities for publishers to realise the value of their content in the media monitoring market.

For more information about the NLA’s 20th anniversary, including special features and photos, visit www.nlamediaaccess.com or follow #NLA20 @nla_ltd.