Judge rules for AP in copyright dispute with Meltwater

Over in the United States global news network Associated Press is celebrating a win in its court case against Meltwater News. 

The case began after AP sued Meltwater last year, alleging that AP content was copied and sold by Meltwater for profit to its customers without any fees being paid to AP.  The judge agreed, and on Wednesday ruled in their favour.  A full decision is to be released soon.

Regular readers of this blog will be aware of the NLA’s own dispute with Meltwater in the UK courts and at the Copyright Tribunal.  Other than a narrow technical point around temporary copying, the dispute was resolved in the NLA’s favour.  The appeal on temporary copying had a two day hearing in February 2013 and we are awaiting a final decision.

The NLA has always believed that paid for services using newspaper copyright material need a licence. The UK experience is that users accept licence fees should be paid.  Now it seems the US has reaffirmed the need fairly to remunerate its newspaper industry for use of its intellectual property too.

Andrew Hughes

Commercial Director, NLA

Follow the NLA on Twitter - @NLA_ltd


First Journalism Diversity Fund Intern Begins Placement at Newsquest 

Last month we announced our support for the Journalism Diversity Fund's internship schemes which provide recipients with 1-3 month work experience placements at a regional newspaper. The grant covers both travel and living costs.

We are pleased to announce that the first recipient, 23 year old Khaleda Rahman will begin her three month placement at Newsquest today, providing her with real hands-on experience to help launch her promising career in journalism.

We wish her luck for the months to come!

Click here for the full press release.

David Pugh
Managing Director, NLA

Follow the NLA on Twitter - @NLA_ltd


Charity licensing discount to be extended

We have talked before on this blog about our work with the RNIB and Talking Newspapers, and our donations of over £800,000 to the Journalism Diversity fund. A list of charities supported by NLA publishers can be found here. Another big contribution the NLA makes to the Charity sector is giving discounted or free licenses to over a thousand charities.

Since 2003, following dialogue with the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, the Newspaper Licensing Agency has granted ALL UK charities a financial discount on their copyright licence, worth in excess of £1.5m since inception. To mark the tenth anniversary of the charity discount (and to reflect the NLA's introduction of licences for web-published content) we are pleased to announce an extension to the scheme to incorporate:-
• copying of content from newspaper websites
• republishing of copyright content for publicity purposes on charity websites.

The result is an increase in the financial discount available to charities of all sizes, from the current £150.00 to a maximum of £390.00.

In summary, the extended discount will be:
• financially beneficial to over 1200 licensed UK charities
• smaller charities will see the greatest relative discount
• and over 200 charities (with 5 or less staff) will continue to enjoy a FREE licence.

The NLA licence fees are a small fraction of the value charities get from their coverage and they are distributed in the form of royalties to publishers. NLA fees contribute the equivalent of 800 jobs in the newspaper industry, some in hard pressed regional and local titles. These journalists create the content which provides the publicity the sector thrives on.

We feel this move strikes a good balance; increasing our support for those charities most in need whilst ensuring newspaper publishers reliant upon NLA fees are fairly remunerated by larger charities benefiting from PR exposure in their titles. 

Taz Ahmed ( and Rhea Borland ( – NLA Customer Services


Online licensing for more NLA clients this year

In 2010 the NLA responded to customer feedback and launched an online licence renewal service, enabling businesses to renew their copyright licence simply, securely and efficiently online.

2 years on, this is proving a popular and efficient way for businesses to administer their licence, with nearly 1,000 licensees using the service in 2012.

Licensing online, via is simple to use and provides clients with all the information they need to manage their copyright licence for the forthcoming year – including cover details and licence fees. The NLA’s aim is to remove some of the complexity from our licensing process and provide clients with the facility to select the level of cover they need for their media monitoring needs in a way and at a time that suits them.  We now want to make online licensing  more available.

In the next few months, the service will be extended to a larger group of clients with more extensive media monitoring activity and more involved copyright needs. Clients receiving a press clippings service and sharing relevant content with colleagues, will be able to log in to their NLA account, see their current licence cover and review volume and usage data, to make an informed decision on their licence needs for the forthcoming year.

Clients eligible for the new service will automatically receive an email inviting them to renew their licence online. By clicking on the link provided in the email invitation licensees will be taken directly to their account information and will be guided through the renewal of their licence.  NLA Account managers will be on hand to assist where necessary.

Josh Allcorn

Account Manager, Renewals


Who owns the future? When disruption becomes destruction

Here at the NLA we know from personal experience that the debate around copyright can get bogged down in debates over the minutiae of a particular piece of copyright law – and forget the big picture as to why NLA web licenses are necessary.

Therefore our recommended reading for March is a new book called ‘Who Owns The Future’ by Silicon Valley pioneer Jaron Lanier.   As Lanier points out the digital revolution has brought incredible short term benefits to consumers and wealth to tech entrepreneurs, but there are also huge risks attached.

There is a fine line between disruptive technology which opens up new markets, and destructive technology, which ultimately damages the wider economy.  Respect for copyright, and the NLA’s efforts to seek a fair return for newspaper publishers content are part of the safety net that ensures the internet is to the benefit of all.

For more on this, read the thoughtful review by Evening Standard journalist Andrew Neather.

David Pugh

Managing Director, NLA