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Irish Newspapers Budge Slightly: Now Say Links Don't Require Payment, But Snippets...

from the keep-digging dept

Last year, we wrote about the insane position from the group Newspaper Licensing Ireland (NLI), which represents the major newspapers in Ireland, in demanding that a charity pay them for linking to newspaper stories. In the last few weeks that story has been getting more and more attention in Ireland, in part because a related, but different organization representing mostly the same Irish newspapers, National Newspapers of Ireland (NNI), made a submission to a government review of copyright arguing that linking is infringement if done on any kind of commercial site (so, yeah, they'd probably consider that link to their site infringement).
NNI made a submission to the effect that our view of existing legislation is that the display and transmission of links does constitute an infringement of copyright and our existing copyright law should not be amended in the manner discussed in the Consultation Paper.
Meanwhile, the lawyers representing the charity have noticed that NLI appears to have backtracked ever so slightly and are now saying that "links alone" are not infringement, but if you include any text, you've gone over the line. They've put up a new statement reading, in part:
For commercial use: NLI does not require a licence from any organisation which only displays or transmits links to newspaper content. A licence is required when there is other reproduction of the newspaper content, such as display of PDFs or text extracts.
Of course, whether or not they consider reproducing that text as copyright infringement is left as an exercise for the reader.
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Filed Under: copyright, ireland, links, newspapers, snippets
Companies: national newspaper of ireland, newspaper licensing ireland, nli, nni


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  • identicon
    gEE, 9 Jan 2013 @ 3:23pm

    but without a snippet how do I know I want to goto their site to read an article?????

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Milton Freewater, 9 Jan 2013 @ 3:41pm

    Text extracts

    Quoting a source (spoken OR written) with attribution is part of reporting. It's not copyright infringement in any way. Obviously.

    They can ask for licensing for PDF distribution or wholesale reproduction of a story. But not "text fragments."

    Unless they plan to start suing other print publications for quoting their articles, they will be forced to go back to the drawing board.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      G Thompson (profile), 9 Jan 2013 @ 6:22pm

      Re: Text extracts

      The embedding of ANY PDF files from any world viewable source (ie: not behind an authorisation/paywall system ) is quite legal and not subject to copyright and not subject to any licensing.

      The wholesale production of a story with attribution though at first face subject to copyright/licensing is in actual reality dependant on the context classified as fair dealing/usage as long as there is no commercial gain from such usage and its in public interest.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2013 @ 3:44pm

    strange how linking, which really is free advertising of things, people, sites etc, is now a crime (you get locked up in the UK!) or a means of obtaining money by, yes, you've got it, those that are receiving the free advertising! how bloody selfish is that?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2013 @ 3:54pm

    "Sure, your newspaper can write an article about newsworthy item X which has to do with us. Just make sure you don't use any of the names of people and companies involved, the location, or anything concerning the topic really."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2013 @ 4:29pm

    Ireland is a small country.

    There is damn little that is there that is not somewhere else.

    Why would anyone link to an article in an Irish paper about something that occurred elsewhere especially when the Irish paper lifted the article from elsewhere?

    Which then becomes with this law why would anyone in their right mind link to an Irish or any EU web site as all the EU appears to be equally insane?

    And they wonder why they have 20 to 40% unemployment.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jay (profile), 9 Jan 2013 @ 5:15pm

    If at first you don't succeed, dig deeper.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Edward Padgett, 9 Jan 2013 @ 9:13pm

    Linking to articles

    As a blogger I use links to other sites almost daily and have received no negative feedback to date. Matter of fact I'm often asked to link to certain articles by the writers, which generates traffic to their stories, a plus in today's digital world.

    With advertising revenue moving from the hard copy of the newspaper to the Blogosphere I understand the drowning newspaper will bring anyone linking down with them if allowed to do so.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    shawnhcorey (profile), 10 Jan 2013 @ 7:34am

    Are these guys idiots? The first rule of the internet: you can be ignored in less than 5 seconds.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    spaggie, 10 Jan 2013 @ 8:42am

    easy opt out of snippets

    I've never use it, that'd be stupid

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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