We are a publisher owned private company founded in 1996 by the UK national newspapers to protect the industry’s copyright.
Today, we give permission for organisations to copy from an extensive range of newspapers, magazines and websites and in addition provide database services to both media monitoring agencies and publishers.
Eighty per cent of our revenue is returned to our publishers to be invested back into the industry.
Our role is to make the process of gaining copyright approval from individual publishers easier. Our licences act as an insurance policy that protects organisations from breaching copyright. They also provide assurance that publishers are being rewarded for their work and effort.
As a collective management organisation, we are owned by the UK national newspapers, and collect royalties on behalf of all the publishers we represent under the Copyright and Designs Patent Act 1988, we are widely referenced on government website pages, for example here: https://www.gov.uk/newspaper-licensing-agency-business-licence.
The basic rule is that any organisation that wishes to copy a published work will need permission from the copyright owner.
If your organisation reproduces, either in print or digitally, articles and shares these internally or externally, it is likely infringing copyright if it does not possess a licence.
The Copyright Designs & Patents Act 1988 gives publishers the legal right to protect their intellectual property - the online and print content in which they invest money and time. The basic rule is, with a few minor exceptions, if an organisation wants to make a copy of a published work it will need permission from the copyright owner. In the case of newspapers, this is granted by individual publisher permission or a NLA issued licence.
So what is copying?
Put simply, copying can be anything from photocopying articles to scanning and emailing them to colleagues or clients as well as hosting articles on your shared drive or intranet for others to view or, externally, on your corporate website and Facebook pages.
This also includes printing out or emailing on articles you receive from your PR or media monitoring agency.
If you are a single user and never copy or share any cutting supplied by your media monitoring agency and only read online coverage on the desktop to which it was sent, then you are right. But if you have multiple users on your service and/or copy or share just one article or forward online coverage to just one colleague, you will need a NLA media access licence.
If your PR agency has specifically informed us that they wish to cover you on their licence, they can supply you with cuttings and links and you are covered for copyright. But if you copy or circulate these, then you will need a NLA media access licence.
The Copyright Tribunal, and the Appeal Court, recently ruled that publishers do own the copyright to online content. Newspapers invest millions in their online operations, creating original content that does not appear in print, and need to be recompensed for their efforts.
Every organisation, from not-for-profit to listed companies, needs a licence if they copy and share newspaper content. However, NLA media access offers a range of licences to suit every need. We understand concerns about funds so we offer a discount to all registered charities, providing a cost efficient solution to meet your requirements.
This will be subject to the nature of the agreement that your client has with the publisher. The client can retain the copyright or assign it to the publisher.
Actually, you might not be. Google and Yahoo! have direct relationships with the publishers, although recently News International, owner of The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sun, has stopped making its online content available to preserve the value of its copyright.
However, organisations that systematically distribute links provided by news services such as Google and Yahoo, either internally or externally, require permission from the publishers or a NLA media access licence if they do not already have one.
Organisations are allowed to post links, but not the headlines or text, on their intranets without the need for a licence. But if just one colleague prints that article, you will require a NLA media access licence because a copy has been made.
NLA media access, working on behalf of publishers, will only proceed to court as a last resort. We will always try to resolve matters involving unlicensed copying behind the scenes. Each of our licences also include an indemnity charge for first time users, that covers unlicensed copying for up to six years – which is legally as far back as we can go.
On two occasions, however, we have brought civil actions against organisations for infringement of both typographical arrangement copyright and literary copyright.
Our eClips database of newspaper articles is a timely and efficient system for media monitoring agencies to produce press cuttings for their clients.
The service, in which we invested £20 million, takes articles directly from newspapers’ production systems and makes them available to media monitoring agencies as XML for local indexing, search and evaluation work. Clients of media monitoring agencies can access their relevant clippings as PDF files hosted by NLA media access.
More than 30 media monitoring agencies use the service, which produces more up-to-date and relevant cuttings and has removed the need to scan articles, which was both time consuming and inefficient as scans deteriorate over time.
Organisations can only access eClips through their media monitoring agencies. We offer a MyArchive feature that allows organisations to retain access to digital cuttings for one year.
Our eClips Web database of website content allows media monitoring agencies and news aggregators to deliver articles to clients within ten minutes of their appearance online.
It has also improved the service they offer clients by providing more accurate article classification and reliable coverage.
It includes access to material from publications, including The Times and Sunday Times, Premium content from The Telegraph and the Financial Times that are behind a paywall. The database, which cost more than £20 million to create, takes direct feeds from newspaper content management systems.
Organisations can only access eClips Web through their media monitoring agencies.
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