CIPR condemns European Commission's 'Link Tax' proposal

The Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) has strongly criticised a proposal by the European Commission to allow news publishers to claim copyright over links to online news content.

Under the proposal, which forms part of the European Commission's Copyright Directive on the Digital Single Market, online users would require a licence and explicit permission from publishers to share news content.

The remit of the proposal extends beyond search engines and commercial use and could result in publishers being eligible to charge charities and individuals for sharing hyperlinks. The proposal also recommends extending copyright law to cover the snippets of text, which often appear automatically alongside links.

Rob Brown FCIPR, CIPR President, Managing Partner of Rule 5
These proposals inhibit the basic principle of access to information and seek to embark on the near-impossible task of policing the millions of links which are shared across the EU every day. 

In addition to being entirely unenforceable, this legislation looks likely to punish the same group of individuals it seeks to protect. If organisations are deterred from curating news, publishing sites will lose traffic and publishers themselves will incur the greatest losses .

We echo calls from organisations including OpenMedia and the Save the Link campaign calling on MEPs to prevent the link tax becoming law. 
Rob Brown FCIPR, CIPR President, Managing Partner of Rule 5

Last year's State of the Profession research revealed almost two thirds (63%) of practitioners spend most or some of their time on content curation.

Further information on efforts opposing the legilslation can be found on the OpenMedia and Save the Link websites.

Notes to editors

Notes to editors

About the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR)Founded in 1948, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is the Royal Chartered professional body for public relations practitioners in the UK and overseas. The CIPR is the largest membership organisation for PR practitioners outside of North America. By size of turnover and number of individually registered members, we are the leading representative body for the PR profession and industry in Europe.

The CIPR advances professionalism in public relations by making its members accountable to their employers and the public through a code of conduct and searchable public register, setting standards through training, qualifications, awards and the production of best practice and skills guidance, facilitating Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and awarding Chartered Public Relations Practitioner status (Chart.PR).