Skip to main content

Professor Lionel Bently gives opinion on press publishers’ right


22 May 2018

Professor Lionel Bently has published an opinion on the proposed press publishers’ right for online publications, which follows a previous letter of concerns sent to the UK IPO. In the piece “Sleepwalking towards a perpetual (news?) publishers’ right in online publications”, Professor Bently highlights three issues in recent drafts:

(a) nebulous definitions of subject matter. In particular, Professor Bently highlights how the current definition of “press publication” may potentially extend to scientific and academic publications;

(b) the position of international beneficiaries where currently the right is limited to publications “published by publishers in a Member State”; the opinion notes that this provision in the online environment would mean “nothing”;

(c) the duration of the protection of the right. Current proposals have reduced this right to 1 year (from the initially proposed 20 years), though this may be problematic to ascertain in the online environment.