PR agencies which fail to buy a licence for copying press cuttings
will face legal action, warns the Newspaper Licensing Authority.
In a letter to John Lavelle, executive director of the IPR, the NLA’s
chief executive Anthony Rentoul said the NLA may ’make examples by
bringing proceedings, not necessarily limited to civil proceedings,
against recalcitrant corporate infringers and their directors.’
But Rentoul also said that PR companies do have special permission to
’provide copies for their clients as well as for their own internal
Rentoul called on the IPR to ’urge its members working for unlicensed
employers to ensure that those employers rehabilitate themselves’.
Rentoul’s letter comes after a meeting last week between the NLA and IPR
which failed to resolve their differences on the issue. The IPR has
taken legal advice, and disputes the NLA’s right to force PR agencies
unconditionally to buy licences to copy press cuttings.
Quentin Rappoport, chairman of the IPR working party, said: ’Our advice
to members stays the same - they should keep their options open.’
Rappoport said the IPR would consider taking the matter to the Copyright
Tribunal, but that he would be reluctant to go down the route to a legal
The NLA has so far issued licences to 72 PR consultancies, and 1,300
companies in total.