The Council of the European Union gave its green light to its new Copyright Directive on April 15.

The directive will make online platforms liable for illegal posting of copyright-protected material onto their platforms. It will also make Google, Facebook and other outfits pay publishers for copyrighted material they post.

The directive was backed by 19 countries. Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Italy, Finland and Luxembourg voted no. Belgium, Estonia and Slovenia abstained.

“With today's agreement, we are making copyright rules fit for the digital age,” said European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. “Europe will now have clear rules that guarantee fair remuneration for creators, strong rights for users and responsibility for platforms. When it comes to completing Europe's digital single market, the copyright reform is the missing piece of the puzzle.”

“The new Directive will boost high-quality journalism in the EU and offer better protection for European authors and performers,” said an EU press release on the measure. “Users will benefit from the new rules, which will allow them to upload copyright protected content on platforms legally. Moreover, they will benefit from enhanced safeguards linked to the freedom of expression when they upload videos that contain rights holders' content, i.e. in memes or parodies,” it said.

The European Parliament voted on the measure in March.EU member states will have 24 months to transpose the directive into their national legislation.

2019 Pulitzer Prizes announced

The 2019 Pulitzer Prize winners in 14 journalism and seven letters, drama and music categories were announced on April 15.

The winners in journalism are the South Florida Sun Sentinel for Public Service; the staff of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for Breaking News Reporting; Matt Hamilton, Harriet Ryan and Paul Pringle of the Los Angeles Times for Investigative Reporting; David Barstow, Susanne Craig and Russ Buettner of The New York Times for Explanatory Reporting; staff of The Advocate, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, for Local Reporting; staff of The Wall Street Journal for National Reporting; Maggie Michael, Maad al-Zikry and Nariman El-Mofty of Associated Press for International Reporting; staff of Reuters, with notable contributions from Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo for International Reporting; Hannah Dreier of ProPublica for Feature Writing; Tony Messenger of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch for Commentary; Carlos Lozada of The Washington Post for Criticism; Brent Staples of The New York Times for Editorial Writing; Darrin Bell, freelancer, for Editorial Cartooning; photography staff of Reuters for Breaking News Photography; and Lorenzo Tugnoli of The Washington Post for Feature Photography.

A special citation was also given to honor the journalists, staff and editorial board of the Capital Gazette, of Annapolis, Maryland, for their courageous response to the largest killing of journalists in U.S. history in their newsroom on June 28, 2018.

UsPs to deliver indiana’s Times-Union

The Times-Union (Warsaw, Indiana) is now partnering with the United States Postal Service for delivery of its newspapers.

The new delivery was set to begin on April 18.

The move will not affect the timeliness of the news, the paper says. The paper has gone to an a.m. publishing schedule, with press runs at midnight instead of noon.

“Given the current landscape of the newspaper industry, the move affords us significant savings in distribution costs,” the paper says. “We want to thank our many newspaper carriers, who over the years have toiled so loyally for us,” the paper said.

High-Key Enterprises publishes the paper.

drupa report: Global print industry stable

The 6th drupa Global Trends Report, available at www.drupa.com, says the global print industry is in stable condition overall.

Globally 40 percent of printers stated their company economic condition was “good” in 2018 compared to 13 percent who described their condition as “poor.” The rest rated it as “satisfactory.” This results in a positive net balance of 27 percent. For suppliers the positive net balance was 19 percent. Both groups remain optimistic, with 50 percent expecting better conditions in 2019, according to a news release on the report.

North America continued to enjoy strong growth in 2018, Europe and Australia had steady growth, while Asia, the Middle East and South and Central America were cautious and Africa was in decline, the release said.

The packaging market thrives as does functional, but there are clear signs of increasing caution in the commercial market and publishing remains subdued, with the encouraging exception of the books market, the release said.

Conventional print volumes continue to decline but slowly, according to the release. In 2013, 23 percent of printers reported that digital print was more than 25 percent of turnover. In 2018, the proportion of printers had increased to 29 percent. Nevertheless, sheetfed offset remains the most common form of print technology, present in 66 percent of all printers. Sheetfed offset volume continues to grow in packaging but there was a clear decline among commercial printers for the first time.

The results are from the sixth annual survey conducted by Printfuture (U.K.) and Wissler & Partner (Switzerland) in autumn 2018. Over 700 printers and 200 suppliers (senior managers who visited or exhibited at drupa 2016) participated, with all regions represented.

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