Freelancers in Belgium: wages remain precariously low

Freelance fees in the french-speaking Belgium haven’t developed for more than ten years. That reveals the latest inquiry “Les tarifs de la pige”, published on 05 August by our Belgian affiliate Association Générale des Journalistes Professionnels (AJP). The fourth edition of the study shows, some tariffs of freelance-journalists have remained on the same precarious level since it was first raised in 2007 – and some even dropped below. But it doesn’t have to be like that, says Sophie Lejoly, Deputy Secretary General of the AJP. Whether it’s newspapers, magazines, web editions, TV or radio, public or private media – the…

EFJ study on new business models to promote journalism

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) report “Digital Journalism & New Business Models” underpins the trends in new business models for the digital newsroom: from the British Guardian to the pioneering French Mediapart, from Sweden to Spain, we witness the increase in new funding models, in so-called entrepreneurial journalists who take care of both fundraising and the newsroom and still achieve trusted journalism with the highest editorial standards, values that ground the fourth estate in a democratic society in order to hold the powerful to account. The EFJ Digital Expert Group presents its report on “Digital Journalism & New Business…

New copyright directive makes a mockery of journalists’ authors’ rights

After months of speculation, EU institutions last night agreed the wording of a proposed Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market, which risks journalists being deprived of their authors’ rights and denied ‘’proportionate remuneration’’ for the work they do. The new proposal does introduce the principle of an appropriate and proportionate remuneration for all authors, including journalists, place transparency obligations on publishers and open up the possibility of alternative dispute mechanisms which could avoid lengthy and expensive court cases. It also allows authors to be represented by their unions in that process. The International and the European Federations of…

Sweden: Freelance journalists successfully obtain fee rise

The freelance section of the Swedish Union of Journalists (SJ) obtained a fee rise agreement with several big Swedish newspaper publishers. Agreements were reached thanks to a joint effort of individual freelance journalists, the Swedish Freelance Section of the Swedish Union of Journalists, Frilans Riks, and the local trade union branches at the publishing companies. The SJ issued its recommended new fees for freelance journalists last November to come into effect in 2019. Two Morning papers: Sydsvenska Dagbladet and Helsingborgs Dagblad will be implementing a two percent yearly increase, the first raise since a substential raise in 2015. Sweden’s biggest…

Dutch photojournalists on strike for a payrise to counter inflation, falling tariffs and ignored authors’ rights

The Dutch union of journalists Nederlandse Vereniging van Journalisten (NVJ, an EFJ affiliate) and its photojournalist section the NVF announced on 09/01/2019 that they will be going on strike in protest at the erosion of rates of pay. The NVJ/NVF has written to six prominent Dutch media companies calling for talks before January 11th – with strike action set to go ahead on January 25th if talks are unsuccessful. Already over 200 photojournalists have pledged their support for the action. A national monitor of freelance rates shows they fell from €80 a photo in 2014 to an average rate today of €42…

Survey: remuneration for freelances in magazine sector

This December, the German Association of Journalists (DJV) developed an online survey to record the time freelance journalists need for writing their articles in the magazine sector. The collected data will be used to realistically calculate the personal hourly rate for the freelance journalists working in the magazine sector. The survey was closed on  15th December and the results should be available at the beginning of the new year. The data will be then presented anonymously to the publishers with the goal of guaranteeing fair fees for all journalists and finally agree on Joint Remuneration Rules. The European Federation of…

Netherlands: NVJ adopts plan for equal treatment of freelance & staff journalists

On  28th November, the Dutch Association of Journalists (NVJ) agreed on a “working conditions policy plan” aiming to adapt the rates of freelance journalists in line with the employed journalists. NVJ is negotiating with the publishers to guarantee  4 to 4,5 % salary increase to the publishers association. The NVJ has chosen a comprehensive approach in the negotiations with the publishers to guarantee better rights for both employees and freelancers. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) welcomes this decision in times when more and more freelance journalists suffer precarious working conditions throughout Europe. The plan is part of a broader…

EFJ’s Labour Rights Expert Group to launch a charter on journalists’ working conditions

Members of the Labour Rights Experts Group (LAREG) of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) convened in Brussels on 31 October 2018 to discuss the latest improvement and deterioration of labour conditions for journalists and media workers in Europe. Journalists’ unions and professional associations of Germany, Italy, Greece, Switzerland, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia were represented. For the third year, the enlargement of the existing LAREG to participants from the Balkans and Turkey transformed the EFJ’s expert group into LAREG+, bringing together twice a year representatives from both sides of Europe. The pairing is possible thanks to the EU-UNESCO-funded project…

Western Balkans: How to fight self-censorship in public service media newsrooms

On 18 and 19 October in Belgrade, programme directors and editors’ in chief discussed with members of  the EFJ Broadcasting Expert Group how to best implement code of conducts and editorial guidelines for Public Service Media in Western Balkans. The workshop was implemented by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and is part of a two-year project “Technical Assistance to Public Service Media in the Western Balkan” led by the IFJ in cooperation with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). The EFJ trainer Muriel Hanot, Director of the Belgian Press Council, gave a presentation about ethical standards in Belgium including the use…

The Copyright directive must safeguard fair and proportionate remuneration for journalists, warn IFJ/EFJ

In the frame of the EU tripartite negotiations on the Copyright Proposal, the IFJ and the EFJ call on EU institutions to stand up for journalism by safeguarding journalists’ fair and proportionate remuneration from the new neighboring right and strengthening the Proposal’s transparency provisions. Following the approval by the European Parliament on 12th September of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market (DSM) – a major step forward in protecting authors’ rights- EU institutions, namely the Council, the Parliament and the Commission, have now entered into their final phase of negotiations through a trilogue that should last until…

Examining and assessing PSM editorial guidelines of the Western Balkans

A new publication on editorial guidelines or codes of conduct in the public service media of the Western Balkans was drafted by Renate Schroeder, director of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), and presented during a launching event of the EU-funded project “Technical Assistance to Public Service Media in the Western Balkans” in Tirana, Albania, in June 2018. The project is managed by the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) in close cooperation with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), in collaboration with the EFJ, Austrian public broadcaster ORF, the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network and the Office of the Eurovision News Exchange…

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