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JCPA Must Include Amendment to Reinvest in Journalists Says Authors Guild

The proposed JCPA legislation should help equal the playing field for news organizations who have lost market share to Internet platforms like Google
Public domain photo by Bank Phrom on Unsplash

The Authors Guild thanks Senators Amy Klobuchar and Mike Lee and the rest of the Senate Judiciary’s Antitrust Subcommittee for yesterday’s hearings on Journalism, Competition and the Effects of Market Power on a Free Press and granting us the opportunity to provide comments on behalf of our 12,000 members, including 3,000 journalists and other professional writers who regularly contribute content to news organizations.

We support the proposed Journalism Competition and Preservation Act provided that the current bill be amended to include language that requires news organizations to reinvest additional revenues obtained because of the JCPA’s antitrust exemption in the people who produce the news. This provision is essential to prevent news companies, especially conglomerates, from posting revenue gains as company profits to line their corporate investors’ pockets instead of supporting the underpaid workers who gather, write, edit, and report news content.

“We believe that legislation such as the JCPA can help level the playing field between the giant internet platforms like Facebook and Google and news producers,” said the Authors Guild CEO Mary Rasenberger. “But providing corporate news organizations with the potential to earn a greater and fairer return on their investment will, by itself, do little to solve the real news drought in this country or ensure a robust, healthy fact-based journalism in the future—unless more workers who report, write, and edit the news get hired, are fairly paid, and more local news outlets are created. That’s why the JCPA must include language to ensure that happens.”

Read the Authors Guild’s Letter