Ireland’s representative body for national newspapers NewsBrands Ireland is engaged in a number of initiatives during Journalism Matters Week. NewsBrands is highlighting the vital role the press plays in a vibrant democracy – something not to be taken for granted – and calls on the Government to support measures to ensure the industry’s survival.
NewsBrands Ireland chairman Vincent Crowley wants the Government to follow the example of their counterparts in other EU countries and support the industry and the journalism it produces. It can do this by reducing VAT from nine per cent to five per cent. It is currently one of the highest rates in Europe. Ireland’s libel laws need to be changed.
Crowley said that plaintiffs do not have to prove serious reputational harm but juries make awards of up to €10 million. NewsBrands is urging that a minister be appointed with overall responsibility for media. A news publisher media fund is needed to drive innovation and investment. A training support scheme for all journalists is also required.
NewsBrands’ annual journalism awards, sponsored by the National Lottery, are in November.
Vincent Crowley, right, is pictured with National Lottery chief executive Dermot Griffin