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Media Coalition, Cricket Australia Agree to Terms

News Media Coalition and Cricket Australia Agree to Terms

The World Association of Newspapers today welcomed the agreement between the international News Media Coalition and Australian Cricket over terms for covering the current season.

"We are delighted that our coalition and the cricket authorities have reached an agreement that will allow news media, both international and local, to cover the matches," said Timothy Balding, CEO of the Paris-based WAN, a member of the Coalition. "This agreement should inspire sports organisations everywhere to reach agreements that take into account our legitimate concerns, before disputes arise. It also demonstrates once more the importance of industry solidarity to protect news access, no matter what the sport."

Cricket Australia was originally seeking payment from news organisations for access to test matches, as well as rights to photos taken at the match. It abandoned both terms and liberalized how news media can publish on digital platforms.

"Cricket Australia and the News Media Coalition, representing the views of newspapers and news agencies worldwide, reached a provisional arrangement which safeguards editorial freedom and allows for coverage to return to normal in time for the second Sri Lanka Test," the coalition said in a statement.

The agreement means that rules for accreditation and access to Cricket Australia events will be amended as follows:

- the new negotiated terms will apply for any Coalition members not yet accredited and will be offered to other news groups who currently have separate arrangements;

- Cricket Australia will conduct an internal review to identify those uses of content owned by news organisations which CA is concerned may cut across its existing commercial arrangements.

The successful outcome, although provisional, follows lengthy discussions aimed at ensuring that there are no fees for journalist attendance nor any arbitrary limitation on news distribution; editors can update their websites more frequently with pictures, text and data; editorial decisions remain in the hands of the editors; and that access arrangements are applied consistently across all news media organisations. Both the Coalition and Cricket Australia agree that this settlement is for this current season only and that discussions should begin imminently to collaborate on issues that have arisen.

The News Media Coalition is pleased to acknowledge the support of a wide variety of news media organisation, including publishers in Australia, in the campaign to defend press freedoms.

The Coalition was formed to defend and protect the rights of publishers and to find a balance with the needs of sports organisers and their partners. It recently completed successful negotiations with the International Rugby Board, which granted greater access to the recent Rugby World Cup and headed off a press boycott of that event.


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