New Delhi, Apr.16 : The Editors Guild of India today complimented the entire Indian media for joining the Guild's initiative in preserving the freedom of the press to cover sporting events, and its decision to resist against unacceptable terms and conditions for accreditation of journalists imposed by Indian Premium League organisers for coverage of IPL tournament beginning on April 18.
In a statement, the Guild noted with satisfaction the news of the removal of IPL conditions that placed severe constraints on news media, and directly affected freedom of editors, newspapers and news agencies.
It said that the IPL's decision to scrap the earlier terms and conditions. which included submission of all photographs taken by accredited photographers to IPL for its global and perpetual commercial use; bar on newspapers from using the pictures in their websites; and bar on news agencies from supplying picutres to their subscribers, had restored the freedom of editors, photographers, newspapers and news agencies. The Guild, however, expressed regret over news agencies being barred from supplying picutres to one set of subscribers, namely standalone specialised websites. It said news agencies should have the total freedom to supply news and pictures to all their subscribers.
The Guild noted that the news agencies are in dialogue with the IPL organisers to remove this clause also from the terms and conditions. Similarly, it also objected to sole telecast rights licence putting new conditions on giving feed to news television channels . These are not acceptable, and the Guild fully supports the stand taken by the News Broadcasters Association.
The Guild reiterates that the existing accreditation policies and rules of the Board of Control for Cricket in India for Test and One Day Matches should be applicable for IPL also, in respect of news agencies, websites and news broadcast channels.
"From the beginning, the Guild had maintained Freedom of Press is non negotiable and firmly believes that the right of coverage of news events cannot come with any conditions which restrain the editor from discharging his duties fully and fairly," it said.
"The Guild reiterates that the remaining unacceptable conditions regarding news websites and news channels too should be withdrawn".