UK Govt to examine whether publishers get their ‘fair share’ of online ad revenue

Theresa May has announced a review of the sustainability of Britain’s newspaper industry in the face of falling circulations and online competition for advertising revenue.

In a speech in Manchester yesterday, the Prime Minister described the free press as “one of the foundations on which our democracy is built”, declaring: “It must be preserved.”

She said the closure of hundreds of titles across the UK in recent years was “dangerous for our democracy” because of the risk that voters will turn to “untrustworthy” sources for the information on which to form their views.

The review will examine the operation of digital advertising and look at whether those writing online content are getting a big enough slice of the income from ads.

And it will consider action which the Government or the media industry could take to ensure a financial future for the free press.

May said: “In recent years, especially in local journalism, we’ve seen falling circulations, a hollowing-out of local newsrooms and fears for the future sustainability of high-quality journalism.”

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