Data Protection Regulation: the European Parliament approves new rules

On Thursday last week, the European Parliament plenary adopted the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It will start to apply two years and three weeks after its publication in the EU Official Journal. The Regulation sets out a completely new framework for the lawful processing of personal data and will impact various activities of magazine publishers.

Throughout the four years of legislative procedure, EMMA highlighted on many occasions that whereas the right to privacy is a fundamental right, other fundamental rights also have to be taken into account. It was, for instance, absolutely essential to maintain an exemption for the processing of personal data for journalistic purposes in the final text in order to preserve press freedom and ensure that journalists and publishers can continue to fulfill their democratic mission without any obstacle. It was also important to work out balanced provisions to, on the one hand, allow individuals to keep control over their data and, on the other hand, make it possible for press publishers to easily interact with their existing and potential readers, and adapt to their changing needs.

The new Regulation will come into force in 2018. Looking ahead, it will be important to ensure that key issues, such as these, continue to be considered whenever decisions are made on the basis of this Regulation. While citizens have legitimate concerns about their privacy, it is important not to forget that other fundamental rights – such as freedom of expression and the right to information, that press publishers both depend on and represent – form the backbone of our democratic societies and, for that reason, deserve careful attention.


For further information contact:

Pierre Dagard 
European Affairs Officer, EMMA

+32 2 536 06 05


The European Magazine Media Association, is the unique and complete representation of Europe’s magazine media, which is today enjoyed by millions of consumers on various platforms, encompassing both paper and digital formats.

The European Newspaper Publishers’ Association (ENPA) is the largest representative body of newspaper publishers across Europe. ENPA advocates for 14 national associations across 14 European countries, and is a principal interlocutor to the EU institutions and a key driver of media policy debates in the European Union.