Thomson Reuters seems to have a new growth strategy that is enraging publishers.
Digital news site MediaNama says it received a presumptuous email from Reuters asking for permission to use and redistribute its content. Content partnerships are perfectly normal.
But Reuters’ email goes on to say that if MediaNama doesn’t respond to the request within 14 days, the silence will be considered consent, at which point Reuters can help itself to whatever articles it wants.
MediaNama‘s editor Nikhil Pahwa published the email request in full, which was written by Thomson Reuters’ head of content acquisition for Europe, Middle East and Africa. Pahwa also published MediNama’s snarky response denying Reuters access to its archives.
Here’s the relevant excerpt o the Reuters email, from MediaNama’s editor Nikhil Pahwa:
We would ask, therefore, that you respond either to the address or email address given below within 14 days of the date at the head of this letter only if you wish to refuse your consent. Otherwise, Thomson Reuters will presume that your consent has been given for the purposes set out in this letter. Performance by Thomson Reuters under this letter will constitute adequate consideration for the purposes of this letter.
“A lack of refusal to consent does not amount to giving consent,” Pahwa writes.
It is unclear if Thomson Reuters only sent the request to MediaNama or if they have sent similar emails to other publications. We’ve reached out to Thomson Reuters for comment. A spokesperson says they’re looking into the situation, and we’ll update when we hear back.
You can reach the entirety of the email over at MediaNama.
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