German court finds for freelances
THE German journalists' unions, the DJV and dju, recently took the Rheinische Redaktionsgemeinschaft, a part of DuMont Schauberg Mediagroup to court over contracts the company trying to impose. The company wanted to exclude application of the common remuneration rules for freelances.
The District Court of Cologne ruled this clause illegal. In general, house agreements and the national agreement on minimum terms and conditions established under the German law governing authors' rights contracts (Urhebervertragsrecht) must apply to freelances.
German colleagues describe this as a tiny victory, notable mostly for the fact that the company is headed by the President and the Honorary President of the German Newspaper Publishers' Association.
In the UK we dream of such tiny victories...