Press law, case IV KK 174/07

March 31st, 2008, Tomasz Rychlicki

The Supreme Court in its order of 27 July 2007 case file IV KK 0174/07 held that publishing news within Internet website which was available under domain name, is the deemed as equivalent to press publishing. They were charged by the Prosecutor for publishing the press without registration which was the breach of the provisions of Article 45 of the Polish Act of 26 January 1984 on Press law – APL – (in Polish: ustawa Prawo prasowe), published in Journal of Laws (Dziennik Ustaw) No. 5, item 24, with subsequent amendments.

Anybody who publishes a daily newspaper or a periodical without registration or with registration suspended is subject to a fine penalty or the restriction of liberty.

All periodicals and newspapers must be registered at a local court and the registration form must contain: title of the publication, address of the editorial office, personal data of the editor-in-chief, the name and address of the publisher and frequency of publication. The Supreme Court stated that it is undisputed that the newspapers and magazines by the fact that they appear in the form of Internet transmission do not lose their characteristic of the press title, both when online communication is accompanied by the transfer of messages established on paper, printed, being their different electronic form which is available online and when the message exists only in electronic form on the Internet, but appears periodically, meeting the requirements referred to in Article 7(2) of the APL.

A daily is a general-information periodical print or a message transmitted via sound or sound and image published more frequently than once a week.

The Supreme Court once again stressed that the precondition for the recognition of mass media as the press, resulting from technical progress, depends on the periodic dissemination of publications and communications periodicals distributed via the Internet may take the form of newspapers or magazines, depending on the interval of appearance.

See also “Press law, case II K 367/08“.