Pursuant to its statutory tasks, API has negotiated rules concerning the relationship between the Brussels press corp and the European institutions.
Here you can read / download a codification of the rules for the appropriate use of the Press Room of the European Parliament. You are most welcome to report to us cases of abuse or to invoke the respect of these rules in your daily professional life.
Rules concerning the appropriate use of the European Parliament Press Room agreed with API and endorsed by a decision of the Bureau of the European Parliament:
RULES GOVERNING THE PROPER USE OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT'S PRESS ROOM(BUREAU DECISION OF 22 OCTOBER 2007)
- Members who organise a press conference shall be responsible for ensuring that it runs smoothly and they must attend it in person.
- Press conferences shall be public. Seats in the Press Room which are equipped with headphones for interpretation shall be reserved first and foremost for journalists. Other persons may attend but they may neither speak nor ask questions. Nor must they disturb the journalists' work.
- Only those persons seated at the press-conference table may speak.
- Only journalists shall be authorised to ask questions, but before doing so they must state their name and the press body for which they work.
- The press-conference organisers shall not put questions to the journalists and they shall not hold a roll-call of those present.
- Press conferences are not political gatherings, hence those present shall ensure that they do not express (in the form of applause or protests or by any other means) their approval or dissapproval of the speakers and/or the points of view which they voice.
- A press-conference presentation (statements by the organising Member and by his or her guests) should not take up more than half of the total duration of the press-conference, so that journalists have an opportunity to ask questions.
- Parliament staff shall as far as possible ensure that no more than two press conferences take place consecutively. This applies in particular when part-session briefings are being held by the leaders of political groups, in order to allow the journalists time to write or dictate their articles. A fifteen-minute break after two press conferences is desirable.
- These rules shall be displayed at the entrance to the Parliament's Press Room in order that all users, members of the general public, MEPs and MEPs' guests may acquaint themselves and abide by them.
(The original copy can also be downloaded here in both English & French)
RULES GOVERNING RECORDINGS BY MEDIA REPRESENTATIVES ON THE PREMISES OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT
(BUREAU DECISION OF 7 SEPTEMBER 2015)
THE BUREAU OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, having regard to Rule 25(2) of the European Parliament's Rules of Procedure, HAS ADOPTED THIS DECISION:
Article 1: Definitions
- For the purpose of these Rules, 'recordings' shall mean all forms of sound and/or image recording within the European Parliament’s premises, carried out by media representatives.
- For the purpose of these Rules, 'media representative' shall mean any person employed or self-employed in the field of media.
Article 2: General principles
- Media accreditation is granted to media representatives for the purpose of parliamentary and political reporting and explanation of parliamentary and political activities.
- Instructions received from the European Parliament’s Directorate for Media (hereinafter ‘Directorate for Media’) and/or any Security official must be strictly observed. The European Parliament reserves the right to modify or withdraw the facilities provided for the media within its premises at any moment.
- Recordings by media representatives are not permitted during the recess period of the European Parliament and when no parliamentary activities take place in the buildings in Brussels/Strasbourg, except with a specific permission from the Directorate for Media.
- The use of hidden cameras and/or hidden sound recording equipment is prohibited.
Article 3: Requirements
- Media representatives shall be in possession of valid media accreditation, issued whether by the European Parliament or the Interinstitutional Accreditation Committee.
- In addition to paragraph 1, media representatives shall also be in possession of a recording permit for their activities, issued by the Directorate for Media, in order to be entitled to carry out any kind of recording in the European Parliament.
Article 4: Acceptance of these Rules
- Media representatives requesting a recording permit to the Directorate for Media shall be supplied with a copy of these Rules and shall fill in the form of Annex I undertaking to comply with them.
- Without prejudice to paragraph 1, when media representatives accept media accreditation, they are presumed to implicitly undertake to comply with these Rules in the European Parliament.
Article 5: Areas where recording is permitted and applicable conditions
1. Except if specific security measures are in place, recording is permitted in the following areas and subject to the following conditions:
In the Chamber:
During part-sessions, film camera and sound recording operators and photographers are allowed access to the press gallery overlooking the Chamber.
The use of flashes or extra lights is prohibited in the gallery.
In other areas:
- in all press conferences and press points;
- in meeting rooms, with the prior authorisation of the chair of the meeting;
- in the public spaces around meeting rooms;
- in Members’ offices, with the prior authorisation of the Member concerned and in his or her presence;
- in the access areas of meeting rooms (lobbies), the area around the Chamber and inter-building passageways;
- in the Parlamentarium.
2. Members inviting media representatives to their offices may complete the form of Annex II to request a specific recording permit for the team.
3. For recording in areas not listed in paragraph 1 and excluding those areas where recording is strictly prohibited under Article 6, special authorisation may be sought by sending a request to the Directorate for Media.
Article 6: Areas where recordings are prohibited at all times
Recordings are strictly prohibited:
- in all restaurants and bars;
- in areas where security equipment is installed, in particular at the entrances to Parliament’s buildings;
- in all areas and offices reserved for the parliamentary services, including car parks, administrative offices and spaces, and all areas to which access is restricted;
- in commercial areas, including shops and banks;
- in areas where it is clearly indicated by signs that recordings are prohibited.
Article 7: Respect for dignity, privacy and integrity of property
Media representatives shall have due regard to the dignity and privacy of all individuals present inside the buildings, as well as to the integrity of Parliament's property and equipment.
Article 8: Individual permissions
- Members may decline an interview request or end an interview at any time. Media representatives shall respect any such decision.
- Addressing staff members with recording equipment running without their prior permission is prohibited.
Article 9: Breaches of these Rules
- When a breach of these Rules by a media representative is established by the Directorate for Media, the recording permit and the media accreditation of the person concerned granted by the Directorate for Media become automatically and immediately void.
- In addition, future applications for accreditation and/or a recording permit by that person or by the media organisation that person represents may be refused for a period of up to one year, according to the severity of the breach. The Director for Media, acting under the authority of the Quaestor responsible, shall take the appropriate measures.
Article 10: Withdrawal of interinstitutional accreditation
Any proposal to withdraw on a permanent basis an interinstitutional accreditation shall follow the procedure laid down in the rules for interinstitutional accreditation agreed by the Parliament, the Council, the Commission and the International Press Association.
Article 11: Appeal
Media representatives may appeal against the establishment of a breach of these Rules by the Directorate for Media to the Quaestors of the European Parliament within one month from the date of notice of establishment of the breach.
Article 12: Repeal
These Rules replace the Rules governing photographers and television crews inside the buildings of the European Parliament in Brussels and Strasbourg, adopted by the Bureau on 7 September 2005.
Article 13: Entry into force
This decision shall enter into force on 15 October 2015.
Annexes: Click to download
Annex I - Form for media representatives to explicitly undertake to comply with these Rules
Annex II - Form for Members to request access for media representatives to their office