Publishing certificates

Private individuals, companies, organisations and authorities can apply to us for certificates of no legal impediment to publication (publishing certificates) for their databases. A publishing certificate is valid for ten years and can then be renewed. The publishing certificate provides the same constitutional protection of freedom of expression as mass media companies have for their online publications.

How to apply for a publishing certificate

You apply for a publishing certificate to us. When submitting your application, you must also pay an application fee.

Assessment

  • When receiving an application for a publishing certificate, we make an assessment of whether the database fulfils the requirements for constitutional protection.
  • What is published, its purpose, and who is behind the publication has no bearing on our assessment of whether or not a publishing certificate can be issued.

Why do I need a publishing certificate?

Your database does not automatically have constitutional protection
If your website or database is not covered by the automatic constitutional protection, the publishing certificate will provide an equivalent cover. But a mass media company can also apply for a publishing certificate.  

The publishing certificate provides 10 years' protection
The publishing certificate is valid for 10 years, and can then be renewed after your application. 

You are operating a digital cinema
If you are operating a digital cinema, but not as a mass media company, you need a publishing certificate for the film screenings to have constitutional protection. Digital cinema means the public screening of a film, where the film is not played from traditional reels, but in a digital format from a server (database) or similar. 

Conditions for a publishing certificate

A publishing certificate can only be obtained if the database is

  • be accessible to the general public
  • be provided on special request 
  • be well-defined and appearing as a coherent product, for example, through a uniform design
  • have a content that can only be changed by the editorial office.

In addition, the database must have:

  • a tie to Sweden, for example, through the editorial office being located here
  • a qualified responsible editor
  • The database must have a name that cannot be confused with the name of another database registered with us.

What rules apply to discussion forums and guest books on the website?

Moderated discussion forums can get constitutional protection
If all posts are approved by the editorial office prior to publication, it is possible to obtain a publishing certificate.

Unmoderated discussion forums are not constitutionally protected
Websites containing unmoderated discussion forums, article comments, guest books and similar items, are not covered by constitutional protection since they can be modified by others than the editorial office.

Remove the unmoderated discussion forum
Those who have an unmoderated service and wish to obtain a publishing certificate must separate the unmoderated service. The user service appears as a separate database. This can be achieved, for example, through different design. It is also important to clearly state that those writing the posts are personally responsible for its contents.

Obligations

If you obtain a publishing certificate for a database or website, it entails certain obligations.

  • A responsible editor shall always be appointed. He or she has sole criminal liability for what is published. The editor shall be registered with us.
  • The names of the website and editor, as well as the person who appointed the responsible editor, shall be published on the website.
  • The content of the website shall be documented for six months after publication.

These obligations do not affect constitutional protection but are in most cases subject to penalties.

Last updated 12/6/2016