A New Copyright Regime for Europe

The current EU copyright rules date back to 2001. So, they are older than Facebook, YouTube and Google News. Time for an overhaul.

How did we get here?

Every single day new digital services are evolving on the Internet. Yet, it is very difficult for policy makers to keep up with this ongoing innovation. Especially, when it comes to how works of authors, photographers, musicians and other creatives are supposed to be used, reproduced and shared online. That's why the European Commission decided to adapt the EU rules on copyright to the 21st century.


Why is this important for me?

Because you might get easier access to a wider choice of cultural content. Or you might not, but you are a creative and your rights will be better protected and your renumeration is improved. Briefly: It's a very, very fine line and it's diffcult to balance different interests appropriately. While users want to access content, those who actually create content must be able to continue doing so.


What's the content?

The legislative proposal presented by the EU Commissioners Andrus Ansip and Günther Oettinger, contains these main initiatives: 

As people expected a fundamental revision of EU copyright - and the Commission announced it to be exactly that - it's also important to see what the proposal doesn't include: no rules on the freedom of panorama, no end to geoblocking for streaming services, no solution for the still nationally fragmented copyright landscape.


What's happening with this legislation in the future?

This subject is currently under discussion in the European Parliament's Committee for Legal Affairs, which presented its draft report in March 2017. Several other committees (Industry, Education, Internal Market, ...) issued an opinion. The parallel discussions by the Member States' ministers of justice will most likely be fierce and long, so do not expect any results before mid 2017.


Related Bills:

Cross-border portability: Access to streaming services from abroad

Geoblocking: Less consumer discrimination online

Consumer rights for downloads and streaming services

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