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EC consults on copyright

December 5, 2013

By Colin Mann

The European Commission has launched a public consultation as part of its on-going efforts to review and modernise EU copyright rules. The consultation invites stakeholders to share their views on areas identified in the Communication on Content in the Digital Single Market, i.e. territoriality in the Single Market, harmonisation, limitations and exceptions to copyright in the digital age; fragmentation of the EU copyright market; and how to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of enforcement while underpinning its legitimacy in the wider context of copyright reform.

Internal Market and Services Commissioner Michel Barnier said his vision of copyright was of a modern and effective tool that supports creation and innovation, enables access to quality content, including across borders, encourages investment and strengthens cultural diversity. “Our EU copyright policy must keep up with the times,” he stated.

In its Communication on Content in the Digital Single Market, the Commission set out two parallel tracks of action: the completion of its on-going efforts to review and modernise the EU copyright legislative framework as announced in the Intellectual Property Strategy – A Single Market for Intellectual Property Rights, while facilitating practical industry-led solutions through the stakeholder dialogue ‘Licences for Europe’ to issues on which rapid progress was deemed necessary and possible.

The Licences for Europe process has been finalised now. The Commission welcomes the practical solutions stakeholders have put forward in this context and believes that these initiatives will provide a valuable contribution to improving the availability of copyright-protected content online in the EU. Discussions and results of Licences for Europe will be taken into account in the context of the review of the legislative framework.

The consultation is open until 5 February 2014.

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