Update: The draft report has now been published. This page is out of date!
The European Parliament’s first contribution to the upcoming copyright reform is going to be a report on the implementation of the previous directive on this matter from 2001 (the so-called “Infosoc Directive”).
The Parliament has appointed me rapporteur of the report. This means that over the course of the following months I am going to write it, negotiate with my peers from the other groups (called “shadow rapporteurs”) and lead it to a vote in the Legal Affairs committee and finally the entire Parliament.
What are the next steps?
|January 20, 2015||Presentation of my draft report before the Legal Affairs Committee|
|February 23/24, 2015||Debate of the draft report in the Legal Affairs Committee (will be streamed)|
|March 3, 2015||Deadline for amendments|
|March 23/24, 2015||Discussion of these amendments in the Legal Affairs Committee|
|April 16, 2015||Vote in the Legal Affairs Committee|
|May 20, 2015||Vote in plenary|
Who are the shadow rapporteurs?
Most groups have already appointed their shadow rapporteurs:
EPP Therese Comodini Cachia (Malta)
S&D Mary Honeyball (UK)
ALDE Jean-Marie Cavada (France)
ECR Angel Dzhambazki (Bulgaria)
EFDD Laura Ferrara (Italy)
What is being evaluated?
The stated aim of the 2001 InfoSoc Directive was the harmonisation of copyright legislation within the EU under the changed conditions of the information society. In my report on its implementation, I will therefore address the question of whether this directive really did manage to lower barriers to cross-border exchange of knowledge and culture, and whether it succeeded in creating comparable copyright legislation across all EU member states.
Moreover, the InfoSoc Directive was supposed to adapt copyright to the new realities of digitisation. Since its adoption in 2001, technology has continued to advance. My report is therefore also going to examine whether a directive from a time before Facebook and YouTube is still sufficient in providing legal certainty to all people who create and exchange cultural works over the internet. Reading the Infosoc Directive you encounter some rather anachronistic paragraphs referring to CD-ROMs or that the right to read digitised books is only granted at dedicated reading terminals in libraries. In this regard, there is a lot of catching up to do.
What will happen next?
The European Commission has already announced a fundamental reform of European copyright legislation for the coming year. Considering the number of replies the Commission’s consultation on the topic received last year, it is obvious that it is high time to act.
With my report, I want to contribute to a copyright reform that will improve access to knowledge and culture for all and overcome the national borders in the EU. “This video is not available in your country” needs to become a thing of the past! Keeping in mind how long it takes until the EU revisits legislation, we need to create a European copyright that is ready for unforeseeable future technological developments and flexible enough to adapt to new forms of engaging with cultural works. A critical review of the InfoSoc Directive is the first step towards that goal.
Who is trying to influence the report?
I am currently flooded with more meeting requests from lobbyists wanting to talk about my report than I can possibly accept. In order to get an overview that takes into consideration all of the affected interest groups, I will make sure that civil society, internet users, public institutions (such as libraries and archives), collecting societies, service providers, creators and scientists are given an equal opportunity to present their case. I am going to publish a list of incoming meeting requests and which ones I attended soon.
Alternatively to meeting in person, you can also send me your experiences and any issues you encountered with the implementation of European copyright legislation by email to email@example.com
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