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EU commission outlines next steps for copyright reform

Written by Ellis Sweetenham on 09 December 2015

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The European commission has outlined plans to overhaul copyright law as well as allowing online subscription services to be accessed across the EU.

This is a follow-up to the Digital Single Market Strategy released last May and highlights the next steps towards reform.

A key reform is the notion of portable online subscription services which is outlined in the first set of proposals. These online subscription services include widely used Netflix, BBC IPlayer and Sky’s Now TV. It will be the case that if content is legally bought in one country, a person can carry that content anywhere they travel in Europe. This is known as cross-border portability.

In addition, the commission also announced plans to allow providers to sell content across the EU under one set of copyright law, to create consistency and cut time and money wasting. These proposals will be turned into more concrete legislation in the next 6 months.

Alliance for Intellectual Property chairman Richard Mollet called the portable subscription proposals a "huge opportunity for the UK's creative industries, which are globally successful and are enjoyed by hundreds of millions of European consumers every day".

However, some industry bodies are criticising the proposals stating they lack detail and will be harmful to the industry.

These proposals are still to approved by the European Parliament. It is expected that this confirmation will be in 2016 leading to implementation in 2017 if approved.

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