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Proposed new copyright directive- what should you know?

Written by Ellis Sweetenham on 21 September 2016

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Following recent decisions in the Court of Justice for the European Union, it has been announced that the law surrounding copyright within the EU will be changing.

This change is being implemented by a new copyright Directive. While the details have not yet been completely finalised or a decision made as to when it will be coming into effect, it is important that you are clear on how the new legislation may affect you and what changes it may bring.

The European Commission has released guidance on how the law may change and for what reason.

The key reason as to what has sparked this change, seems to be the development of the Digital Single Market that should allow a more free flowing of information between member states aiding businesses to expand across to other European countries as well as allowing a universal application of copyright protection across all members.

Therefore the Commission has stated that the objectives for the creation of the new directive are as follows:

  1.  To allow for wider online access to content protected by copyright across the EU, specifically focusing on TV, radio programmes and other audiovisual works.
  2. To facilitate the use of digital protected content for education and research across the single market
  3. In addition, to ensure that the online marketplace for copyright is efficient for all states and promotes the creation of new online content rather than restricting it.

An action the Commission are keen to pursue is the reduction of the administrative burden that comes with trying to gain clearance for the use of protected work. At present, to gain clearance to use a work that is protected by copyright is difficult and leaves many businesses in a position where they are either unsure if the works they are using is allowed or if they own works are being misused by others.

This proposed plan will lay more of a burden on the hosting platforms for these works, an example being YouTube for video works, to ensure that they are taking all steps to ensure that the creators of these works are being financially supported for any third party use.

This will also increase the certainty in relation to the permitted use of copyright protected works for educational purposes. A new exception will be created that will reaffirm the position allowing teachers and students to use digital protected content for educational reasons. This clearance of uncertainty should allow for a faster paced developing learning environment to flourish.

 There will be more details released as time moves on but for now it seems that online creators of digital protected content are now being given a further layer of protection in regards to their copyright.

For any more information on this or how to ensure your work is protected by copyright, contact Lawdit Solicitors today.

If you'd like to know more about this article please send an email to Ellis Sweetenham quoting the article title and any questions you might have, alternatively call the office number on 02380 235 979 or send an enquiry through our contact form.

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