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Technology / Data Centre

Digital Single Market sees sweeping reforms of copyright law

The European Commission has proposed new rules on content portability and sweeping reforms of copyright law across the Digital Single Market.

The suggested rules on portability would provide users with access to all the same music, video and games when abroad as at home.

Current restrictions mean, for example, a Netflix subscriber travelling from one country to another can only access the content offered in the destination country.

In addition, the Commission plans to revise rules on exceptions to copyright, allowing copyright-protected works to be used without prior authorisation from the rights holder.

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This aims to enable researchers to use text and data mining technologies to analyse large sets of data and provide clearer rules for teachers to give online courses.

The Commission additionally plans to help people with disabilities access more works and assess the need to reduce legal uncertainty for internet users uploading photos of buildings and public art works in public places.

The Commission also proposes assessing the online use of copyright-protected works to see whether the relevant parties are properly remunerated through licensing and whether the benefits of this online use are fairly shared.

This will include examining the role of news aggregation services, as well as analysing whether EU level solutions are needed to increase legal certainty, transparency and balance in remuneration of authors and performers.

The proposals included plans to ensure that these new copyright laws are properly enforced throughout the EU, with the expectation that this would cut down on piracy. 2016 will also see work on a European framework to cut the financial flows to businesses profiting from piracy.

The plan aims to have content portability reformed by 2017, when roaming charges in the EU will also end. More plans will be proposed in spring 2016.

"We want a copyright environment that is stimulating, fair, rewards investment in creativity and makes it easier for Europeans to access and use content legally," said Günther H. Oettinger, Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society.

"Our ongoing work on the role of platforms and online intermediaries will also help to translate our plan into concrete proposals."
This article is from the CBROnline archive: some formatting and images may not be present.