European Parliament approves controversial EU copyright reforms in victory for creative sector

Screen | 3/26/2019 | Staff
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The European Union’s controversial Copyright Directive in the Digital Single Market was approved in a decisive vote by the European Parliament in Strasbourg today (March 26).

A total of 658 European deputies participated in the vote with 348 voting in favour of the directive and 274 voting against it. Another 36 deputies abstained.

Reforms - Era - EU - Copyright - Legislation

The reforms update 20-year-old, pre-digital era EU copyright legislation and aim to ensure that professionals across all the creative industries are paid fairly for their work. They have been at the heart of a fierce lobbying campaign, pitting those who believe the reforms are essential to ensure creatives are properly paid for their work against a US tech giant-led lobby which claims they pose a threat to the internet and freedom of expression.

If Tuesday’s vote had been negative it would have killed off the directive for an indefinite period in its current form as there would not have been enough time to renegotiate it ahead of European Parliament elections in May, which may see a very different set of deputies taking seats.

Bodies - Artists - Disciplines - Victory - Members

Professional bodies representing artists across all disciplines were jubilant about the hard-fought victory for its members.

The Federation of European Film Directors (FERA), the Federation of Screenwriters in Europe (FSE) and the Society of Audiovisual Authors (SAA), which have been at the forefront of the battle to get the reforms through – welcomed the vote in a joint statement.

Months - Negotiations - EU - Institutions - Compromise

“After many months of negotiations, the EU institutions have reached a compromise on the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market that establishes a much-needed level playing field for the cultural and creative sectors, in particular the audiovisual industry, to adapt to the 21st century online environment and integrate the global online players in the European copyright ecosystem,” they said in a joint statement.

The bodies said that the...
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