The Copyright Directive Revision – a guessing game

Posté par Isabelle Szczepanski le 12 mai 2016

It’s difficult to guess in which direction the Juncker Commission is heading for its proposal for a Directive on copyright: “we don’t know” answer most interested parties. Fair remuneration of authors and performers, generalisation of certain exceptions, measures on the responsibility of internet platforms? No particular avenue is certain, but the range of options is being narrowed down, given that the Commission proposal, if it is to be efficient, has to satisfy the Parliament and the Council – institutions where opinions on the issue of adapting the rights of creators to the digital age can differ significantly from those of the Commission.

At the end of nearly two years of announcements of the Juncker Commission, work of the European Parliament, and intense lobbying from “stakeholders”, we can only notice that we, experts included, have no idea what the Commission will put forward on the issue of copyright. Certain insiders, like Julia Reda, claim that the proposal under preparation will not be as bold as the one initially planned by Jean-Claude Juncker and Andrus Ansip, Vice President in charge of all things digital. “The work of the Commission is going the right way, but isn’t very ambitious. When the Commission started work on the subject, they wanted to do more,” affirmed Ms Reda recently to our fellow journalists at News Tank.

This total uncertainty is even more astonishing given the approaching deadline fixed by the Commission, and the fact that the Commissioners in charge won’t be able to keep postponing things. The last we heard, the proposal to modify the Copyright Directive is due in September at the earliest, or even, according to some, in December. Publishing the proposal any later would raise questions over the credibility of a Commission that from the start made the issue one of its absolute priorities. The deadline is approaching inexorably but, in contrast to what happened for the Portability Regulation proposal where things were clear before the proposal was published, we are no…

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