Computer & Communication Industry Association
PublishedFebruary 12, 2015

Industry Coalition in Support of MEP Reda’s Report on Copyright

CCIA together with four other industry trade associations issued an open statement Thursday on MEP Julia Reda’s draft report on the implementation of the Copyright Directive.

Reda’s draft report is a good first step towards putting the debate around copyright reform on the right track. The report identifies some major shortcomings of Europe’s current copyright framework and implicitly recognizes that Europe’s rules will increasingly stand in international competition with the legal regimes of other countries and regions. That is important to understand: just like the competition for talent is global, so is the competition for capital. Modern and future-proof copyright rules will be one of the factors that will either encourage or discourage investing into European businesses. It will also matter to European innovators building their companies in Europe.

In that context, copyright rules have a role to play to encourage innovation and technological progress. MEP Reda rightly points to the need for an ‘open norm’ which would allow to embrace technological change more easily. In a fast changing environment, flexibility is key. A second, important issue addressed by the report is the current imbalance between exclusive rights and exceptions and limitations to copyright. A more harmonized approach to exceptions and limitations has to be encouraged which would lead to greater legal certainty and pan-European market scale.

The report also stresses that basic online activities like hyperlinking to publicly accessible content need to be preserved. What sounds like a basic activity performed by millions of Internet users per day was actually challenged in a court case and was largely resolved in last year’s Svensson judgment. However, pointing people to freely accessible, legal content online is more broadly being challenged by laws that try to extend copyright protection to subject matter that has never been intended to be covered by copyright. Germany’s and Spain’s ancillary copyright legislations which target online aggregation services as well as snippets generated by search engines are a good example of how copyright is being abused for industrial policy purposes — i.e. aiming to subsidize the publishing industry at the expense of online players. (For more background information on ancillary rights, please see this CCIA background paper).

MEP’s Reda’s report clearly resists this vision of copyright law. On the contrary, it is a useful contribution towards a more forward-looking and innovation-friendly copyright policy.

reading-tablet
  • Press Releases
  • Trade

CCIA to Testify at USTR Special 301 Hearing Wednesday

Washington – The Computer & Communications Industry Association is participating in a hearing conducted by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative on Wednesday to solicit input on the agenc...
reading-tablet
  • Press Releases
  • Privacy

CCIA Files Amicus Brief In Online Privacy Case

Washington - The Computer & Communications Industry Association filed an amicus brief asking the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to affirm the U.S. District Court’s grant of summary judgm...
reading-tablet
  • Press Releases
  • Trade

CCIA Supports U.S. Agreement with Five Countries to End Digital Services Taxes

Washington – The United States has announced an extension of the deal struck with Austria, France, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom to terminate their digital services taxes (DSTs). In the deal,...
reading-tablet
  • Press Releases
  • Trade

CCIA Offers Statement, Data on Recent USTR Remarks on Digital Trade, Taxing U.S. Companies

Washington – U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador Katherine Tai gave remarks this week, casting doubt on whether, as a matter of trade policy, the U.S. government should support U.S. companies in fa...