Cable Europe, the trade body representing Europe’s cable operators, has called on the European Commission to conduct a full-scale review of the rules governing the relationships between rights owners, collecting societies and users of copyrighted content. The call comes as the European Commission released a draft copy of its proposed digital copyright treaty as part of a review of copyright policy.
“The cable industry calls on the Commission to take an unbiased approach to reform on rights clearance. We have right before us the opportunity to make a new EU collective rights framework, promote progress and truly rely on the strengths of Europe’s single market,” said Cable Europe managing director, Caroline Van Weede. “Now is the time for Europe to make choices that not only take into account our modern society but work collectively to build future-proof rules for content that are free of discrimination, regardless of platform.”
In its submission to the Commission, Cable Europe is proposing a five-point plan to:
- End discrimination to ensure that content regardless of technology platform is treated the same
- Demand transparency, accountability and a functional dispute resolution mechanism for collecting societies
- Encourage competition among collecting societies
- Be market-oriented with regarding to the pricing process of content
- Promote flexibility in the current rigid rights negotiation process
“What we have today is a regulatory framework that is outdated, is not technology neutral and unable to cope with the high-tech Europe of today. If we can get the balance right and make the best use of our world-class fibre-powered networks with the best content, Europe will benefit both economically and culturally,” continued Van Weede. “Why not get both right if we have the chance before us?”
Cable Europe says that while the review is seeking to build effective relationships between the different stakeholders, this will only be possible when collection societies are given increased transparency.