Copyright and related rights in the Digital Single Market
Directive (EU) 2019/790 on copyright in the Digital Single Market
WHAT IS THE AIM OF THE DIRECTIVE?
The directive has 3 main objectives:
to adapt certain key exceptions to copyright to the digital and the cross-border environment;
to improve licensing practices and ensure wider access to content; and
to achieve a well-functioning marketplace for copyright.
The directive updates but does not replace the 11 directives which together comprise the EU’s copyright legislation. These include:
Directive 2001/29/EC on the harmonisation of copyright in the information society; and
the directives on:
the enforcement of intellectual property rights (Directive 2004/48/EC);
orphan works (Directive 2012/28/EU); and
the collective management of copyright and related rights (Directive 2014/26/EU).
Copyright exceptions to give wider access
The directive makes it easier to use copyright-protected material for different purposes, mostly related to access to knowledge, by introducing mandatory exceptions to copyright to foster:
text- and data-mining;
digital uses of works for the purpose of illustration for teaching; and
the preservation of cultural heritage.
It facilitates licensing to give wider access to content, in particular by providing:
a new system to make it easier for cultural heritage institutions, such as libraries, museums and archives, to digitise and disseminate, including online and across borders in the EU, out-of-commerce works that they have in their collections;
a specific rule on extended collective licensing and similar mechanisms;
a negotiation mechanism to help interested parties reach agreements for the making available of audiovisual works on video-on-demand platforms.
The directive also clarifies that anyone can use and share without restriction copies of works of art in the public domain (for example, a picture of a sculpture no longer covered by copyright), under certain conditions.
Protection of press publications for online use
There are new rights granted to EU-based press publishers for the digital use of their press publications, although these rights only apply to uses by online service providers and not to private or non-commercial uses by individual users. Acts of hyperlinking and very short extracts from press publications are not subject to these new rights.
Authors of works included in a press publication should receive an appropriate share of the income derived from its use.
Use of protected content by online content-sharing platforms
Online content-sharing service providers should obtain permission from rights holders to make works uploaded by their users available to the public, for example through a licensing agreement. If a licence is not concluded, the concerned platforms benefit from a liability-mitigation mechanism, but they have to make ‘best efforts’ to make sure that unauthorised content is not available on their websites. They must make those efforts on the basis of relevant and necessary information provided by the rightholders.
Users are allowed to post content for the specific purposes of quotation, criticism, review, caricature, parody or pastiche and may use complaint and redress mechanisms in case of disputes over content erroneously blocked or removed from the platforms.
Fair remuneration for authors and performers
EU countries should ensure that a principle of appropriate and proportionate remuneration applies when an author or performer has transferred or licensed his rights for exploitation by another party (e.g. a publisher or a producer).
Transparency and revocation
Authors and performers should receive regularly — at least once a year — up-to-date, relevant and comprehensive information on the exploitation of their works and performances. They have a right of revocation, after a reasonable period of time, in the event of non-use of the work or performance.
The negotiating rights of authors and performers are strengthened. They have the right to claim from the party with whom they have a contract for the exploitation of rights, appropriate and fair additional remuneration in cases where the remuneration initially agreed is unreasonably low in relation to all subsequent income resulting from exploitation of the works.
It has applied since 6 June 2019 and must become law in all EU countries by 7 June 2021.
For more information, see:
Copyright (European Commission)
Digital Single Market — Factsheet (European Commission).
Text- and data-mining: any automated analytical technique aiming to analyse text and data in digital form in order to generate information such as patterns, trends and correlations.
Directive (EU) 2019/790 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 April 2019 on copyright and related rights in the Digital Single Market and amending Directives 96/9/EC and 2001/29/EC (OJ L 130, 17.5.2019, pp. 92-125)
Directive 2001/29/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 May 2001 on the harmonisation of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society (OJ L 167, 22.6.2001, pp. 10-19)
Successive amendments to Directive 2001/29/EC have been incorporated into the original document. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.
Copyright and related rights: satellite broadcasting and cable retransmission
Directive 93/83/EEC on the coordination of certain rules concerning copyright and rights related to copyright applicable to satellite broadcasting and cable retransmission, as amended by Directive (EU) 2019/789 on the exercise of copyright and related rights
It aims to facilitate the licensing of copyright and related rights for satellite broadcasting and cable retransmission services in the EU’s single market, and thereby to improve the cross-border availability of radio and television programmes.
‘Country of origin’ principle for satellite broadcasting
The directive introduced an exclusive right for authors to authorise the communication to the public by satellite of their works.
In order to facilitate cross-border satellite broadcasting, the directive provides that the communication to the public by satellite takes place in the EU country of origin of the satellite transmission, i.e. in the EU country where the programme-carrying signals are introduced, under the control and responsibility of a broadcasting organisation, into an uninterrupted chain of communication leading to the satellite and down towards the Earth. According to this ‘country of origin principle’, copyright authorisations for satellite broadcasting only need to be obtained for the EU country of origin of the satellite broadcast and not for the EU countries where the signals are received.
Mandatory collective management of rights for cable retransmission
The directive also makes it easier to obtain the authorisation of holders of copyright and related rights for the retransmission by cable of television or radio programmes from other EU countries. Rights holders can exercise their right to authorise or prohibit the retransmission of their works or other subject-matter (as part of the broadcast programmes that are being retransmitted) only via a collecting society. This applies to all relevant rights, except those that are held by broadcasting organisations themselves.
Where no agreement can be reached allowing the retransmission of a broadcast, the parties may call upon mediators who can assist with the negotiation and may also submit non-binding recommendations to the parties.
The definition of cable retransmission originally included in this directive was slightly amended by Article 9 of Directive (EU) 2019/789 (see summary) in order to cover situations in which the programme-carrying signals are transmitted by broadcasting organisations to cable operators through the technical process of direct injection (defined in Article 2 of the same directive). This is the only amendment brought by Directive (EU) 2019/789, which otherwise complements Directive 93/83/EEC by introducing new rules aimed at further facilitating the cross-border distribution of radio and television programmes.
A European Commission staff working document evaluated the operation of the directive in 2016.
Application & Background
The directive has applied since 4 October 1993 and had to become law in the EU countries by 1995.
The revised definition of ‘cable retransmission’ has applied since 6 June 2019.
Modernisation of the EU copyright rules (European Commission)
The Satellite and Cable Directive (European Commission).
Council Directive 93/83/EEC of 27 September 1993 on the coordination of certain rules concerning copyright and rights related to copyright applicable to satellite broadcasting and cable retransmission (OJ L 248, 6.10.1993, pp. 15-21)
Successive amendments to Directive 93/83/EEC have been incorporated into the original text. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.
Directive (EU) 2019/789 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 April 2019 laying down rules on the exercise of copyright and related rights applicable to certain online transmissions of broadcasting organisations and retransmissions of television and radio programmes, and amending Council Directive 93/83/EEC (OJ L 130, 17.5.2019, pp. 82-91)
Commission Staff Working Document: Evaluation of the Council Directive 93/83/EEC on the coordination of certain rules concerning copyright and rights related to copyright applicable to satellite broadcasting and cable retransmission (SWD(2016) 308 final, 14.9.2016)