Coalition urges European Council to solve ‘value gap’


Coalition urges European Council to solve ‘value gap’

Mikolette /

Creative industry organisations have urged the new presidency of the European Council to seek an “effective solution” to what they call the value gap.

The presidency of the Council rotates among the EU member states every six months, with Bulgaria taking the helm from January 1, 2018. 

The letter was sent by 24 organisations, including the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, on January 30, a day before an EU meeting on the draft copyright directive.

According to the coalition, the value gap is the “growing mismatch between the value that online user-uploaded content website services extract from creative content and the revenues returned to the creative community”.

Sites such as YouTube, which allow users to upload content, claim that they don’t need to negotiate licences for the music on their platforms, or they conclude licences at “artificially low rates”, said the letter. 

The coalition said that the new presidency provides the “unmissable opportunity” for a solution to be found, and that the proposal should clarify that user-uploaded content services communicate to the public so that they are obliged to obtain licences for copyright-protected work unless they are eligible for safe harbour protection. 

However, it added that services that play an ‘active role’ (for instance by promotion or optimisation of content) cannot benefit from these safe harbours.

“It is important to recall that the underlying policy objective of this legislation is to address the current unfairness in the online market due to the misapplication of copyright liability rules by user-uploaded content services,” concluded the coalition.

European Council, IFPI, creative organisations, value gap, safe harbours, internet, Digital Single Market, Copyright Directive

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