MEP: High time for modern European copyright laws

Member of the European Parliament, Marietje Schaake (ALDE/D66) calls on the European Commission to finally put forward concrete proposals for the reform and modernization of European copyright laws. Today the consultation period ends during which people could propose ideas to improve copyright in Europe. Thousands of people shared their ideas with the Commission. Schaake: ”For years start-ups, interest groups and regular users of the internet in Europe have been calling for a modernization of copyright laws. Commissioner Barnier and his colleagues now have no excuses left to further delay copyright reform.” Openness So far, any reform of copyright has been met with resistance from big businesses seeking to protect their vested interests and business models, while the internet offers new opportunities. “It’s important that not just large companies can influence the decision-making process concerning copyright,” Schaake points out. “A smart online tool allowed anyone to understand and answer the Commission’s questions. For years I have been promoting this kind of openness to become an integral part of European governance.” Necessary reforms The list of flaws in Europe’s outdated copyright laws is long. Teachers and researchers run into problems when they try to use online teaching methods or big data research. New services for e-books or online music and film have difficulty getting off the ground in Europe because they have to deal with 28 different legal frameworks. Schaake: “Rules that were made when the typewriter was still considered to be modern do not fit an age where computers and the internet have made it possible to share information endlessly without loss of quality. It is high time that culture, creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship are being put front and centre and that we complete the digital single market. This is impossible without modern and common European copyright laws.”