Access issues of reasons containing in Proposal for a regulation of the European parliament and of the council of Ensuring the cross-border portability of online content services in the internal market.
Seamless access to online content services by consumers throughout the Union is important for the smooth functioning of the internal market. Since the internal market comprises an area without internal frontiers relying, intern alia, on the free movement of services and persons, it is necessary to provide that consumers can use portable online content services which offer access to content such as music, games, films or sporting event not only in their Member State of residence but also when they are temporarily present in other Member States of the Union. Therefore, barriers that hamper access and use of such online content services in such cases should be eliminated.
The technological development leading to a proliferation of portable devices such as tablets and smartphones increasingly facilitates the use of online content services by providing access to them regardless of the consumers’ location. There is rapidly growing demand on the part of consumers for access to content and innovative online services not only in their home country but also when they are temporarily present in another Member State of the Union. Consumers increasingly enter into contractual arrangements with service providers for the provision of online content services. However, consumers that are temporarily present in another Member State of the Union often cannot continue accessing and using the online content services that they have acquired the right to use in their home country.
There are a number of barriers which hinder the provision of these services to consumers temporarily present in another Member State. Certain online services include content such as music, games or films which are protected by copyright and/or related rights under Union law. In particular, the obstacles to cross-border portability of online content services stem from the fact that the rights for the transmission of content protected by copyright and/or related rights such as audiovisual works are often licenced on a territorial basis as well as from the fact that online service providers may choose to serve specific markets only.
The same applies to other content such as sporting events which is not protected by copyright and/or related rights under Union law but which may be protected by copyright, related rights or by virtue of other specific legislation under national law and which is often also licenced by organisers of such events or offered by online service providers on a territorial basis. Transmissions of such content by broadcasting organisations would be protected by related rights which have been harmonised at Union level. In addition, transmissions of such content often include copyright-protected elements such as music, opening or closing video sequences or graphics. In addition, certain aspects of such transmissions relating to events of major importance for society or events of high interest to the public for the purpose of short news reports, have been harmonised by Directive 2010/13/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council. Finally, audiovisual media services within the meaning of Directive 2010/13/EU include services which provide access to content such as sporting events, news or current events.