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Amendments to coherent EU policy for cultural and creative industries – creator’s rights and interests

The Commission is urged to establish legal provisions which create a fairer environment governing the transfer of rights and the contractual remuneration of authors and performers, to create a contract adjustment mechanism, which allows authors and performers to claim additional remuneration in case the revenues yielded out of the exploitation of the works are disproportionally high compared to the remuneration agreed in the initial contract.

It is also recommended to provide a transparency obligation for publishers and producers to detail on a regular basis timely, adequate and comprehensive information on the exploitation of works, notably as regards modes of exploitation, revenues generated and remuneration due. The Commission is urged to examine the possibility of entitling unions or associations representing creators to a kind of collective bargaining related to the definition of appropriate remuneration and to introduce a rights reversion mechanism which would enable creators to terminate a contract, namely in case of lack of exploitation, lack of payment of the remuneration foreseen, in established case of inappropriate remuneration as well as lack of regular reporting.

Consideration should be given to the introduction of a fair work label to safeguard the earnings of those unable to claim copyright protection for their products or services, given the way in which CCI occupations are structured. The digital revolution has changed the way in which citizens and companies are related and has opened new opportunities for the CCS to develop new ideas and business models, attract new audiences and expand their markets. The Commission is urged to examine the possibility of entitling unions or associations representing creators to file legal complaints on behalf of creators.

Copyright and related rights constitute the legal framework for the European cultural and creative industries (CCIs) and form the basis for their ability to generate economic activity, competitiveness, employment, creativity and innovation. The Commission is asked, in view of the upcoming copyright reform, to provide for a common definition of ‘public domain’ to ensure legal certainty together with the widespread dissemination of cultural and creative services and products across the EU and beyond.

Liability exemptions can only apply to those engaging in commercial infringements of intellectual property rights by making use of revenue streams emanating from illegal activities. The Commission is asked to take into account, as regards the taxation of online platforms, the country of destination principle rather than the country of origin principle, which is only beneficial to large companies, often enabling them to avoid tax when it comes to funding audio-visual production.

It is crucial to adapt, strengthen and enforce rules on copyright and related rights in order to create an appropriate legal framework for the European cultural and creative industry and help it generate growth and jobs and become more competitive, creative and innovative. The majority of organisations in the CCI sector are SMEs, which often face major challenges with regard to rights clearance. The Commission is asked, therefore, to simplify rights clearance systems in the upcoming copyright reform.

The Commission is urged to propose an expanded set of specifically defined exceptions to the standard copyright framework, taking into account fundamental rights and the needs of contemporary society, and to propose, in view of the ongoing review of the EU Enforcement framework, effective enforcement measures for the digital environment.

Research on right holders and intransparent rules on copyright represent administrative burdens entailing high expenses and a lot of efforts, especially for SMEs working on cross-border basis; it is recommended, therefore, to establish a common pan-European database with all available information on right holders for each sector in order to facilitate rights clearance. The Commission is urged to place greater stress on helping SME, SVE and micro-enterprises in the cultural and creativity sector to identify, assess and protect the value of their intellectual property rights.

The country of origin principle can, via tax dumping, weaken both creators and their creations at national level. Directive 2014/26/EU has led to improvements in the rights clearance system of musical works in the online environment. The Commission is asked to also improve good governance, efficiency, transparency and accountability of collective rights management organisations in other sectors.

Amendments (de) are included in the text whether in a form of a wording, replacing initial text, or in a form of a text included in initial draft.