Posts Tagged Directive
And while you were distracted by that, you didn’t notice all the extra TV advertising.
While headlines spoke of another big tech tax (a Netflix Tax to add to your iPod tax, Google tax and YouTube tax – see “Fair Remuneration is not a tax”), last week reporting on the new AVMS Directive to be presented by the European Commission on 25 May failed to lead with the fact that the future of TV in Europe is more advertising.
With the new “flexible rules”, product placement and sponsorship are encouraged on all audiovisual media services and broadcasters will be able to cram more advertising into primetime (when there are more eyeballs) and advertising for programmes from the same media group don’t count. Advertising during films used to be limited to every 30 minutes, but even that has been cut down to 20 minutes. It’s a massive shift. The Commission claims that the competition in the sector will prevent any excesses and that more money will flow into production – we’re not convinced. What we do know is that the integrity of an authors’ work will be put under even more pressure from advertising and that media services’ attractiveness to consumers will decrease.
But of course, don’t worry about that. Worry about the already-met 20% European content quota and the optional financial contributions services like Netflix might have to make.
And definitely don’t look at the new definition for video sharing platforms – responsible for the organisation of the stored content, but with no editorial responsibility over this content to maintain the liability exemptions of the E-Commerce Directive…
I am back from Vilnius again where the Mykolas Romeris University, in cooperation with the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania organized a conference on the collective management of authors’ and neighbouring rights in Europe, focusing on the implementation of the 2014/26/EU Directive on Collective Rights Management.
Professors of copyright law from Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland and Germany discussed the necessary changes to their national copyright law to comply with the Directive and the possible need to develop a separate legislative corpus on the collective management of copyright and neighbouring rights. They highlighted the growing use of the term “rightholders” which dilutes the original authors among their licensees (producers, distributors) and the poor reference to authors’ rights in the 2014/26/EU Directive.
I presented the challenges of the implementation of the Directive for audiovisual authors’ societies. Today – at the implementation stage – they face the same problems they denounced at the time of the negotiation and adoption of the Directive: a text targeting music societies because of their dominant position, but applicable to all kinds of collective management organisations (CMOs) whatever their size and the rightholders they represent, thus ill-adapted to audiovisual authors’ CMOs.
The remaining question will concern the attitude of Member States towards this text. How will the Directive fit with their existing supervision mechanisms? Will they rethink their existing systems or adapt the Directive’s requirements to their local mechanisms?
When a Directive (Wikipedia definition) requires Member States to achieve a particular result without dictating the means of achieving that result (which is the usual process) Member States normally have a certain amount of leeway as to the exact rules to be adopted. But when a text like Directive 2014/26/EU goes into such detail on the way CMOs have to be organized and governed, on their distribution plans, the way they communicate with their members, their reporting requirements – which make CMOs some of the most regulated private non-profit organisations in the world! – it leaves little room for Member States to enact real implementation. If Member States are left with nothing to decide, then the temptation to just copy-paste the Directive is strong.
Is this an example of better regulation?