Menu
EU aims to give streaming content same freedom of movement as people

EU aims to give streaming content same freedom of movement as people

European Commission wants to make it easier to download or stream entertainment while travelling

The European Commission wants to give music downloads and TV series the same freedom of movement as the people that subscribe to them, as part of an overhaul of European copyright law.

The reform is a hobby-horse of Commission Vice-President for the Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip, an Estonian unhappy that he is unable to stream Estonian football matches when away from his home country.

Such geoblocking of online content is common in Europe. Television rights, films and songs are typically licensed on a country-by-country basis, and copyright holders often prevent people from downloading in one country content they have paid for in another.

However, Ansip and others at the Commission believe that if someone has paid in their home country for access to online content, they should be able to access it from anywhere in Europe. On Wednesday they proposed a new regulation to make that happen. If approved by the European Parliament and the Council, composed of representatives of the EU's 28 member states, this cross-border portability of content could become law across the EU in 2017.

Representatives of two of the main political groupings in the European Parliament immediately welcomed the proposal.

"Our copyright rules were written at a time when dial-up internet connections meant that even downloading music was a push. Clearly in the age of video streaming, they need a major update," said Bulgarian MEP Angel Dzhambazki, copyright expert for the European Conservatives and Reformists Group.

Beyond the content portability project the Commission is considering a host of other initiatives to make it easier to license and distribute works across Europe.

On the legal side these include reviewing existing laws on satellite and cable TV distribution; providing mediation to help rights holders and distributors to agree licenses for such transmissions; developing "licensing hubs" to help creators license content across Europe, and creating catalogues of European films available for license.

The Commission also has more technical ideas for improving content portability, such as supporting the development of search tools for finding legal content online; promoting the use of standard identifiers of works that will both aid licensing and make search easier, and funding dubbing and subtitling initiatives.

Over a fifth of Europeans believe piracy is justified when content is not legally available in their country, according to Commission research, so licensing content across borders and making it as easy to find as torrent files could open up new markets for filmmakers and musicians.

Once Europeans have no such excuse for piracy, the Commission plans to tighten up enforcement of existing copyright laws, putting in place systems to help copyright holders and law enforcers to cut off the flow of money to businesses profiting from piracy. It will also look at how to make the processing of take-down notices for illegal content more efficient.

Ansip has backed away from plans to harmonize all copyright rules across the European Union, as there is insufficient support for such a move from national governments and rights holders.


Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Featured

Slideshows

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

The channel came together for another round of After Hours, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and partners descending on The Jefferson in Auckland. Photos by Maria Stefina.​

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours
Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Emerging start-up Consegna has officially launched its cloud offerings in the New Zealand market, through a kick-off event held at Seafarers Building in Auckland.​ Founded in June 2016, the Auckland-based business is backed by AWS and supported by a global team of cloud specialists, leveraging global managed services partnerships with Rackspace locally.

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland
Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners

Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners

Veritas honoured its top performing partners across the channel in Australia and New Zealand, recognising innovation and excellence on both sides of the Tasman. Revealed under the Vivid lights in Sydney, Intalock claimed the coveted Partner of the Year 2017 (Pacific) award, with Data#3 acknowledged for 12 months of strong growth across the market. Meanwhile, Datacom took home the New Zealand honours, with Global Storage and Insentra winning service provider and consulting awards respectively. Dicker Data was recognised as the standout distributor of the year, while Hitachi Data Systems claimed the alliance partner award. Photos by Bob Seary.

Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners
Show Comments