Friday, 8 February 2013

European Commission Launches Copyright Licensing Initiative

The European Commission has launched an initiative called “Licences for Europe” aimed at promoting copyright licences, as a next step in maintaining traditional copyright in light of new digital technologies.

Europeans “need content. Rich, vibrant online content is a big part of that digital economy,” Neelie Kroes, vice-president of the European Commission responsible for the Digital Agenda, said in a speech announcing the initiative on 4 February in Brussels. “[T]hat’s what ‘Licences for Europe’ is about – helping you capture all the benefits of a connected, competitive continent. Ultimately, I want Europeans to enjoy a wide choice of lawful digital content, wherever they are: and for that content to be rewarded.”

“So we are launching this initiative to show technology and copyright can go together,” she said. She predicated the initiative on her past message to the copyright industry that it must change to meet the digital age, not the other way around. She pointed to Spotify in Sweden as an adaptation that has led to almost no music piracy in that country.

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