Protecting Copyrights in the Digital World

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Tue, 11/15/2016 - 16:37 -- Nick Dager

Protecting Copyrights in the Digital WorldCreators, artists, musicians and filmmakers, on the one hand, defend their legitimate right to reap the benefits of their work. Internet users and public at large, on their part, claim a fundamental right to access information and culture online on fair terms and by means of more attractive business models. How can the current copyright laws respond to all these challenges? What should be the role of internet intermediaries in the enforcement of copyright online? And more generally in this context, how to combine effective protection with the principle of net neutrality?  

Copyright enforcement online has been increasingly taking the center stage in the policy debate on the future of copyright law in Europe. The ongoing EU copyright reform has been fuelling this debate even further. The delivery of paying content—as well as the ways we access culture—have clearly changed in the digital world.

The European Audiovisual Observatory, part of the Council of Europe, and the Centre for International Intellectual Property Studies of the University of Strasbourg are organizing a joint public conference at thre Council of Europe in Strasbourg —Copyright Enforcement in the Online World—on November 22. The conference will give an overview of the current state of copyright in the digital world. This is a must-attend event for anyone working in the creative industries or writing about them.

This conference will discuss how European law is adapting the protection of copyright to the digital challenge. We will also question the currently prevailing enforcement strategies for their capacity to protect right holders while at the same time ensuring that users can legitimately exchange information and access culture online. Andrus Ansip, vice president of the European Commission in charge of the Digital Single Market, will outline the Commission’s approach, also in light of the current copyright reform in the EU.

As part of this conference, two MEPs – Pavel Svoboda and Julia Reda – will report about the European Parliament’s strategies for copyright protection in Europe. The conference will also be welcoming Robert Spano—a Judge of the European Court of Human Rights—alongside other representatives from the Council of Europe, as well as academics and media professionals dealing with copyright online.

Also under discussion, how the role of online service providers in copyright enforcement can most properly be defined. Also, this conference would like to focus on the important constraints that the European human rights framework imposes on the reach of copyright enforcement practices online and to the positions of the European Court of Human Rights and the Court of Justice of the EU in this regard.

Dr. Susanne Nikoltchev, the Observatory’s Executive Director said, “The acceptance of paying for content has virtually disappeared. This makes the question of how to enforce copyrights in today’s online world the main challenge. Politicians, judges, academics and professionals alike seek to answer the question and this Conference is a top opportunity to see how far they got.”

Prof. Dr. Christophe Geiger, the Director General of the CEIPI said, “This Conference is a great chance to discuss the recent European developments and proposals for copyright law in the digital world with the top professionals and experts in this field. It is also a unique setting allowing a free exchange – from the very different perspectives of right holders, creators and users – on how the copyright rules should be better conceived in the online environment.”

This is a free access public conference, however registration is compulsory. For more information email Alison.hindhaugh@coe.int.