Earlier this month, we reported that the Committee on Legal Affairs of the European Parliament had approved an amended EU copyright evaluation report (the “Report”) outlining a reform of copyright law in the European Union.
On July 9, 2015 the plenary of the European Parliament voted to accept the Report with several changes.
Notably, the Parliament removed the controversial proposal included in the draft Report that would have limited the freedom of panorama exemption currently included in various EU Member States’ copyright laws. That exemption permits the non-commercial use of images of buildings and other art which are permanently located in a public place.
The Parliament also rejected a renewed attempt for an ancillary copyright for press publishers.
The Report and its content are likely to influence the copyright reform discussion already initiated by the European Commission promising to provide specific proposals to further promote a Digital Single Market by fall 2015: According to Julia Reda, Commissioner Oettinger now “cannot limit his upcoming reform proposals to improving conditions for cross-border trade.”
Reforming exceptions to copyright protection must be at the center of his initiative, since they fulfil such an essential, multi-facetted role.