Latest moves in the ongoing battle by the sports movement to secure new IP protection for their events were supported today (June 20th) in the European Parliament.
The Legal Affairs Committee of the European Parliament has adopted the proposal for the Review of the Copyright Directive. The issue now goes to a three-way tussle between the European Commission, European Parliament and the Council of Ministers (the trilogue).
This proposal addressed several topics close to the NMC including ‘Sport IP’, the value gap and the Publishers/News Agencies’ right.
The ‘Sport IP’ right was passed by the Committee, which is regrettable for the NMC.
Major sports organisations such as Bundesliga, EPL and La Liga have long held the ambition to secure ‘Sport IP’ and had used the important review of Copyright in Europe to argue that sports events themselves needed neighbouring rights to stop piracy of live action broadcasts.
But the NMC had argued strongly that any such ‘Sport IP’ for events was wrong in law, not the subject of an impact assessment, open-ended – and certain sports organisations with a track record of hostile media policy could not be trusted not abuse ‘sport ip’ to impose further restrictions on vital press and news business freedoms.
Regarding the Publishers/News Agencies’ Right however, the NMC welcomes the result. It is positive news for our sector and if it makes it into law it will provide legal protection by introducing rights at EU level to protect the unauthorised reproduction and making available of publishers’ press publications online. The publisher’s right is essential for the sustainability of a free and good quality press sector in Europe. The vote in favour of this part of the proposal was welcomed by European publishers, including our member the EPC.
Those rights proposals were supported by the influential author of report to the parliament’s JURI legal Committee, rapporteur Axel Voss, who also backed the ‘Sport IP’ amendment 795.