Authors’ rights: expert group discussed new EU directive

The EFJ Authors’ rights expert group convened in Brussels on 6 February. The main issue on the agenda included the new EU directive proposal on copyright in the digital single market and its implication for authors. The EFJ has adopted a policy statement that can be used as a guideline for affiliates at national level. Following a proposal from the European commission, the draft directive is being discussed in the European Parliament and within national member states. It needs a concrete response from journalists’ unions on several points. One of the most positive move in the draft text is the introduction…

EFJ-IFJ welcome proposed EU directive strengthening authors’ contractual position

The European Commission today published a proposal for a directive on authors’ rights that would help give more power to journalists. The proposal provides mechanisms to address authors’ and performers’ weaker contractual position when negotiating terms for use of their work. The federation welcomed the proposal as a “great step forward” in protecting journalists’ authors rights and called on EU institutions to do their utmost to improve authors’ remuneration in the upcoming legislative process. While acknowledging the “weaker contractual position” of authors and performers, the draft directive on copyright in the digital single market would establish three mechanisms to help secure…

The authors’ group welcomes the EU directive proposal on copyright

The European Commission presented on 14 September its proposal for a directive on copyright in the digital single market. The Authors’ Group* – representing more than 500 000 authors, including writers, literary translators, composers, songwriters, journalists, photographers, film/TV directors and screenwriters in Europe – welcomes the directive, in particular the proposal to address the key issue of creators’ weak bargaining position in their contractual relationships and fair remuneration in contracts. The Authors’ Group supports the European Commission’s commitment to address problems related to the forced transfer of rights of authors to publishers, producers and broadcasters. Achieving a well-functioning market-place for…

World Copyright Day: Outlaw unfair contractual practices!

Legislators must take concrete steps against unfair contractual clauses in their laws. This is the message put across by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) to mark World Copyright and Book Day tomorrow 23 April. The organisations warn against the continuing trend developed by media companies to use rights- grabbing contracts. Journalists who sign those contracts not only lose the right to use their works autonomously, but also the (moral) right to protect the integrity of their works. These practices allow for the same work to be used many times for one single payment…

European Parliament adopts draft report on copyright

The European Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee has today adopted in a majority vote an own initiative report on authors’ rights that including provisions to strengthen authors’ contractual position while opening up some exceptions. The controversial report initiated by the European Greens MEP Reda  is a response to current work led by the European Commission to reform copyright/authors’ rights legislation (on the implementation of the “Infosoc directive” 2001/29) in the EU . It has led to heated debates inside the European Parliament and political groups over the possibility to relax current legislation to enable users to access protected works more extensively in the…

MEPs urged to safeguard authors’ rights in copyright reforms

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) together with a group of European creators’ organisations (ESCA, EVA, EWC, FERA, FSE, GESAC, UNI-MEI and SAA) has called on members of the European Parliament in the Legal Affair Committees to examine carefully the amendments to an own initiative report on reforming EU copyright. The group expressed their concern in a letter (see below) about the draft report by MEP Julia Reda on the implementation of the 2001/29 Copyright Directive. They said, “If [the report is] not completely amended, [it] would severely weaken the position of European authors who need to be placed at…

EFJ will speak out for journalists’ authors’ rights in Strasbourg

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) represented by the President, Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, will attend the third meeting of the Copyright Working Group of the European Parliament (EP) on 12 February in Strasbourg, to address the interest of journalists in the upcoming EU copyright reform. For the first time, representatives of authors including the EFJ are invited to address the issue in front of the group and other members of the parliament. Blicher Bjerregård said, “The importance of authors’ rights has not changed because of the emergence of new media platforms. Authors’ rights become ever more important in ensuring the…