News | Legal News

22 September 2016

EU takes ‘backward step’ on digital copyright

New EU revisions of copyright law are being criticised as "unfair", with critics suggesting the European Commission is replacing one bad system with another.

The updated copyright directive is aimed at making it easier for artists and publishers to make money from their work online.

Responsibility will be placed on hosting platforms to reach upfront licensing deals with the rights holders prior to featuring their content on their sites.

Websites would be required to remove or get authorisation for any existing content featured either in full or in part on the site.

Rights holders would have a right to demand a fee from news aggregators such as Google News for only showing snippets of content.

Digital giants such as Google and YouTube will be especially hard hit by the rules.

Google warns the new rules that would apply to its news aggregator site could restrict "free traffic" to other websites, such as news sites.

The new proposals still have to be approved by the European parliament and council of ministers and are likely to take months to come into force.

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