European Consumer Centre Bulgaria

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EU negotiators agree to facilitate access to online TV and radio content across borders

18.12.2018

The negotiators of the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council, have reached a political agreement on the proposed copyright legislation on TV and radio programmes.
The new rules will make it easier for European broadcasters to make certain programmes available on their live TV or catch-up services online and will simplify the distribution of more radio and TV channels by retransmission operators

While 41% of Europeans watch TV online, the number is higher among the young generation with 50% of Europeans aged 15-24 doing it at least once a week. And among Europeans aged 15-45, 19% use online broadcasting services to watch TV series and films.

What will the directive change for the distribution of TV and radio programmes?

  • The Principle of the country of Origin: the Directive introduces the country of origin (COO) principle to facilitate the licensing of rights for certain programmes that broadcasters may wish to offer on their online services (simulcasting, catch-up services and other services that complement the main broadcast, such as previewing). Thanks to this mechanism, broadcasters will be able to make radio programmes, TV news and current affairs programmes as well as their fully financed own productions, available online in all EU countries.
  • Retransmission: the Directive provides a mechanism to facilitate the licensing of rights in the case of retransmission of radio and TV programmes, which includes retransmission services provided over the internet under certain conditions. This measure is expected to contribute to a wider distribution of radio and TV channels.
  • Direct injection: Direct injection is a process increasingly used by broadcasters to transmit their programmes to the public. The new rules will make sure that right holders are adequately remunerated when their works are used in programmes transmitted through direct injection. They will provide legal certainty to broadcasters and distributors involved in the process.
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