The European Commission has launched an initiative called “Licence for Europe” aiming to bring together stakeholders in the creative and cultural sector to find a practical solution to remove barriers to access copyright protected materials online. Stakeholders, including the EFJ, had its first meeting to discuss the main issues at stake.
One of the main issues discussed concerns user-generated content (UGC) online which is currently growing in the sector. These contents can consist in adapting existing protected works such as photographs for creating a new content. While the European commission provides no definition of UGC for the time being and expects stakeholders to come up with suggestions it intends to legalise the access to and usage of user-generated content by the public as well as companies. The EFJ stressed that there is a need for a strict definition for UGC to prevent journalistic content from falling into the category. The EFJ said that any use of copyrighted content should be remunerated fairly. The EFJ further highlighted the ethical issue over the use of user-generated content and the need to enforce the moral rights of journalists.
The next meeting will take place in Brussels on 5 March. As a member of the Licence for Europe stakeholder dialogue, the EFJ will continue to participate in the dialogue and make sure the interests of journalists is voiced.