(a PDF version is available here)
The undersigned organizations represent the interests of hundreds of thousands of Europe’s creative talents, including writers, screenwriters, journalists, photographers, visual artists, performers or other creators.
We welcome the European Commission’s Communication on a European agenda for culture in a globalizing world. In particular, we welcome the Commission’s ambition to further develop the dialogue between the cultural sector and the EU institutions, notably through a “Cultural Forum”.
We congratulate the Portuguese Presidency for taking the initiative to organize the first Cultural Forum for Europe on 26-27 September 2007 and we welcome the willingness of the organizers to allow stakeholders to promote some topics for discussion.
The publishing, visual arts and entertainment industries, are at the core of the cultural sector. Their economy relies heavily on an adequate and efficient copyright protection. The latter is for creators an essential tool to obtain economic reward for their creative efforts and for the commercial exploitation of their works.
The “acquis communautaire” offers a potentially high degree of protection to authors and performers within the EU. However, creators are increasingly exposed to unfair contractual arrangements with other stakeholders, and also see their IP rights challenged by the ICT industry and copyleft lobbies.
We urge the Portuguese Presidency to include this issue in the cultural agenda so as to restate the importance of the authors’ and performers’ IP rights as part of the economy of culture, and acknowledge the necessity for copyright and related rights protection to be upheld and remain primarily creators-oriented.
European/International Federation of Journalists
European Visual Artists
The European Writers' Congress - La fédération des associations européennes d'écrivains
International Federation of Actors
International Federation of Musicians
Federation of Scriptwriters in Europe
Union Network International, Media, Entertainment & Arts
13 September 2007