What is this about?
The aim of the directive is to modernise legislation to respond to the new uses of works, equalise copyright in the Digital Single Market, improve the position of copyright holders in the online environment and ensure a level playing field in the digital market in the EU. The directive also confirms the importance and functionality of the extended collective licence system in the secondary use market.
Timetable and the ministry responsible for the reform
On 15 April 2019, the EU adopted a new directive on copyright and related rights in the Digital Single Market, which must be incorporated into Finnish legislation in 2021 at the latest. The draft of the government’s proposal was open for consultation from 1 October to 3 November 2021. The government’s draft proposal was presented to the parliament in April 2022.
The amendments to the Finnish Copyright Act caused by the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market were prepared by the Ministry of Education and Culture. In addition to the Education and Culture Committee, the matter was discussed in the Constitutional Law Committee, the Transport and Communications Committee and the Commerce Committee.
Parliament approved the amendments on 27 February 2023, and they entered into force on 3 April 2023. The amendments improve the position of authors, publishers and performing artists as required by EU directives. In our news article, we have compiled the most significant changes in the updated Copyright Act from the perspective of creative professionals.
Kopiosto’s view: Changes to the copyright act must be reconsidered
The EU’s Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market and Online Broadcasting Directive will change our own Copyright Act. The draft law prepared by the Ministry of Education and Culture weakens the rights of authors. We call for the law to be sent back for preparation.
Copyright makes it possible to earn a living with creative work. If creative work is no longer protected by effective legislation defending the rights of authors, those working in culture, information and entertainment will be significantly worse off than now.
The draft Copyright Act does not meet the intention of the EU’s Directives to improve the position of copyright holders in the online environment and harmonise copyrights in the digital single market. The justification for the draft law is, in many respects, very inadequate and value-laden. The effects of the proposed legislative changes are dealt with in an oversimplified manner with no research-based assessments.
Kopiosto’s view on the national implementation of the directive
The best solution for cultural operators and the creative economy is if the majority of the directive is included in Finnish legislation verbatim. The directive contains many specific provisions that leave little room to manoeuvre in Finland. Most of the stipulations in the directive must, indeed, be implemented in Finland as they are.
Kopiosto believes that relying on the functional extended collective licence system is in the best interest of the copyright holders, users and society at large.
The directive identifies the Finnish system of using extended collective licences as a method of managing rights and licensing in so-called mass use situations, in particular. The extended collective licence allows for a license issued by an organisation representing authors and copyright holders – such as Kopiosto – to also cover copyright holders not represented by the organisation. External copyright holders can also receive remunerations from organisations. Kopiosto believes that relying on the functional extended collective licence system is in the best interest of the copyright holders, users and society at large.
We should always select an option to emphasise individual or collective agreement where possible when implementing the directive. Several articles include options that emphasise and enable agreements.