18 | 04 | 2018

The European Union Intellectual Property Office Published Two New Studies

The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) published two new studies related to the field of the protection of copyright and related rights.

The first study was published under the title of “2018 Report on the Test Case Legal Online Offer Film”. The research was conducted by the end of 2017, in order to assess consumers’ experience with accessing digital film content via legal online sources. The test case covers online on-demand services, the so-called video-on-demand. It was conducted in several Member States of the European Union, namely in Austria, Bulgaria, Germany, France, Italy, Latvia, Poland, Sweden Slovenia and the United Kingdom. A set of films was divided into several categories, and the research showed that the search through available sources enabled international films (of non-EU origin) to be found by far the most often, whereas the availability of other film categories falls behind it. The research also showed that documentaries proved the most difficult to find in all countries. It was evident from the discussion about consumers’ experience in online on-demand services that the users with concrete preferences regarding film content would search through the offer of several internet providers in order to reach the desired content and they considered it sometimes too long to wait before a film becomes available on the internet. It is possible for a part of them to turn to illegal services, another part would watch the film in a movie theatre, whereas the rest would wait for the film to become available on the internet services, whereby a time span of maximum six months is considered acceptable for the release window. The findings of this research are available at the following link.

The second study was published under the title of “Orphan Works Survey 2017 – Summary Report”. Creative works, such as books, newspaper and magazine articles, films and other subject matter of protection under copyright law, can be declared orphan works unless their authors are identified or located despite diligent searches conducted by competent institutions or organisations. On the level of the European Union, orphan works are regulated by the Directive 2012/28/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on certain permitted uses of orphan works. Since 2014, the Orphan Works Database has been established at the EUIPO and the Competent National Authorities designated in each EU Member State forward information on orphan works to be recorded in this European database. During 2017, the EUIPO conducted the online survey on the use of the Orphan Works Database, in order to identify potential problems and to provide for effective use of the system thus established. There were 120 legal and natural persons from 26 countries (25 EU Member States and 1 EEA country) participating in the survey, showing that users are largely satisfied or have positive experience in using the Orphan Works Database. However, Competent National Authorities indicate that diligent searches which must be performed before a creative work can be declared to be an orphan work take too much time and are too complex, requiring extra financial and human resources, which certainly make mass digitisation procedures in this area slow down. The result details of the survey are available via the following link.

Let us also remind you of the study published recently, in this area as well, under the title of “Study on Deposit Systems for Audiovisual Works”, reported about on our website.


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