Surely you have heard about the “famous” European Directive on Copyright. According to this directive memes will be banned or censorship will be established on the internet. This regulation is already approved and the countdown begins for its application. Do you want to know what it really is and how it will affect you if you work in the marketing sector?
On 15th of April, the Council of the European Union finally adopted the Copyright Directive in the Digital Single Market. After two years it has seen the light one of the most controversial community regulations that are remembered. Its impact will be so important that it is one of the marketing trends to be taken into account in 2019.
According to their supporters, the European Copyright Directive will defend the content creators of Internet giants; according to their detractors, it will establish online censorship. Let’s see what this regulation really says and how it will affect the marketing sector.
Main news of the European Copyright Directive
The new directive reforms the rules that protect copyright in the European Union to adapt them to the digital age, since they had not been updated for more than 20 years. Basically, the regulations oblige Internet companies, such as Google or Facebook, to reward creators for the contents that are shared on their platforms.
For example, if a user accesses to a content in Google News, Google must pay the media outlet that published it. Also if a user sees a video on Facebook that is copyrighted, Facebook must reward the creator or the owner of the video rights. Internet companies will be responsible for removing all content from their channels that are not licensed, not only when they receive a complaint from the owner as before. This will force these companies to review all the contents that Internet users share on their platforms.
The Internet users’ associations fear that, faced with the risk of being sanctioned, Internet companies use algorithms to automatically block any content uploaded by a user for which they are not sure if they have a license. It would be a similar system to the one that Facebook uses to block pornography and that generates many complaints.
To avoid this, the European directive has incorporated some exceptions. For example, it will not apply to the academic world, to Wikipedia or to startups that are less than three years old. It will also be possible to share snippets of news, but not entire news. It will be also possible continue using memes that are protected by freedom of expression.
How will the new copyright directive affect marketing?
The vote of last April supposes the final approval of the European Directive of Rights of Author, but it does not imply it is automatic entrance into force. As it happened with the General Regulation of Data Protection, there is a period of two years for each country to adapt and apply the regulations to its market. Therefore, we will not see its effects for a while. However, to prevent what happened with the RGPD, the companies and professionals that work with content better begin to prepare.
On the one hand, we will see how media, social networks and content aggregation portals react to this regulation. Will they look for global agreements for the management of copyright? Will opposing alliances emerge? Or will directly choose to restrict all the contents of the users that are subject to copyright? This can redefine how content is shared in the coming years. The most doomsayers, such as Google, say that it can reduce media traffic by up to 45%.
On the other hand, professionals should be careful with the content we generate, to ensure we have the necessary rights to include in marketing and communication materials, for example, an image, a video, a fragment of a news or a comparison published on the Internet, etc. At the same time, we may need to start helping to protect the copyrights of the brands we work for, for example with rights management tools or services such as YouTube’s Content ID.
There is no doubt that updating the protection of copyright is good news for all. As any novelty, it is possible that the entry into force of the European Copyright Directive creates uncertainties, but we will surely solve them.
What do you think about the new Copyright Directive? Comment on social networks!