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EU Plans Work on Overhaul of Copyright Rules for Digital Age

Dec. 5 (Bloomberg) -- European Union regulators plan to work on an overhaul of the bloc’s copyright rules to “make them fit” for the digital age.

The European Commission decided today to adapt the rules governing how copyrights are used and enforced across the 27-nation EU to meet challenges presented by the Internet. The regulator seeks to complete work by 2014.

The goal is to “work for a modern copyright framework that guarantees effective recognition and remuneration of rights holders in order to provide sustainable incentives for creativity” and combating piracy, the Brussels-based commission said in a statement.

EU lawmakers in July rejected a global anti-piracy treaty, known as ACTA, that would have established global rules for cracking down on piracy, including illegal file-sharing. Key goals in today’s initiative are to improve enforcement of copyright rules across the EU and harmonize the fragmented way copyrights apply across the bloc’s 27 nations.

The commission next year will have discussions with industry officials to tackle six “concrete problems.” This includes how to solve the effect of copyright territoriality when consumers who have legally downloaded content such as music or e-books in one EU nation, can’t access it in another EU country.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephanie Bodoni in Brussels via sbodoni@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at aaarons@bloomberg.net

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