Volume 46 (2009) / Issue 3
The paper gives a topical overview of copyright law in the EC. Firstly, the remarkably comprehensive acquis communautaire in copyright law (with seven specific Directives in the field to date) is briefly outlined. Secondly, the growing body of ECJ case law, referring to the provisions of the Directives’ copyright acquis communautaire, is described and discussed in detail. Thirdly, recent policy initiatives of the Commission, such as the planned extension of the protection term for performing artists and producers of sound recordings as well as the recent Green Book on Copyright in the Knowledge Economy are briefly discussed and critically evaluated. Ultimately, this allows to identify certain core areas of European copyright law for further harmonization or consolidation, such as the fields of copyright contract law, collective management of copyrights and the area of exceptions to copyright in their interplay with technological protection measures. On that basis, perspectives for the future are developed, namely discussing the future possibility of a genuine unification of European copyright law by way of a Community copyright regulation.
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