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The Audiovisual Media Services Directive

26-09-2018

The Audiovisual Media Services Directive is the cornerstone of media regulation in the EU. It ensures a minimum harmonisation of certain aspects of national legislation facilitating the circulation of such services in the EU. The European Commission proposed an update of the directive to improve the balance between competitiveness and consumer protection, while reflecting a new approach to online platforms. The European Parliament is due to vote during its October I plenary session on the text agreed ...

The Audiovisual Media Services Directive is the cornerstone of media regulation in the EU. It ensures a minimum harmonisation of certain aspects of national legislation facilitating the circulation of such services in the EU. The European Commission proposed an update of the directive to improve the balance between competitiveness and consumer protection, while reflecting a new approach to online platforms. The European Parliament is due to vote during its October I plenary session on the text agreed in trilogue negotiations.

Remaining 'united in diversity' thanks to multilingualism

21-09-2018

The diversity underpinning the European project is embodied in the harmonious co-existence of 24 official languages. Following the success of the European Year of Languages (2001), the Council of Europe designated 26 September as the European Day of Languages. The European Parliament has consistently acted to support endangered languages and linguistic diversity in the EU, calling on the EU and the Member States to commit resources to their protection and promotion. In May 2018, the European Commission ...

The diversity underpinning the European project is embodied in the harmonious co-existence of 24 official languages. Following the success of the European Year of Languages (2001), the Council of Europe designated 26 September as the European Day of Languages. The European Parliament has consistently acted to support endangered languages and linguistic diversity in the EU, calling on the EU and the Member States to commit resources to their protection and promotion. In May 2018, the European Commission put forward a proposal aimed at improving the teaching and learning of languages.

Ready, steady, go: European Week of Sport 2018

17-09-2018

The low levels of physical activity among both children and adults in the European Union (EU) are alarming, and have become a matter of great concern to policy-makers. To raise awareness of the role and benefits of sport and physical activity, the European Commission launched the European Week of Sport back in 2015. The fourth annual round of the event will officially kick off in Vienna's Prater Park on 22 September this year.

The low levels of physical activity among both children and adults in the European Union (EU) are alarming, and have become a matter of great concern to policy-makers. To raise awareness of the role and benefits of sport and physical activity, the European Commission launched the European Week of Sport back in 2015. The fourth annual round of the event will officially kick off in Vienna's Prater Park on 22 September this year.

The Audiovisual Media Services Directive

14-06-2018

On 6 June 2018, European Parliament negotiators and the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council agreed on an updated EU Audiovisual Media Services Directive, based on the proposal presented by the Commission on 25 May 2016. The overarching goal of the proposal is to bring about a balance between competitiveness and consumer protection. It therefore aims to introduce flexibility when restrictions only applicable to TV are no longer justified, promote European films, protect minors and tackle hate speech ...

On 6 June 2018, European Parliament negotiators and the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council agreed on an updated EU Audiovisual Media Services Directive, based on the proposal presented by the Commission on 25 May 2016. The overarching goal of the proposal is to bring about a balance between competitiveness and consumer protection. It therefore aims to introduce flexibility when restrictions only applicable to TV are no longer justified, promote European films, protect minors and tackle hate speech more efficiently. The proposal also reflects a new approach to online platforms. Following the informal agreement, the text is expected to be put to the vote in plenary in autumn 2018. Fifth edition. The ‘EU Legislation in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Broadcasting of major sports events in the EU

28-05-2018

The topic of audiovisual sports rights has gained increasing relevance, including in the light of the upcoming football World Cup in Russia this summer. As most people will not be able to attend the sports games they wish to see, they will use the media to hear the news or to get full direct coverage through live broadcasts. However, media coverage of sports events is regulated by complex copyright rules and the exclusive right to broadcast top sports events live comes at a cost. In 2014, the global ...

The topic of audiovisual sports rights has gained increasing relevance, including in the light of the upcoming football World Cup in Russia this summer. As most people will not be able to attend the sports games they wish to see, they will use the media to hear the news or to get full direct coverage through live broadcasts. However, media coverage of sports events is regulated by complex copyright rules and the exclusive right to broadcast top sports events live comes at a cost. In 2014, the global sports rights market was worth nearly €19 billion. In the EU, broadcasters spent around €5.8 billion on the acquisition of rights in 2009, which represented nearly 17 % of their total €34.5 billion programming spend. But how exclusive can audiovisual rights be?

Celebrating the European Day of Languages

20-09-2017

Following the success of the European Year of Languages (2001), the Council of Europe designated 26 September as the European Day of Languages. Since then, annual celebrations of this day have been held to promote the rich linguistic and cultural diversity of Europe. The European Parliament has consistently acted to support endangered languages and linguistic diversity in the EU, calling on the EU and the Member States to commit resources to their protection and promotion.

Following the success of the European Year of Languages (2001), the Council of Europe designated 26 September as the European Day of Languages. Since then, annual celebrations of this day have been held to promote the rich linguistic and cultural diversity of Europe. The European Parliament has consistently acted to support endangered languages and linguistic diversity in the EU, calling on the EU and the Member States to commit resources to their protection and promotion.

Perspectives on transatlantic cooperation: Culture in EU-US relations

11-07-2017

North America and Europe dominate the global trade in cultural goods. Together they account for 49 % of exports and 62 % of imports. However, there is a significant cultural divide between the EU and USA, which is reflected in contrasting policy approaches towards culture. Under the 2005 Unesco Convention – not signed by the USA – the EU has a legal obligation to protect and promote the diversity of cultural expressions, a principle also enshrined in Article 167 TFEU. Culture and the audiovisual ...

North America and Europe dominate the global trade in cultural goods. Together they account for 49 % of exports and 62 % of imports. However, there is a significant cultural divide between the EU and USA, which is reflected in contrasting policy approaches towards culture. Under the 2005 Unesco Convention – not signed by the USA – the EU has a legal obligation to protect and promote the diversity of cultural expressions, a principle also enshrined in Article 167 TFEU. Culture and the audiovisual sectors are supported in the EU through its ‘Creative Europe’ framework programme, but most importantly through the EU-28’s national budgets, with cultural spending representing between 0.2 % and 1.9 % of GDP in the 2000-2005 period. By contrast, cultural action in the USA is not centrally guided by any federal policy, and the resources made available are relatively small for a country boasting the world’s largest economy. While the EU has a (long) tradition in supporting cultural and creative industries, in the USA, culture is generally viewed as a commodity with the American film and music industries perceived as its main ambassadors. In 2016, the EU announced a strategy for international cultural relations, seeking, among other things, to fill gaps and remove misconceptions about the EU. In July 2017, the European Parliament welcomed the initiative. Similarly, the EU Delegation in the USA, together with the recently created Euro-American Cultural Foundation, run a number of cultural initiatives to bring the best of EU culture and help advance knowledge of the EU and the value of the transatlantic partnership. This briefing continues a series which formed part of a broader research project on perspectives on transatlantic cooperation, requested by the Chair of the European Parliament’s Delegation for relations with the United States.

Creating opportunities: The EU and students

27-06-2017

Over one third of the European Union (EU) population – some 170 million citizens – are aged under 30, with half that number under the age of 15 years. Although education policies in the EU are essentially decided and implemented by the individual EU countries, the EU provides sound evidence and analysis to help national governments make informed policy decisions and drive reforms to improve educational outcomes and the employability of young people. For this purpose, in 2009, the EU set a series ...

Over one third of the European Union (EU) population – some 170 million citizens – are aged under 30, with half that number under the age of 15 years. Although education policies in the EU are essentially decided and implemented by the individual EU countries, the EU provides sound evidence and analysis to help national governments make informed policy decisions and drive reforms to improve educational outcomes and the employability of young people. For this purpose, in 2009, the EU set a series of common objectives to address the most pressing concerns in EU education systems by 2020. In several areas, the EU scores well. In 2015, 39 % of the EU workforce held a higher education degree. Between 2005 and 2015, the percentage of early school leavers decreased by some 30 %, even though during 2016, progress towards meeting the EU target slowed and currently stands at an average of 11 % – one percentage point away from achieving the target. However, the EU faces the major challenge of further upskilling its population and reducing under-achievement in basic skills. In specific terms, the results show that over 22 % of EU students have low achievement levels in mathematics, nearly 18 % in reading, and some 17 % in science. Moreover, by 2020, the EU aims for at least 15 % participation in learning among the population aged 25-64 years. Nevertheless, progress towards this target has been very limited. The EU average in adult learning stood at some 11 % in 2014 (the target was 15 %), and did not increase in 2015. Only urgent and substantive action will enable the EU to reach the benchmark. On a more optimistic note, the Erasmus student mobility programme that has allowed more than 9 million Europeans to study abroad, turns 30 in 2017. Widely recognised as one of the most successful EU programmes, Erasmus provides a concrete example of the positive impact of European integration.

State aid in sport: Striking a difficult balance

07-06-2017

Under the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, a measure constitutes state aid if it grants a selective economic advantage to one or more enterprises through state resources, thus distorting or threatening to distort competition. However, not all forms of state aid are prohibited. Indeed, under certain conditions the European Commission may consider the state aid acceptable. This is notably the case when the support measures pursue a common objective or underpin the general interest. ...

Under the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, a measure constitutes state aid if it grants a selective economic advantage to one or more enterprises through state resources, thus distorting or threatening to distort competition. However, not all forms of state aid are prohibited. Indeed, under certain conditions the European Commission may consider the state aid acceptable. This is notably the case when the support measures pursue a common objective or underpin the general interest. The Commission has developed a methodology to determine the compatibility of support measures with the Treaty provisions. It includes a 'balancing test', which is based on various questions aimed at analysing the negative effects of the aid measure and weighing them against its positive effects in reaching the objective of common interest. The decisions on state aid for sports infrastructure adopted up until recently revealed a consistent and favourable approach on the part of the Commission towards aid measures for sports infrastructure. In the process, the Commission translated some recurring general principles into operational exemption criteria. Building on those principles, in 2014, the Commission’s General Block Exemption Regulation clarified the types of sports infrastructure investment that should be considered exempt from the EU’s general laws on state aid. The European Commission has not yet articulated sector-specific rules regarding support measures granted to individual professional sports clubs. However, prompted by complaints from individual citizens, the case law on the Commission’s discretion in handling complaints, and the impact of the European Ombudsman’s recommendations, the Commission has substantially increased the number of in-depth investigations into various public support measures in favour of certain professional football clubs in the last few years.

Resource efficiency: Reducing food waste, improving food safety

10-05-2017

As part of its action plan on the circular economy, the EU is aiming to give substance to a more efficient use of resources by reducing food waste and increasing food security. The European Parliament is due to vote in May 2017 on an own-initiative report proposing measures to cut the 88 million tonnes of edible food wasted annually in the EU by half by 2030.

As part of its action plan on the circular economy, the EU is aiming to give substance to a more efficient use of resources by reducing food waste and increasing food security. The European Parliament is due to vote in May 2017 on an own-initiative report proposing measures to cut the 88 million tonnes of edible food wasted annually in the EU by half by 2030.

Upcoming events

07-11-2018
How to win Elections: Reflections on the use and misuse of technology in electoral campaigns
Workshop -
STOA
08-11-2018
Comparative Law Forum - The right to respect for private life: Digital challenges
Other event -
EPRS
19-11-2018
European Cultural Heritage
Other event -
CULT

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