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Parliamentary questions
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29 January 2021
Answer given by Mr Breton
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-006228/2020

Member States must implement Directive (EU) 2019/790 on copyright in the digital single market (the DSM Directive)(1) by 7 June 2021.

Once it is implemented, the answer to whether buy-out contracts ensure appropriate and proportionate remuneration for authors and performers under Article 18 will depend on a case-by-case assessment, taking into account the margins of manoeuvre left to Member States.

In particular, as mentioned by the Honourable Member, the Commission understands that one of the distinctive features of buy-out contracts is that such contracts remunerate authors and performers based on so-called lump sums, i.e. single payments.

Recital 73 of the directive indicates in this respect that lump sum payments may constitute appropriate and proportionate remuneration but they should not be the rule. Member States should have the freedom to define specific cases for the application of lump sums, taking into account the specificities of each sectors.

The practice described by the Honourable Member was also highlighted in the recently adopted Media and Audiovisual Action Plan(2), where the Commission notes that the application by platforms of a model whereby all intellectual property rights are acquired from producers and/or individual creators since the start, worldwide and in perpetuity, may have the effect of ‘locking-in’ producers and talents with the platforms in question.

The Commission will continue discussing this matter with interested parties in the context of the implementation of the DSM Directive as well as in the follow up to the Media and Audiovisual Action Plan.

(1)Directive (EU) 2019/790 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 April 2019 on copyright and related rights in the Digital Single Market and amending Directives 96/9/EC and 2001/29/EC, OJ L 130, 17.5.2019, p. 92‐125
(2)Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions ‘Europe’s Media in the Digital Decade: An Action Plan to Support Recovery and Transformation’. See in particular the box on ‘The role of platforms in Europe’s audiovisual market’ at page 2.
Last updated: 29 January 2021Legal notice - Privacy policy