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Changes in copyright law. Business supports digital media

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The Polish Business Roundtable expresses its full support for the appeal of Polish publishers, editorial offices and journalists to introduce the necessary changes to the copyright act currently before the Senate, the organization informed in a press release. Representatives of entrepreneurs emphasized that “the work of creators, journalists and editorial offices cannot be free content that technology giants – Google, Microsoft or Meta/Facebook – can use freely and with impunity.”

Polish media appeal to politicians about changes in the content of the amendment to the Copyright and Related Rights Act adopted by the Sejm. They demand a strengthening of the publishers' position in relations with technology giants such as Google, Microsoft or Meta, who earn money from journalistic content, although they do not create it themselves.

Entrepreneurs' position

In the statement of the Polish Business Roundtable entitled “Polish creators are not geese, they have their own content… and it should be protected by copyright”, the business community stands behind the postulates of the media community. “Polish media must be supported by the Polish state in this unequal confrontation”, emphasizes the PRB.

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“Leaving key negotiation issues in the hands of the parties without appropriate legislative support puts our media in a losing position from the start,” we read in the Council's position.

“The most difficult situation will be faced by smaller and regional broadcasters who do not have the resources to effectively fight for their rights and often struggle with financial difficulties. The law should define the rules for resolving disputes and secure fair compensation for the content used,” it was written.

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Business representatives appealed to the Senate and all political options to take into account the demands of Polish media and introduce the necessary amendments to the act. “Protecting Polish publishers from the domination of global technology giants is not only a matter of justice, respect for work, fair competition and democratic principles, but also a strategic interest of the state,” it was emphasized.

Voting in the Senate

The amendment to the copyright law, adopted by the Sejm, implements the EU directive on remuneration for the use of works – including articles – by search engines, social media and streaming platforms.

The regulations introduce a new concept of exclusive right, which introduces the issue of remuneration from Google, Meta (Facebook) and Microsoft (e.g. the Bing search engine) for the use of content prepared by the media.

According to the wording of the regulations voted on by the MPs, the media, i.e. publishers, both small and large, are to establish the rules and the amount of remuneration with the technology giants themselves. Directly or through the intermediation of collective management organizations. Experience from other countries has shown that this is a long and difficult process, hence the amendment by the MP from the Left, Daria Gosek-Popiołek, which assumes a certain facilitation. Namely, if no agreement is reached within three months from the submission of the application to start negotiations, the parties may apply to the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection for mediation. If mediation does not bring results within three months, the President Office of Competition and Consumer Protection could establish the terms of remuneration by his decision.

In addition, there was a proposal to precisely define when a publisher is entitled to remuneration and for large technology corporations to be obliged to provide publishers with data to determine its amount. The amendments proposed by Daria Gosek-Popiołek responded to an appeal by publishers addressed to MPs and senators.

However, the MPs from the Civic Coalition, Third Way and Confederation rejected the aforementioned amendments of the Left, which introduced the changes to the bill that the publishers had called for. Now they are to return to the Senate

Main image source: Shutterstock

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