Free Knowledge Advocacy Group EU publishes copyright reform paper

The image shows the logo of the Free Knowledge Advocacy Group EU - a circle of gold stars on a blue background, like the flag of the EU, with the group's name in the centre
Logo of the Free Knowledge Advocacy Group EU

The Free Knowledge Advocacy Group EU (FKAGEU), of which Wikimedia UK is a member, has this week published a paper on copyright reform across the European Union.

This is in response to the Report on the responses to the Public Consultation on the Review of the EU Copyright Rules and the draft white paper on a copyright policy for creativity and innovation in the European Union.

The position paper has already been shared with key members of the European Commission. The main recommendations from the paper are that:

  • The Commission should clarify the European copyright framework by harmonising legislation and creating a single EU Copyright Title
  • The Commission should ensure everyone has the liberty to freely use and share images taken in public spaces by introducing Freedom of Panorama universally (currently optional under Directive 2001/29/EC Article 5 Point 3.H)
  • The Commission should ensure that all works created by officials within the EU administration and institutions are open for use and re-use by everyone. Such works should hence not be subject to copyright protection.
  • The Commission should re-balance the current culturally and economically harmful mismatch between public commons and private property and close the “20th century gap” by shortening copyright terms to the minimum term possible under existing international treaties and conventions.

The FKAGEU is a grouping of European Wikimedia chapters and other open knowledge organisations from throughout the EU. The work has largely been co-ordinated by Dimitar Dimitrov, the movement’s Wikimedian in Brussels.

This landmark paper has been signed by 33 parties from 17 European countries, of which 16 are Wikimedia chapters, thematic organisations or user groups. You can see a full list of signing partners here.