European Parliament Approves Article 13 of EU Copyright Directive

September 12, 2018

Today, the European Parliament approved the language of Article 13 of the European Copyright Directive. 751 members (MEPs) voted on the directive, with 438 voting in favor, 226 against and 39 abstained.

 Article 13 would impose liability on digital platforms that make available large amounts of copyrighted content uploaded by their users, therebysubstantiallyeliminating the safe harbor loophole that unfairly allowed these services to profit from the use of copyrighted content.  The legislation will require these digital services to either obtain licenses from copyright owners or to utilize content filtering technologies to remove identified unauthorized content. 

One part of the wider Copyright Directive, Article 13 will make online platforms more accountable and will set stronger standards for music creators online, providing greater protection and fairer compensation.

The vote, however, does not make Article 13 or the overall Copyright Directive law. Rather, it permits the EU Parliament to enter final negotiations with the Member States (the EU Council) to reach a final text, with the reported goal of becoming passed European legislation sometime in 2019.