IMPALA's open letter to all members of the European Parliament

Brussels, 28th March 2019

Dear Member of the European Parliament,

We are writing following Tuesday's vote in favour of the copyright directive.

We are small, medium and micro independent music companies and self-releasing artists across Europe, who account for 80% of new music releases.  It is frustrating for us that this vital debate was often portrayed as a turf battle between competing big business lobbies.

We thank all parliamentarians who participated in this crucial vote. All points of view nourish the debate.  

To those who voted yes, thank you for standing up under considerable pressure. A landmark text has now been adopted. Our members and their artists have been promoting user generated models since they signed a deal with Napster nearly twenty years ago and this modernisation is much needed. 

To parliamentarians who chose to oppose the trilogue mandate, or who abstained, we respect your decision. We are ready to exchange further on this directive and its implementation to ensure it delivers a fairer online market for creators, citizens and platforms. 

We look forward to member states confirming their previous decision in favour of the mandate and to working with all stakeholders on the implementation of this essential text.  

Tuesday's result sets a great precedent for Europe, who is really leading the way worldwide towards a fair and sustainable online environment.  Below you will find IMPALA's statement welcoming the adoption of the directive. 

Yours sincerely,

Helen

 

IMPALA statement

European parliament approves copyright reform in landmark vote

Strasbourg, 26 March 2019

The European parliament voted today to bring copyright rules up to date. 348 MEPs voted in favour, 274 against and 36 abstained. 

The position of creators and citizens will be reinforced in their dealings with platforms. In addition, authors and performers will benefit from new provisions regarding remuneration and contracts. The innovation friendly package also establishes lighter rules for small start ups. 

Helen Smith commented: "This is a landmark day for Europe¹s creators and citizens, and a significant step towards a fairer internet. Platforms facilitate a unique relationship between artists and fans, and this will be given a boost as a result of this directive. It will have a ripple effect world wide."

The next step is for member states to re-confirm the text. The directive will then need to be implemented at national level, within a two year period from when it is officially published. 

After an earlier positive vote in September, Google, YouTube and others launched a massive and sustained campaign against article 13 (17 in the final text), including with YouTubers who exerted considerable pressure on public opinion. In the weeks before the vote, many artists spoke out in favour of the directive, culminating with the powerful Just Say Yes campaign. 

Helen Smith concluded: "The fact that the artists spoke amid so much anti-copyright harassment online is impressive. Parliamentarians did not let themselves be intimated and had the courage to vote this text through. Thanks to all who were involved in crafting such a balanced outcome. It is now for member states to reconfirm their approval of the directive."

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