Christian Engström, Pirat

30 augusti 2011

Official Silence on the Copyright Term Extension Request

Filed under: Copyright Term Extension,English,informationspolitik — Christian Engström @ 13:18

Still no response from EU officials on the request to stop copyright term extension

In April this year, I and 40 fellow Members of the European Parliament. tabled a request for renewed referral of the copyright term extension dossier. The aim is to give the European Parliament a chance to reconsider its decision from April 2009 to extend the copyright term for musical recordings from 50 to 70 years. You can read more about the background here.

So far, I have not received any official response from the European Parliament at all. Unofficially, I have learned that there are people behind the scenes who want to interpret the relevant rule in the Rules of Procedure so that the request is technically inadmissible. But officially, I haven’t heard anything.

I find this odd, and, quite frankly, a bit worrying. If the relevant bodies in the European Parliament do in fact think the request is inadmissible, they should at least give me an official answer, so that I can decide what to do next. It is now the end of August, and more than four months have passed since the request was tabled.

Today I heard another rumour that adds to my worries, namely that the Council of Ministers is to make a decision on the copyright term extension next week. It was a blocking minority in the Council  that prevented the term extension from becoming a reality in 2009, but since then Denmark has switched sides, and now supports the extension.

This means that the blocking minority is gone, and that the Council would approve the extension if they vote on it next week. But I should stress that it is only a rumour that it will be on next week’s agenda for the Council.

Can they do this, and go ahead and push through the decision even though there is a pending request in the European Parliament to re-open the dossier and let the parliament have another look at it?

Answer: I don’t know. The interpretation of the various rules of procedure in the EU are pretty much a mystery even to people who have spent years trying to understand them, and I am certainly not one of those people.

But if a decision is taken in the Council next week, before I have even received an official reply to the request I tabled in April, I would find that very remarkable indeed.

I will post updates on this blog as events unfold.


Andra som skriver om ämnet: Henrik Alexandersson

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7 kommentarer

  1. Anything is possible, Christian. Just look back how they wanted to pass the approval of software patents through some committee of ministers for fishing, knowingly using the fact, that those people know nothing about it and even don’t care. If there’s no clear interpretation of the EU procedures, be sure that the one which suits them best in this case will be used.

    BTW, don’t they have some legal timeout during which they are obliged to give some sort of answer to your request?

    P.S.: Did you watch the British TV series ”Yes, Minister” and ”Yes, Prime Minister”? If not, I suggest you do. The movie ”In the Loop” is also not bad.

    Kommentar av Jarda — 30 augusti 2011 @ 17:05

  2. Disturbing if they are going to silently ignore a request from 40+ MEPs like that. Doesn’t exactly instill faith in EU as a democratic project. 😦

    Kommentar av Mårten — 31 augusti 2011 @ 4:07

  3. @Mårten: EU isn’t a democratic project and never was. The only democratic element is the recent European Parliament, the rest is unelected bureaucracy.

    Kommentar av Jarda — 31 augusti 2011 @ 11:41

  4. Ni 40 som skrev på kan begära att ärendet sätts upp på föredragningslistan enligt regel 140:1. Då måste det ske en omröstning om huruvida ärendet ska sättas upp på föredragningslistan.

    Om man inte vill gå direkt på frågan om återremiss enligt regel 59, så kan man väl begära en särskilt debatt enligt regel 141 rörande presidiets arbete med återremissärenden.

    Gröna gruppen kan göra det, om inte man får ihop en regnbågskoalition av 40 ledamöter.

    Kommentar av Johan Tjäder — 1 september 2011 @ 15:13

  5. Unfortunately, the Rules of procedure is a strictly internal matter of the European parliament. There is no treaty regulations behind the renewed referral procedure. That means the Council have the option of confirming the earlier decision by parliament.

    Equally, there is no help to be found from the European Court of Justice, if the presidency does not comply with the Rules of procedure. However, reasonably (if there is such a thing as reason), a majority of MEPs should find it disturbing that the Rules of procedure can be ignored.

    I propose you request extraordinary debates regarding this issue until it’s put on the agenda. That way, it will be a matter of public record that you did not let the matter to rest. Blogging is wonderful, but perhaps not persistent. Also if you can make this issue a matter of discussion in session that it will be more problematic for the presidency to sit on this motion any longer.

    Kommentar av Johan Tjäder — 1 september 2011 @ 15:19

  6. @ Johan Tjäder:

    Thanks, that is good information even if it is not very encouraging.

    Kommentar av Christian Engström — 2 september 2011 @ 21:42

  7. TV4:s blogg ”politikerbloggen” är mest censurerat i Sverige. De tar bort allt som riktas mot högern, regeringen och deras politiker. TV4 är högerextremistiskt.

    Kommentar av Jalle — 10 september 2011 @ 17:24

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