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INDUSTRY / MARKET France / Europe

The French film and audiovisual industries sound the alarm about geoblocking


- 30 professional organisations are warning European deputies of the vital need to maintain the territorial exclusivity currently allowed to broadcasters

The French film and audiovisual industries sound the alarm about geoblocking

"Territorial exclusivity guarantees European cultural diversity: diversity in financing, the diversity of the works, diversity in authors’ wages, diversity of broadcast media, the diversity of audiences. It allows local European distributors, who also contribute greatly to pre-financing, to broadcast the works in an organised and sequenced manner on all territories, in close relation with audiences and their specific qualities."

Practically all professional organisations in the French film and audiovisual industry (authors, directors, producers, film editors-distributors, catalogue holders, technical industries, international sales agents, exhibitors, video editors and TV broadcasters) are calling for European deputies to hold back on reassessing the exception currently made for audiovisual services in the 2018 Regulations on Geoblocking. An exception threatened by own-initiative reports and opinion reports about its implementation that have been adopted by the European Parliament Committee on Legal Affairs and Internal Market Committee. 

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“The territoriality of rights, a pillar of copyright law, guarantees the diversity of creation, as well as the vitality of our industry’s economy,” underlines the joint press release. “It indeed allows rights holders to grant exclusivity to each broadcaster of a given European geographical zone. By excluding audiovisual services from the 2018 Regulations, Europe therefore fulfils an essential goal in cultural politics, and without preventing Europeans from accessing these works, thanks among other things to the portability of subscriptions when a citizen from one country travels to another European Union country.” 

In view of the forthcoming vote in plenary session on the own-initiative report of the Internal Market Committee, signatories therefore ask European deputies “to support the amendments that maintain the territorial exclusivity currently granted to broadcasters. Questioning it would be a grave political, economic and cultural error.” 

The press release was signed by the ARP - French Civil Society of Authors-Directors-Producers, the BLIC - Film Industries’ Liaison Office, the BLOC - Film Organisations’ Liaison Office, the API - French Association of Independent Producers, l’ACID - Association of Independent Cinema for its Diffusion, the UPC - Union of Cinema Producers, the SPI - French Union of Independent Producers, the SRF - French Directors’ Association, the FNEF - National Federation of Film Editors, DIRE - United Independent European Distributors, the SDI - Union of Independent Distributors, the FNCF - National Federation of French Cinemas, the SCARE - Union of Arthouse, Repertory and Experimental Cinemas, the GNCR - French National Association of Research Cinemas, Eurocinema, the ADEF - Association of Film Exporters, the SEDPA - Union of Audiovisual Programme Distribution Companies, the SEVN - Union of Digital Video Editors, the SFA - French Union of Performing Artists, the SCA - Association of Cinema Screenwriters, the FICAM - Federation of Cinema, Audiovisual and Multimedia Industries, the USPA - Audiovisual Production Trade Union, the SATEV - Union of Audiovisual Press Agencies, the SPIAC - Union of Audiovisual and Cinema Professionals, the SNAC - National Union of Authors and Composers, the SPECT - Union of Audiovisual Programmes Creative Producers, France Télévisions, Canal+, M6, the Procirep and the French Screenwriters Guild.

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(Translated from French)

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