A couple of months ago the EU parliament adopted Article 13, and of the outcomes for this bill is how tech companies share revenue with creators on their platform, with YouTube in particular highlighted.
“Many of Parliament’s changes to the EU Commission’s original proposal aim to make certain that artists, notably musicians, performers and script authors, as well as news publishers and journalists, are paid for their work when it is used by sharing platforms such as YouTube or Facebook, and news aggregators such as Google News,” explained a statement on Article 13.
“I am very glad that despite the very strong lobbying campaign by the internet giants, there is now a majority in the full house backing the need to protect the principle of fair pay for European creatives,” added EU rapporteur Axel Voss at the time.
Now YouTube execs are starting to weigh in on Article 13 and the implications it will have in terms of copyright.
In particular YouTube head of Music, Lyor Cohen, weighed in on the subject with a newsletter published earlier this week.
“Let me be clear: we understand and support the intent of Article 13. We need effective ways for copyright holders to protect their content. But we believe that the current proposal will create severe unintended consequences for the whole industry,” wrote Cohen.
The YouTube exec explained that the Copyright Directive in Article 13 will have implications for creators who specialise in remixing, covering or borrowing music content on the platform. The Directive, Cohen continues, will force the company and creators to monitor copyright laws more stringently in order to ensure no content is infringed upon.
As such, creators that borrow content and repurpose it could be the most heavily affected if Article 13 is voted in come January next year.
To try to counter this, YouTube and its execs are now asking creators to pressure the EU to overturn their plans for Article 13.
With YouTube’s history on content monitoring divisive at best, perhaps there is some merit in what the company is saying. On the other hand, it could also be interpreted as them not wanting to deal with the added admin that Article 13 will entail.
Either way it should be interesting to see what happens in January next year when the EU makes its decision final.