The European Independent distributors of audiovisual programs unanimously call on MEPs to back the health of the TV industry and therefore not to question the existing exception for audiovisual services in the 2018 Geo-blocking Regulation.
Indeed, the territoriality of rights guarantees the economic health of the audiovisual sector because it allows each broadcaster in each European geographical area to enjoy broadcasting exclusivity. Without exclusivity or premiere, no broadcaster will take the risk of investing in programs (co-production, pre-acquisition, or acquisition then in localisation costs) which would be available online at any time, depriving them of any event programming. Eliminating geo-blocking would reduce the estimated and additional distribution revenues from European works, leading to lower pre-sales investment in the development and production of works resulting in an important decline in the number and diversity of works produced.
The exclusion of audiovisual services from the 2018 Geo-blocking Regulation allows Europe to pursue its objective of dissemination of European works by backing independent production – including for example the Creative Europe Call European Slate Development - which would be inconsistent with any questioning of the existing exception. And the Portability Regulation (EU) 2017/1128 already allows subscribers residing in one Member State to access their paid-for subscriptions to online content services when temporarily present in another Member State; meaning that audiovisual works are already accessible in member countries of the European Union within a framework preserving the business model of the audiovisual sector.
This is why we ask MEPs to support the amendments which preserve the territorial licensing exclusivity currently granted to broadcasters.
ECAD Contact: Anne Littardi, email@example.com