Important changes in Greek Copyright Law

24/11/2022 Transposition of the EU Directives (EU) 2019/789, (EU) 2019/790 and 2006/115/EC.

After a long-waiting period, the Greek Government passed the draft law, with the title “Setting rules on the exercise of copyright and related rights to certain online broadcasts of broadcasting organisations and retransmissions of television and radio programs, while maintaining a higher level of protection of copyright and related rights in the digital single market and the right of public lending and the reproduction of additional copies by non – profit libraries or archives’’, which transposes into Greek law the EU Directives (EU) 2019/789, (EU) 2019/790 and 2006/115/EC and brings certain additional amendments to Laws 2121/1993 and 4481/2017.

The passed draft law is structured in seven parts and the main changes, it brings, are briefly the following:

  • It introduces rules aiming at simplifying the licensing (clearance) of copyright and related rights in works and other protected subject-matter contained in broadcasts of certain types of television and radio programs, for facilitating the wider cross-border (in various member states) transmission of these programs via online services.
  • It introduces exemptions (by introducing new provisions or partially modifying the existing ones) for text and data mining for the purposes of scientific research carried out by research organizations and cultural heritage institutions, for the digital use of works, for example, during examinations or teaching activities carried out under the responsibility of educational establishments (through the introduction of a system of fair remuneration), for the creation of copies of works by cultural heritage institutions for the purpose of their preservation, and for certain uses of non-commercially available works by cultural heritage institutions.
  • It recognizes a new related right for press publishers of press publications (by granting two new absolute and exclusive powers) for the online uses of their press publications by information society service providers, while at the same time grants the authors with a right of receiving, for their works, incorporated in the abovementioned press publications, an appropriate share of the revenues that press publishers receive for such uses. This right is non-transferrable, allowing only its management by Collective Management Organizations.
  • It recognizes that providers of online content-sharing service provider (e.g. YouTube), when providing public access to works protected by copyright law that are uploaded by users, perform an act of communication to the public or an act of making available to the public such works and therefore it introduces an obligation of these providers to obtain an authorization from the rightsholders of such rights. At the same time, it provides the restrictive conditions under which these providers shall not be liable, if no authorization is granted, and introduces an obligation for providers to put in place an effective and expeditious complaint and redress mechanism in the event of infringement, as well as an obligation to inform the users of their terms and conditions of use of such works.
  • It amends or introduces a series of provisions with the aim of strengthening the position of the authors and in particular: a) the provisions relating to the remuneration of authors in cases of exploitation of their works by third parties under relevant contracts are partially amended, in order to be ensured that the authors receive appropriate and proportionate remuneration, while at the same time the possibility of granting non-exclusive licenses for free is regulated for the first time; b) an obligation of transparency is established for the authors’ benefit, so that they are entitled to obtain sufficient information concerning the exploitation and promotion of their works and the revenues and remuneration resulting therefrom; c) the right of authors to receive additional remuneration in cases where the remuneration originally agreed turns out to be disproportionately low compared to all the subsequent relevant revenues derived from the exploitation of the works is granted; d) an alternative dispute resolution arising from the above obligations of transparency and additional remuneration is introduced; and e) the right of the author to revoke, in whole or in part, a contract of transfer or a contract/license for exclusive exploitation or to withdraw their exclusive character, where there is a lack of exploitation of the respective works is regulated for the first time (this right, however, does not apply to cinematographic and audiovisual works in general).
  • It replaces the absolute and exclusive right of authors and related rights holders to authorize or prohibit the public lending of their works/protected subject matters with a fair remuneration right.

For more information you may contact our partner and head of IP department, Pigi Konstantinou.