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Unsticking the Centre-Piece – The Liberation of European Copyright Law?

Journal of Intellectual Property Information Technology and e-Commerce Law, Vol. 87, 2010

9 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2011 Last revised: 27 Jan 2011

Jonathan Griffiths

Queen Mary University of London, School of Law

Date Written: January 24, 2011

Abstract

Following European legislative initiatives in the field of copyright limitations and exceptions, policy flexibilities formerly available to member states has been greatly diminished. The law in this area is increasingly incapable of accommodating any expansion in the scope of freely permitted acts, even where such expansion may be an appropriate response to changes in social and technological conditions. In this article, the causes of this problem are briefly canvassed and a number of potential solutions are noted. It is suggested that one such solution – the adoption of an open, factor-based model similar to s 107 of the United States’ Copyright Act – has not received the serious attention it deserves. The fair use paradigm has generally been dismissed as excessively unpredictable, contrary to international law and/or culturally alien. Drawing on recent fair use scholarship, it is argued here that these disadvantages are over-stated and that the potential for the development of a European fair use model merits investigation.

Keywords: Copyright, Exceptions, Limitations, Three-Step-Test, Fair Use, Wittem Group

Suggested Citation

Griffiths, Jonathan, Unsticking the Centre-Piece – The Liberation of European Copyright Law? (January 24, 2011). Journal of Intellectual Property Information Technology and e-Commerce Law, Vol. 87, 2010 . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1747177 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1747177

Jonathan Griffiths (Contact Author)

Queen Mary University of London, School of Law ( email )

67-69 Lincoln’s Inn Fields
London, WC2A 3JB
United Kingdom

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