Limitations and Exceptions as Key Elements of the Legal Framework for Copyright in the European Union – Opinion on the Judgment of the CJEU in Case C-201/13 Deckmyn

12 Pages Posted: 15 Feb 2015 Last revised: 10 May 2016

See all articles by Jonathan Griffiths

Jonathan Griffiths

Queen Mary University of London, School of Law

Christophe Geiger

Université de Strasbourg - CEIPI

Martin Senftleben

VU University Amsterdam - Faculty of Law

Raquel Xalabarder

Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC)

Lionel A. F. Bently

University of Cambridge - Faculty of Law

Estelle Derclaye

University of Nottingham, School of law

Graeme B. Dinwoodie

Chicago-Kent College of Law

Thomas Dreier

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

Severine Dusollier

University of Namur; SciencesPo

Reto Hilty

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition; University of Zurich; Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich

P. Bernt Hugenholtz

University of Amsterdam, Institute for Information Law (IViR)

Marie-Christine Janssens

Leuven University (KU Leuven); KU Leuven - Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP)

Martin Kretschmer

University of Glasgow

Axel Metzger

Leibniz Universität Hannover

Alexander Peukert

Goethe University Frankfurt - Faculty of Law; Cluster of Excellence Normative Orders

Marco Ricolfi

University of Turin - Faculty of Law

Ole Andreas Rognstad

University of Oslo

Alain M. Strowel

Saint Louis University; University of Liege

Date Written: February 13, 2015

Abstract

In (C-201/13) Deckmyn v Vandersteen, the Court of Justice of the European Union has provided important guidance on the interpretation of the parody exception under the Information Society Directive and on the approach to be adopted to limitations and exceptions in European Union copyright law more generally. The judgment is the latest in a series of cases that, while harmonising the law, demonstrate that an exclusively restrictive reading of exceptions cannot be justified in the European legal order and that respect for fundamental rights, particularly the right to free expression, requires a fair balance to be struck between all interests and rights involved. The judgment in Deckmyn sparked a lively discussion among the members of the European Copyright Society. That discussion concerned not only the ruling on the parody exception itself, but also the case’s contribution to the Court’s developing jurisprudence on copyright exceptions and limitations more generally. This discussion led to the drafting of the Society’s “Limitations and Exceptions as Key Elements of the Legal Framework for Copyright in the European Union – Opinion on the Judgment of the CJEU in Case C-201/13 Deckmyn”. Taking the Judgment as a starting point, the Society considered that there are several things to be welcomed in Deckmyn. These include the Judgment’s further harmonisation and rationalisation of the structure of the law relating to exceptions and limitations, the adoption of a purposive, rather than a systematically restrictive, approach to exceptions (in this instance, to the exception for parody) and the acknowledgment of the need to accommodate the right to freedom of expression where appropriate. However, at the same time, members of the Society were also concerned about the potential uncertainty created by the accommodation of the principle of non-discrimination within the assessment of the “fair balance” between the interests of right-holders and users.

Keywords: copyright, European Union, exceptions, limitations, Court of Justice, parody, freedom of expression, harmonisation, discrimination

JEL Classification: K11

Suggested Citation

Griffiths, Jonathan and Geiger, Christophe and Senftleben, Martin and Xalabarder, Raquel and Bently, Lionel A. F. and Derclaye, Estelle and Dinwoodie, Graeme B. and Dreier, Thomas and Dusollier, Severine and Hilty, Reto and Hugenholtz, P. Bernt and Janssens, Marie-Christine and Kretschmer, Martin and Metzger, Axel and Peukert, Alexander and Ricolfi, Marco and Rognstad, Ole Andreas and Strowel, Alain M., Limitations and Exceptions as Key Elements of the Legal Framework for Copyright in the European Union – Opinion on the Judgment of the CJEU in Case C-201/13 Deckmyn (February 13, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2564772 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2564772

Jonathan Griffiths (Contact Author)

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

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

Christophe Geiger

Université de Strasbourg - CEIPI ( email )

11 rue du Maréchal Juin
BP 68
Strasbourg, 67046
France

HOME PAGE: http://www.ceipi.edu

Martin Senftleben

VU University Amsterdam - Faculty of Law ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Netherlands

HOME PAGE: http://www.rechten.vu.nl/senftleben

Raquel Xalabarder

Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) ( email )

Tibidabo Av. 39-43
08035 Barcelona, Barcelona 08035
Spain

Lionel A. F. Bently

University of Cambridge - Faculty of Law ( email )

10 West Road
Cambridge, CB3 9DZ
United Kingdom

Estelle Derclaye

University of Nottingham, School of law ( email )

Nottingham NG7 2RD
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/law2/staff/estelle.derclaye

Graeme B. Dinwoodie

Chicago-Kent College of Law ( email )

565 West Adams St.
Chicago, IL 60661
United States

Thomas Dreier

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology ( email )

Kaiserstraße 12
Karlsruhe, Baden Württemberg 76131
Germany

Severine Dusollier

University of Namur ( email )

8 rempart de la vierge
Namur, 5000
Belgium
+3281724760 (Phone)
+3281725202 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.fundp.ac.be/universite/personnes/page_view/01003580/

SciencesPo ( email )

Rue de l'Université 13
Paris
France

Reto Hilty

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition ( email )

Marstallplatz 1
Munich, Bayern 80539
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.ip.mpg.de

University of Zurich

Rämistrasse 74/7
Zürich, CH-8001
Switzerland

Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich

Munich, 80539
Germany

P. Bernt Hugenholtz

University of Amsterdam, Institute for Information Law (IViR) ( email )

P.O. Box 1030
Amsterdam, 1000 BA
Netherlands

Marie-Christine Janssens

Leuven University (KU Leuven) ( email )

Tiensestraat 41
Minderbroedersstraat 5
Leuven, B-3000
Belgium

KU Leuven - Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP) ( email )

Sint-Michielsstraat 6 box 3443
Leuven, 3000
Belgium

Martin Kretschmer

University of Glasgow ( email )

10 The Square
Glasgow, G12 8QQ
United Kingdom

Axel Metzger

Leibniz Universität Hannover ( email )

Institut fur Rechnungslegung und WP
Koenigsworther Platz 1
Hannover, 30167
Germany

Alexander Peukert

Goethe University Frankfurt - Faculty of Law ( email )

Frankfurt
Germany

Cluster of Excellence Normative Orders

Frankfurt
Germany

Marco Ricolfi

University of Turin - Faculty of Law ( email )

Italy

Ole Andreas Rognstad

University of Oslo ( email )

PO Box 6706 St Olavs plass
Oslo, N-0317
Norway

Alain M. Strowel

Saint Louis University ( email )

220 North Grand Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63103
United States

University of Liege

B-4000 Liege
Belgium

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