Digital Higher Education and Copyright Law in the Age of Pandemic - The Hungarian Experience
30 Pages Posted: 14 Sep 2022 Last revised: 16 Dec 2022
Date Written: September 13, 2022
Digital technologies have triggered significant methodological, business and behavioural changes in higher education. The increasing gap in the needs and possibilities of digital learning and education was partially due to the rigid and outdated copyright norms, which were designed for an analogue environment. The legislation of the European Union has accepted Directive 2019/790 on Copyright and Related Rights in the Digital Single Market (CDSM Directive) in 2019. As a part of this reform, the EU has amended (broadened) the scope of educational limitations and exceptions. Life has abruptly changed with the global outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic. It has led to the closure of the premises of educational institutions and libraries. The online access, use and sharing of copyright protected materials turned out to be the only way to continue education in the early lockdown period and continues to be a significant way of learning in the “new normal”. Hungary had to face the same challenges of the pandemic. Importantly enough, this country was the first to implement Article 5 of the CDSM Directive in April 2020. The empirical analysis of the new copyright regime and the effects of pandemic on higher education (and educational limitations and exceptions) is nevertheless still missing. This paper intends to fill in this gap. First, the paper shortly introduces the novelties of the CDSM reform related to educational limitations and exceptions in general and in Hungary, and discusses how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected higher education throughout 2020-2022. Second, it includes the empirical analysis of the awareness, perceptions and use practises of students, educators and librarians of the University of Szeged with respect to digital (distance and online) learning and teaching in the pandemic.
Keywords: digital higher education, COVID-19 pandemic, copyright law, Article 5 CDSM Directive, Hungary
JEL Classification: I23, L00, K10, K11, K19, K33, K39, O30, O33, O34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation