The European Commission on Wednesday said it had agreed how to move ahead in modernising copyright to protect authors and artists in the digital economy.
In a statement, the EU executive said it aimed to ensure copyright remained "fit for purpose" in the digital economy, which is expected to grow seven times faster than the overall European Union in coming years.
The Commission will "work for a modern copyright framework that guarantees effective recognition and remuneration of rights holders in order to provide sustainable incentives for creativity, cultural diversity and innovation," it said.
The aim is to give "greater access and a wider choice of legal offers to end users" while allowing new business models to emerge and combatting illegal offers and piracy.
To that end, the Commission will launch a dialogue with stakeholders in 2013 and decide by the end of the year whether legislative reforms are needed.
The Society of Audiovisual Authors, which represents some 120,000 screenwriters and film and TV directors, welcomed the move.
Some 16,000 people have signed an SAA petition to protect copyright in the digital age, including film-makers Wim Wenders, Ken Loach and Ettore Scola.
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