Mollet calls for government u-turn on copyright

Mollet calls for government u-turn on copyright

Publishers Association c.e.o. Richard Mollet has called on the government to reverse its copyright policy, saying that the rest of Europe is "incredulous" at its attitude.

Speaking today (21st May) at the Westminster Media Forum's seminar "Publishing 2013 ­ consolidation, e-lending and adding value to e-books", Mollet said that the Government needed to change its stance of looking to weaken copyright law at an EU level.

The PA chief told the seminar: "Along with authors, readers and the workforce, copyright policy is a central priority for publishers. However, we have a government which has earned a reputation in the EU for wishing to review and weaken the copyright laws. People we speak to in Europe are incredulous that the British government seems so ready to undermine the very legal edifice which underpins one of the most successful sectors of our economy."

Mollet said the Hargreaves Review of IP had failed to "provide any analysis or assessment about the impact of copyright directive changes on the British economy".

He added: "As the debate in Europe picks up now is the time for British ministers to perform a u-turn: they should reflect on the lack of evidence; signal to the Commission that they wish to call a halt on reform; and manoeuvre their stance to one which is supportive of British creators. They need to make crystal clear that until such time as there is a full assessment of the impact of the proposals there should be no pushing for new provisions for copyright at EU level."

Mollet also emphasised the central importance of copyright amid a rapidly changing publishing landscape, and said: "As a sector we have a very compelling positive proposition around our economic, social and cultural contribution."