The future of geo-blocking at risk in the EU audiovisual sector

Freedom of Artistic Expression and Cultural Policy Cultural Diversity EuroFIA FIA Campaigns and Solidarity News

The European group of FIA (EuroFIA) has cosigned a letter directed to all members of the European Parliament, aiming to safeguard the sustainability of European audiovisual content production, as well as cultural and linguistic diversity.

The letter, endorsed by an impressive coalition of 698 stakeholders within the audiovisual sector, calls on the Parliament to cast a decisive vote in plenary against a provision outlined in the own initiative IMCO Committee report. This provision advocates for the Commission to reassess the Geo-blocking regulation n. 2018/302 by 2025 and expand its scope to include audiovisual services.

Bolstered by the resolute support of consumer organizations, responding to the demands of their younger constituencies seeking unrestricted and ubiquitous access to content but largely ignoring the intricacies of content production across the 27 EU member States, this proposal, if sanctioned, could deal a severe blow to the financing of feature films and other audiovisual content in Europe.

These productions heavily depend on the ability to license content exclusively on a territorial basis. While content may be considered king, it risks being left exposed and vulnerable if it lacks the means to sustain itself, leaving consumers with an abundance of “Europuddings” and generic European productions, as well as content mass-produced and distributed by US studios.

The plenary vote is slated for the 12th or 13th of December. FIA urges all its European members to engage with their national MEPs, expressing their concerns.

You can access the joint statement of the film and audiovisual sector here.

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