New draft Copyright Act voted by the German deputies

By EDRi · July 18, 2007

(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

The second draft of the Copyright Act for the Information Society, including
amendments proposed by the legal committee of the Parliament, was voted on 5
July by the majority of the German Bundestag and sent to Bundersrat for

Although Brigitte Zypries (SPD), the Minister of Justice, expressed her
satisfaction for finally completing an important act, representatives of the
left party and the greens accuse the government of not taking into
consideration the interests of the educators and researchers, believing that
the right to private copy cannot be exerciced as long as DRM systems are in
place. Furthermore, they have shown concern for the fact that the new
version of the act does no longer include the clause that was considering
file sharing in P2P networks a minor offence.

The act is focused on compensation fees for private copies that can be
established independently by the industry and copyright representatives and
banning copies from “illegal sources”. Regulations have been included to
restrict electronic reading stations in museums and libraries.

Dr. Günter Krings, CDU MP, considers the Act should be further more amended
to allow only for copies of the original and spoke of “intelligent”
recording software as “legally tantamount to an illegal file-sharing
network”. In his opinion, “there must be an end to the freebie mentality in
our society.”

Jerzy Montag of the Greens expressed his opinion that while copyright
applies to everyone, no property right is absolute and that the offered by
the state “is limited by the rights of others.” He showed concern that
education and research have not been properly covered by the act. This
opinion is also shared by Jörg Tauss (SPD) and Carsten Müller (CDU), who
deal with education policy issues. They believe knowledge promoted by public
funding should also be made available to the public.

German parliament passes new Copyright Act (6.07.2007)

Fewer private copies, more copyright fees: an overview of the main
stipulations in the “second basket” of the amended Copyright Act (only in
German, 5.07.2007)