Copyright in the Age of Online Access: Alternative Compensation Systems in EU Law

Copyright in the Age of Online Access: Alternative Compensation Systems in EU Law

Copyright in the Age of Online Access: Alternative Compensation Systems in EU Law

By João Pedro Quintais
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Kluwer Law International
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Information Law Series Volume 40

Copyright in the Age of Online Access examines pragmatic legal solutions that enable Internet users to access works in the digital environment by exploring the flexibilities in EU copyright law in search of a consistent regulation of non-commercial online use. In addition to proving virtually impossible, online enforcement of copyright may be undesirable because it risks encroaching upon fundamental rights and freedoms. However, the problem remains that creators are often not fairly remunerated for the online use of their works. This book addresses the need for legalisation schemes that favour remunerated access over exclusivity and enforcement for large-scale online use by individuals, while assuring remuneration to rights holders and promoting the development of the information society.

What’s in this book:

This study investigates whether and to what extent these legal schemes (referred to as alternative compensation systems) are admissible under EU copyright law and consistent with its objectives, responding to such questions as the following in depth:

  • What existing copyright schemes provide an alternative to the exclusive right in copyright law?
  • What online rights apply to the activities of Internet users?
  • What types of models exist for the legalisation of online use of copyright works?
  • How can the public interest shape the scope of protection of copyright?
  • Can and should we legalise non-commercial file sharing and online use in EU copyright law?

This book carefully analyses these questions in light of EU primary law, relevant directives (with a focus on the InfoSoc Directive), case law (especially that of the CJEU) and legal literature in the field of copyright. The analysis culminates with a proposed blueprint for a compensated limitation for non-commercial individual use that is consistent with EU copyright law.

How this will help you:

Through historic and normative examination of access and remuneration models for mass use of copyright works, this book helps practitioners navigate the maze of rules that govern the online use of copyright works in EU law and gain awareness of legal alternatives to the exclusive rights. As a thoroughly researched and balanced response to the urgent need to rethink EU copyright law in light of its lack of social acceptance and technological adequacy, this book is of inestimable value to lawyers, policymakers and scholars in the field, as well as to interest groups involved in discussions for reform and modernisation of EU digital copyright law.

ISBN: 9789041186676
Pages: 504
SKU: 9041186670
ETA: Available: Item ships in 3-5 Business Days


Figures and Tables


Note to the Readers

Chapter 1 Introduction: Challenges for Copyright in the Online Environment

Chapter 2 Copyright Rewind: Precedents for Compensation Systems

Chapter 3 Alternative Compensation Systems: Taxonomy of Legalisation Proposals

Chapter 4 Between Rights and Limitations: Mapping the Space for the Legalisation of the Online Use of Copyright Works

Chapter 5 Copyright Reform: Admissibility of Legalisation under the Three-Step Test and the Objectives of EU Copyright Law

Chapter 6 Summary and Conclusions: Towards Access and Remuneration


Primary Sources: Legal Texts

Secondary Sources

Table of Cases



  • Extensive treatment of restrictions on exclusive rights in EU copyright law.
  • Comprehensive description of the rights and limitations applicable to the online activities of end-users under EU law. ¿
  • Thorough historic and normative examination of access and remuneration models for mass use of copyright works.
  • Detailed analysis of the admissibility of legalising non-commercial online use of copyright works in EU law.
  • Reform proposals for the regulation of non-commercial online use. ¿


  • Navigate the maze of rules that govern the online use of copyright works in EU law.
  • Assess the legal status of the activities of Internet users, including areas of legal uncertainty.
  • Understand the range of possible interpretations of rights and limitations in EU copyright law, and their implications.
  • Gain awareness of legal alternatives to the exclusive right, based on models of access and remuneration, and how they can be implemented in EU law.


João Pedro studied Law at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa. He subsequently conducted Post Graduate Studies at the Law School of the Universidade de Lisboa, first in Commercial Companies Law and then in Information Society Law, Copyright and Electronic Commerce. He went on to take an LL.M. degree in Intellectual Property and Competition Law at the Munich Intellectual Property Law Center in Germany (Ohem Prize recipient).

Prior to starting his academic career, João Pedro worked extensively in the intellectual property and information technology areas in Portugal, both as a lawyer and as legal counsel for a multinational software house. He has lectured in a number of courses, seminars and conferences in the areas of intellectual property, information technology and privacy.

From 2012 until 2016 he conducted is Ph.D. research at the Institute for Information Law (IViR), University of Amsterdam. From August to December 2014 he was a Visiting Researcher at UC Berkeley, School of Law. João Pedro is currently a Postdoctoral researcher at the IViR, where he focuses on information law matters, including intellectual property and the application of copyright in the online environment.