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  • Laurens Kasteleijn

Creative achievements better protected by law

Updated: May 22, 2023

May 2023 by Art Law Services

From now onwards, in the Netherlands, creative achievements of creators and performing artists will be better protected by law. Minister Weerwind for Legal Protection and State Secretary Uslu for Culture and Media have tightened up the Copyright Contract Law Act of 2015 (Wet auteurscontractenrecht) for this purpose.

The amended law strengthens the negotiating position of creators and performing artists (such as writers, photographers, composers, musicians and actors) vis-à-vis their operators (producers, broadcasters and publishers).

For example, to enable the publication of a book, the author enters into a contract with a publisher. For example, it may be agreed in the contract that the copyright is transferred or that permission is given for exploitation. An evaluation often shows that the maker is the weaker party when granting such a so-called exploitation authority. That is why the law is being amended accordingly.

Fair compensation

The law makes it possible for creators and performing artists to collectively negotiate a fair remuneration for granting exploitation rights. The maker or artist can terminate a contract if the operator does not (or no longer) publish the work or performance. Proof of non-performance no longer needs to be demonstrated.

From now on, operators who receive public money can join a disputes committee. If makers have a conflict with an operator, they can come to a solution in an accessible way through such a committee.

Video on demand

Filmmakers and performers agree to make collective contractual arrangements with film producers and operators about appropriate remuneration for video on demand. The fair remuneration must be in proportion to how often a film work is streamed. The agreements are supported by the Minister and State Secretary with legislation and policy.

The Council of Ministers has agreed to send the bill to the Council of State for advice. The text of the bill and the advice of the Council of State will be made public when it is submitted to the House of Representatives.

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