Lawfulness for Users in European Copyright Law: Acquis and Perspectives
This article analyses the emerging dynamics of the concepts of lawful user, lawful use, and lawful access in European Copyright law. It aims to demonstrate that these concepts, which are part of the EU copyright law acquis, have the potential to provide a fair solution to the controversies regarding the “rights” and “duties” of users in European copyright law. The article proposes to establish a legislative dynamic definition of lawful use in European Copyright Law. The concept must be clarified and given a broad meaning in order to cover both uses which are authorized by the right holders, but are also not restricted by law, by taking into account the legal ideals of fairness and reasonableness. This change must be accompanied by the recognition of all copyright exceptions as jus cogens and the establishment of effective procedural mechanisms to safeguard the enjoyment of lawful users’ rights.