• Only 1.6% of consumers have made a private copy of a CD or other musical medium, according to the Mazars study commissioned by DIGITALEUROPE and EURIMAG.

• The estimated revenue for the current digital licence fee is between 7 and 10 times higher than the actual damage caused by private copying in Spain.

Madrid, 22 September 2017.- The private copying of traditional physical formats is disappearing, now that the consumption of music and other content is being imposed through streaming on mobile phones, tablets or computers. In the last year, only 0.9% of Spaniards have copied a DVD of movies or series, only 1.6% have made a private copy of a musical medium and only 2.3% have made private copies of books and publications assimilated.

These are some of the findings of the study Impact of the private copying in Spain commissioned by DIGITALEUROPE, the association representing the technology industry in Europe, and EURIMAG, the association representing the image and printing industry in Europe, drawn up by the audit and consultancy firm Mazars on the Analysis and Research survey among 3,000 Spaniards aged 14 to 80. The aim of this study is to quantify the actual damage caused by private copying in Spain today, as consumer habits have changed considerably in recent years.

Of all respondents, only 1.6% (48 cases) made private copies of a physical music medium (CD or DVD). And less than 0.69% of all respondents would have bought the work if there were no possibility of making a private copy; that is, fewer than 21 users of 3,000 respondents stopped purchasing a disc because of private copying.

As for television fiction, cinema and documentaries, only 0.9% (28 cases) of the 3000 respondents copied a physical medium (DVD) in the last 12 months, with series being the most popular content of all. In this case, only 0.69% of respondents made a private copy of a film, series or documentary they would have bought if they had not been able to make a copy.

TV recording and book copying

These results show that the Internet is changing consumer habits when it comes to consuming digital content and copying, a practice that has virtually disappeared. Even the digital television or radio recording made possible by today's devices does not seem to be a threat, as the number of recordings is also very small.

As regards music, only 4.1% of respondents recorded a musical content (programme, video clip or live concert) in the last year of television, a practice that fell to 0.9% in the case of radio recording. In the case of series, films or documentaries, only 6.8% of respondents recorded some type of content in the last year via digital television (not through the Internet).

The private copying of books and similar publications is no exception to this trend, and a low percentage of users make copies (2.3%). Only 69 people out of the 3000 people surveyed (2.3%) made some kind of private copy of a book or similar publication and only 1.61% of the total would have bought the work if there were no possibility of making such reproduction.

Levy collections between 7 and 10 times higher than the actual damage

The study's findings show that the number of users making private copies of works protected by intellectual property rights is small, so the situation has changed a great deal since analogue levies were applied. Current data indicate that it is no longer justified for 100% of users to have to pay for the marginal behaviour of a minority.

The digital industry has asked the government to base the new levies system on a new private copying harm study, similar to the ones it commissioned in 2012,2013,2014 and 2015 According to their estimate, the damage resulting from private copying has been declining year on year, from an estimated €18.7 million in 2012 to €11.9 million in 2015.

However, the fees approved by the Executive result in overcompensation by consumers to rights holders. The expected sales of the devices subject to charges show that the amount to be collected annually with the new digital fee is more than EUR 72 million (EUR 50 million if account is taken of any compensation exemptions by business users and the public administration).

“The study reveals that only a marginal number of people still make private copies of copyright-protected works, and there is no evidence that digital devices pose a threat to intellectual property rights. On the contrary, digital devices and the digitisation of creative works enable consumers to access more content legally and to adopt new consumption habits – such as streaming music or movies. It’s therefore necessary to review the current private copying levy system," declares Cecilia Bonefeld-Dahl, Director General of DIGITALEUROPE.

“We expect from the Government to conduct out its own independent harm study and align the current fees with the actual damage caused by private copying," adds Maxime Furkel, President of EURIMAG.



DIGITALEUROPE represents the digital technology industry in Europe. Among its 61 corporate members and 37 professional associations are some of the largest IT, telecommunications and consumer electronics companies in the world, as well as national associations across Europe. Its mission is to foster a business, political and regulatory environment that fulfils its vision: one European Union that fosters and supports the digital technology industries, thriving from the jobs, innovation and economic benefits this companies generate and the social challenges they face.



EURIMAG is the leading organisation representing the printing and IT imaging industry in Europe. Its members are the leading manufacturers of printers, scanners and multifunctional devices, directly employing about 100,000 people. EURIMAG aims to actively promote a European policy framework that ensures the competitiveness of the image and printing industry in Europe, with a special focus on copyright fees, one of the most pressing issues for the sector.


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BRUSSELS (November 12th, 2015) - Eurimag, the association representing the European imaging and printing industry, welcomes the judgement of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in the case C-572/13 Hewlett-Packard Belgium vs. Reprobel, which ruled that the Belgian reprography levy collection system is incompatible with the EU Copyright Directive.

The intention of the current EU framework is to compensate authors for the legitimate reproduction of their works. On top of that, the Belgian system also compensated publishers with the same amount which is paid to authors. This has led to a situation where  Belgian consumers have paid at least twice the amount than they should have in levies. The Court has declared that no compensation is payable to publishers, but only to authors.

Furthermore, the Court also ruled that the Belgian system, which uses printer speed as the calculating factor for the levy, is not in line with EU law. The CJEU recognizes that the maximum speed or technical capacity of the device is not a valid criterion to determine the amount of the compensation, and that a proper distinction must be made between copying by consumers and by business users.

The Court also provides that authors must not be “overcompensated” and that no levy can be imposed in case an additional system of compensation by mean of operator fees is available.

Eurimag is confident that today’s CJEU ruling is a first step towards building a modernised Belgian reprography system which is fully aligned with EU law and provides a fair balance between the interests of Belgian consumers and companies on the one hand, and authors on the other hand.

 Under the current Belgium system, when a customer buys a multifunctional printer, there is a contribution for the reproduction of copyright-protected works included in the price (levy). When you compare this contribution with other EU countries, the Belgian users  pay more than 3 times the EU average. And on top of that, they are requested to pay operator fees. So definitively, this judgment is good news for consumers and business users in Belgium. 


The Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) acknowledges that the application of the 'private copying levy' to reproduction media acquired by undertakings and professionals for purposes other than private copying is not compatible with EU law.


October 21st 2010, Brussels – CJEU ruled in the Padawan Case that the concept of fair compensation is a Community concept that must be interpreted uniformly in all Member States.

Irena Bednarich, President of the European Imaging Association (EURIMAG) declared:

"Today's ruling is a landmark: it clearly states that copyright levies claims on devices used by businesses are illegal.

We at EURIMAG do not challenge the fact that right holders should be compensated when consumers make legal private copies of their works, but we firmly believe that the amounts claimed by Collecting Societies should reflect reality.

Finally, the Court clarified that tariffs should be fair. European consumers cannot be asked to pay for copies they are not making.

We urge the European Commission and Members of the European Parliament to seize the opportunity provided by the forthcoming Collective Rights Management Directive (CRM) to address the shortcomings of the current copyright levy systems.

This ruling is a first step towards the long awaited free circulation of ICT products within the EU."


Copyright levies affect innovative products in an increasingly disproportionate way.
New features are added, technology is improved and consumer prices decrease. Yet the levy rate continuously increases, eventually exceeding the retail price.
Economically such a system cannot be maintained!
Every Member State applies different criteria to calculate levies for the same device when it crosses an internal market border.
Crossing an EU internal border still requires complex and costly administrative procedures. Products need to be reclassified, import/export declarations have to be completed and levies have to be paid in the country of origin and country of destination.
There is no internal market!
Everytime a product crosses an EU internal market border, a different levy applies.
Levies claimed in various EU Member States on an all-in-one inkjet printer vary between €178,84 and €0,64 cent. On exactly the same product!

EURIMAG, l’Association Européenne de groupes d’Imagerie, soutient le principe selon lequel les détenteurs de droits se doivent d’être équitablement indemnisés pour l’utilisation de leurs oeuvres.


EURIMAG, de European Imaging Association, onderschrijft het principe waardoor aan de rechthebbenden een billijke vergoeding dient toegekend te worden voor het gebruik van hun werken.


EURIMAG, the European Imaging Association, fully supports the principle that rightsholders need to be fairly compensated for the use of their works. Fair compensation of rightsholders should however:

  • not weaken the competitiveness of the Belgian market
  • not penalise Belgian consumers by limiting their choice in available products and technology
  • not prevent products from freely circulating within the European Internal Market
EURIMAG fully supports fair compensation of rights holder for private copies made of their works. However, it is concerned by the way copyright levy systems are implemented across Europe. EURIMAG believes that copyright levy systems should be FAIR, TRANSPARENT, PROPORTIONATE, ALIGNED and MODERN.

Directive 2001/29/EC on the harmonisation of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society (the “Copyright Directive”) sets forth several important rules relating to private copying and “fair compensation”. This analysis, prepared by the Copyright Levies Reform Alliance and its network of national counsels, looks at how 20 EU Member States with private copy levies regimes have implemented (or are proposing to implement) these rules.

Each country analysis provides an unofficial translation of the relevant national rules implementing Copyright Directive Article 5.2(b). Each analysis also provides background on the functioning of the national levy regimes in the various markets, and explores how the Copyright Directive’s levies-related provisions are being applied in practice.

Economic Impact Study Private Copying Levies on Digital Equipment and Media Nathan Study.

The Copyright Levies Reform Alliance (CLRA) produced 4 studies supporting the case for the phasing out / freezing of levies:

  • The “DRM-Enabled Online Content Services in Europe and the USA (DRM Uptake Study, October 2005)
  • The “Analysis of National Levy Schemes and the EU Copyright Directive Legal” (Legal Study, February 2006)
  • The (Levies Collection Study, April 2006)iv) The Nathan Associates Economic Impact Study (Economic Study, April 2006)

The Printing Group, a coalition of the leading European manufacturers ofprinting devices consisting of Epson, Konica Minolta, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Canon, Lexmark and Brother, has been founded to support a modern copyright legislation in the EU member states.


Berlin, 17. Januar 2007 - Deutschland braucht ein zukunftsgerichtetes, modernes und faires Urheberrecht, das den Interessen der Anwender, den Anbietern von IT-Geräten wie auch denen der Urheber Rechnung trägt. Dazu zählt eine für alle Beteiligten befriedigende Neuregelung der Vergütung von Privatkopien, also von Vervielfältigungen, die ausschließlich zu privaten Zwecken angefertigt werden. Die führenden Anbieter von PCs, Druckern und Multifunktionsgeräten in Deutschland, Acer, Brother, Canon, Dell, Epson, Fujitsu Siemens Computers, HP, Kyocera Mita, Lexmark, Lenovo, Oki, Sharp, Toshiba und für Intel, haben sich zu einer Initiative für eine rasche, zeitgemäße und vernünftige Reform des Urheberrechts zusammen geschlossen.

  • What are copyright levies?
  • Who administers copyright levies?
  • Distribution of copyright levies
  • Digital rights management and digital music sales
  • Copyright levies and the notion of harm based on private copying
  • The criteria for establishing whether a levy is imposed on particular equipment or media
  • Copyright levies and convergence
  • The internal market and differences in copyright levy systems
  • Transparency for stakeholders
  • Stakeholder opinions
Market Value of Private Copying Levies on Digital Equipment and Media in Europe (Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and Sweden)
This study provides an overview of online content services that are protected by digital rights management (DRM) software and are available in Europe and in the United States. DRM technology provides copy protection against piracy and allow for usage rules that vary by service and consumers’ needs. The scope of the study includes online music services and ringtones.