More room for supervisory authority for the collective management of copyright

Minister for Legal Protection Dekker wants to tighten up supervision of the collective management of copyright. For that purpose, the Supervisory Authority for Copyright and Neighbouring Rights will get broader powers to take action – where necessary – against collective and independent management organisations (such as Vereniging Buma, Stichting Stemra and Sena). The supervisory authority monitors the procedures of management organisations that collect and distribute payments on behalf of, for example, authors, composers, artists and film producers for the use of their work.

This is evident from a legislative bill submitted to the House of Representatives.


'My motto is "more where necessary and less where possible". The supervisory authority should be able to take firm action, but we should prevent unjustified inconvenience caused by supervising management organisations. We have to strike the right balance, and that’s what we have focused on in this legislative bill.'

Collective management is important for both the beneficiaries and the users of work protected by copyright, such as a book or film, but also a photo or a piece of music. It is difficult for a composer to keep track of public performances of his or her work and collect the payment for this. A management organisation will take care of those tasks. The advantage for users is that they can make their payments to a single point of contact.
At the moment, the supervisory authority sometimes still has insufficient options to take fast and firm action when a management organisation does not do its job properly. An example of this is when the amounts due to beneficiaries are not paid out as a consequence of incorrect policy. The supervisory authority’s current procedure for intervention is too laborious. That is why, in the future, the supervisory authority will be able to give instructions immediately in urgent cases. It will also be able to impose a fine more quickly, if it turns out that a management organisation has committed a similar infringement before.
Moreover, it will be able to carry out risk-based supervision. Tightened-up supervision will offer opportunities to act timely when, for example, there are doubts about the policy or procedures of a management organisation. When there is a limited risk, the burden can be reduced. Finally, the supervisory authority will be authorised to assess the integrity and suitability of managers.