We discovered that most of these laws are drafted in such a narrow way that they prevent educational activities that take place everyday in schools all over Europe.
To understand whether this is truly the case, we have analysed 15 educational scenarios, such as showing a poem in class, under the copyright laws of 15 European countries.
Here are some unfair limitations due to outdated copyright laws:
• Some educational exceptions are only applicable to formal education, meaning that museums, libraries and other providers of non-commercial education cannot use protected materials in their educational programmes.
• Some laws exclude certain types of works from the scope of the exception, reducing the number of resources available for teaching and the type of educational activities permitted (e.g. some countries do not allow the performance of a dramatic work or the screening of a film in class).
• Some laws restrict the extent or degree to which a work can be used for educational purposes, preventing the use of entire works, namely short works (e.g. individual articles and short videos) and images (e.g. artworks and photographs).
• Some laws treat educational activities differently based on the rights or technologies involved. For example, in Italy and in the Netherlands a teacher can screen a film from a DVD, but cannot show a film from YouTube.