01 | 09 | 2020

European Commission Published Reports on Results of Applying Memoranda of Understanding Focused on Combating Counterfeit Goods on the Internet

Illustration: Approved by the European Commission

The European Commission published on its website a Report on the functioning of the 2011 Memorandum of understanding on the sale of counterfeit goods on the internet and a Report on the functioning of the 2018 Memorandum of understanding on online advertising and intellectual property rights.

The 2011 Memorandum of understanding was signed by online platforms, rights holders and associations within the industry, as a basis for future dialogue and cooperation between relevant stakeholders in order to combat the supply and sale of products infringing intellectual property rights in the online market. After the first evaluation of the results of its implementation, the Memorandum was revised in 2016, when three key indicators were added, according to which the signatories to this Memorandum submit data that are important for further analysis and monitoring. This is the third report on the functioning of the said Memorandum (the first two reports were published in 2013 and 2017). The report points out the importance of continuous cooperation and exchange of information between the signatories of the Memorandum with the aim of removing counterfeit goods from the Internet market and provides an overview of the practices reported by the signatories of the Memorandum in the reporting period. The Memorandum is an example of good cooperation between stakeholders in the framework of non-legal measures aimed at combating counterfeiting and piracy, and at the same time contributes to a better understanding of how the Internet market works and the challenges it poses to the intellectual property protection system.

The Report on the functioning of the Memorandum of Understanding from 2018, which aimed to reduce the appearance of announcements (advertisements) on websites and mobile applications that infringe intellectual property rights, shows that this Memorandum has greatly affected the consciousness of producers of legitimate products about how their ads can relatively easily end up on such sites. According to the evidence gathered, the share of advertisements for European companies on such illegal websites has decreased by 12% since the application of this Memorandum. The signatories of the Memorandum shared their experiences and pointed to good practice in this area, especially regarding the use of advanced technology for monitoring ad placement and regarding the adjustment of contracts to reduce piracy or reduce the risk of ads on such sites. The signatories consider that this Memorandum promotes good practice and operates in a satisfactory manner and that at this time there is no need to amend the text of the Memorandum.

Read more on the aforementioned initiatives here.

 

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