April 1st, 2018 is a very important date for video service operators with customers in the European Union. On that date, every EU citizen gets a new content viewing rights that affect every pay streaming service they use.
The travel content portability measure
The new free white paper from nScreenMedia, Global Media: Dealing with EU travel portability and the single digital market, discusses the EU Digital Single Market (DSM) and how the new portability measure affects video services. The DSM is a decades-long effort by the European Union to unify the rules governing digital access across all 28-member countries.
To date, the only measure fully implemented has been the removal of mobile data roaming charges for EU citizens traveling within Europe. That changes on April 1st, 2018 when new content portability measures come into force.
Today, when Netflix members from the UK are traveling in Spain, they can only access the Spanish Netflix catalog of content. After April 1st, they will be able to see the complete library of content available to them in the UK. The travel portability measure allows an EU citizen to access the same set of content available to them at home while traveling anywhere within the EU.
Who is affected by the new travel portability measure?
The travel portability measure affects the following types of video businesses:
- All digital providers who offer paid online content services
- Optionally, digital providers who offer free online content services
- Digital content rights holders
If you have customers or partners in the EU, your content business will be affected by the travel content portability measure.
The nScreenMedia white paper details six steps a video service provider must implement to be ready for April 1stdeadline. However, there are four broad steps that video business needs to pay attention to:
- Validate a user’s “member state of residence” when he or she signs up and renews service;
- Allow an EU citizen to access their home content library from anywhere within the EU;
- Ensure that only users that are temporarily present in a member state access their home content;
- Protect existing content license rights not covered by the travel portability measure.
The measure requires video service providers to alter how they use geolocation and blocking technology. It does not remove the need for either.
Impact on content rights holders
Digital content rights holders need do nothing special to support the travel portability measures. The regulations treat any subscriber accessing a service within the EU but outside their home market as if they were at home. In other words, even if a content license prevents access outside a single country, EU law overrides the provision for traveling EU citizens.
The white paper, which is sponsored by Geoguard, looks at how the content portability measure impacts service providers, wireless and wireline broadband providers, content rights holders, and big and small online video service providers. If you have video customers in Europe, or license content to EU providers, you should download this white paper today.
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Why it matters
The new EU travel content portability measure affects video service providers and content rights owners with customers in the EU.
The measure allows EU citizens to access their home content anywhere within the EU.
Service providers must alter sign-up and geo-blocking procedures to comply with the rules.
Content license holder rights are affected by the measure.