Interactive Software Federation of Europe

Position Papers

Europe's Video Game Industry and the Telecom Single Market

The internet is a key driver of growth in the video game industry and facilitates distribution of content, engagement with customers, multiplayer gameplay and provision of crucial software updates to improve gameplay. The industry has thrived where high-speed internet has become more accessible to consumers as the delivery of game-related services and the distribution of high-quality video game content often consumes more data than other internet-related activities. 

In this paper, the European video games industry lists a number of principles regarding Net Neutrality that should be taken into account when taking steps taken towards further harmonisation of the Telecom Single Market.

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Consumer Rights Directive: ISFE Comments on Commission Guidance

The new Directive on Consumer Rights (2011/83/EC) which replaces a number of older directives (re. distance selling and doorstep selling) and which must be transposed in national legislation by June 2014, aims to harmonise consumer law across the EU member states in order to provide consumers with better protection with regards to distance contracts and contracts negotiated away from business premises as well as certain other aspects of consumer contracts.

The European Commission will issue a Guidance document on the application of the Directive before its entry into application, in particular regarding the provision of consumer information about online digital products. The Commission extended an invitation to provide comments to this Guidance, which ISFE has done on behalf of the video games industry (see document below).

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ITU Child Online Protection Consultation on Guidelines for Industry

In the context of the International Telecommunication Union’s Child Online Protection (ITU COP) initiative, a set of Guidelines for Industry have been prepared, working towards better safety for children when using Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). The guide aims to provide advice on how industry can work to help ensure children’s safety when using such technology. After an initial consultation of the ITU COP members, the draft guidelines were open to a broader consultation in November and December 2013. PEGI S.A., the not-for-profit organisation that manages the pan-European age rating system for video games (PEGI) sent in a response on behalf of the video games industry.

The final Guidelines for Industry can be read here, and more details on the response by PEGI S.A. can be found in the document below.

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The diversity of legal offers in the video games industry

Business models in the video games industry are changing and shifting more than ever. In order to monetize their works and to minimise the impact of piracy, publishers and developers are constantly looking for ways to innovate existing business models to fit the nature of their works, thereby growing the potential consumer base, incentivising sustained user engagement, and ultimately generating healthy revenue streams. The struggle to meet consumer demands and counteract the demand for pirated copies has made the industry come a very long way in just a short period of time.

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ISFE position on the proposed Data Protection Regulation

In 2012, the Commission proposed a major reform of the EU legal framework on the protection of personal data. The new proposals are to strengthen individual rights and tackle the challenges of globalisation and new technologies. ISFE welcomes this initiative to modernise the framework and to try and establish greater harmonisation of various national frameworks. At the same time we have concerns that the wide-ranging nature and scope of the Regulation and the inflexibility and lack of definition of a number of key concepts defined therein may make implementation more difficult and enhance legal uncertainty as well as increase the cost of compliance for companies of all sizes. More details on the position of ISFE can be found in the below document.

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