EU backs digital future

Reding also confirms anti-piracy initiatives

The European Union will plough public coin into the launch of European online distribution services and the digitization of films.

Money will be channeled through the EU’s new media program, which runs 2007-2013, EU Commissioner Viviane Reding announced in Cannes Tuesday after a powwow of 20 EU culture ministers.

The meeting formed the morning centerpiece of the fest’s Europe Day.

Reding also confirmed initiatives in the EU anti-piracy strategy. One is education: “It’s the best way to solve piracy, changing the mentality of Europe’s young generation, explaining that by destroying film’s value, you’re destroying film,” Reding declared.

EU culture and education ministers will initiate an informal meeting to advance a campaign.

Culture ministers also agreed to exchange ideas on the best anti-piracy practices. One idea welcomed by Reding, which has been introduced in several EU countries, is a “graduated” response where copyright offenders are first warned and then prosecuted if they persist.

The $13,000 EU new talent prize was awarded Monday to Swedish screenwriter Peter Borjesson.

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