Accessing online content when you’re abroad


New rules allowing European Union citizens with subscriptions for online music, games, movies and TV shows to access that content while staying temporarily in another EU country were informally agreed by the European Parliament and European Council negotiators on Tuesday.

Currently consumers visiting another EU country often cannot access and use online content services, such as music, games, movies, entertainment programs or sporting events, that they have subscribed to in their home country, because their cross-border portability is restricted by territorial and exclusive licensing practices.

The new rules will remove these restrictions for all new subscriptions and also for those purchased before the rules enter into force, thus enabling EU citizens to access this online content while temporarily abroad in another EU country on holiday, for studies or on business.

However, they will apply only to online fee-based services.

Free-of-charge services will not be subject to the rules, but their providers will have the option of making them portable EU-wide.