Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada has spoken of the importance of protecting the work of artists and their incomes.
The Ireland South MEP, who sits on the EU Culture and Education Committee, made the comments on World Book and Copyright Day.
“The 23rd of April is recognised by UNESCO as World Book and Copyright Day. This is a day when we should celebrate authors and other artists that do so much to contribute to our society,” she said.
“With new technologies there are now more ways to access pieces of literature and music so that the general public may enjoy them. This is of course a good thing, but it could also leave artists vulnerable to exploitation.
“The music industry, for instance, has changed enormously over the last decade and legislators are still playing catch up.
“User Uploaded Content (UCC) services such as Youtube are now the main source of music consumption; 82% of YouTube’s European users use the service to access music and UUC platforms have over 1 billion music users globally.
“This is great for getting your music and your name out there, but its not that great if you wish to be compensated for your work.
“As we celebrate World Book and Copyright Day, we must be mindful of ensuring we foster an environment in which the artists of today and tomorrow can flourish.
“The wealth of homegrown talent we have in Ireland is enormous and it is important that we not only support and nurture that industry but also share it with the world.”