The mechanism of alternative forms of disputes resolution (widely known as ‘ADR’) consists of the appropriate method both at national, EU and international level for the prompt and effective handling of disputes that arise in general, including also those related copyright and related – rights law.

These procedures consist of an alternative form to court litigation which is often cost and time effective.

The HCO may provide, according to the law, mediation services in accordance with the Law 4640/2019 in the field of copyright, related rights and collective management (Art. 69 par. 1 of the Law 2121/1993). This possibility had not been yet activated. Nevertheless, the HCO may provide mediation services informally in specific cases which fall within the scope of its competence upon agreement of all the parties involved in order to facilitate an amicable resolution of the dispute.

Reference is often made in the relevant legal framework to other terms, such as that of 'intercession', which is not the judicial mediation (214B of the Civil Code) nor intermediation according to the Law 4640/2019; instead, the mediation provided by the HCO consists of a sui generis competence of a special nature.

  • Article 34Α Law. 2121/1993: Law 2121/1993: “Negotiations mechanism concerning access and availability of audiovisual works on video – on – demand platforms.”

    When the parties are facing difficulties in relation to the provision of authorization (conclusion of contracts or licensing agreements) for the purpose of making audiovisual works available on video-on-demand platforms, they may, if they wish, request the assistance of the HCO or the assistance of mediators, and as to the remainder Article 35 par. 9 of the Law 2121/1993 shall apply accordingly.

    The H.C.O. and the mediators provide assistance to the parties during their negotiations and help them reach an agreement, including, where appropriate, by submitting proposals to them.

  • Article 35 par. 9 Law 2121/1993: Non conclusion of an agreement between the collective management organization and the operator of retransmission services or between the operator of retransmission services and the broadcasting organisation regarding authorization for the retransmission of a broadcasting

    Any of the interested parties may request the assistance of one or more mediators selected from a table of independent and impartial mediators, drawn up by the HCO every two years. Mediators provide their assistance during negotiations and submit proposals to the parties. It is considered that all parties are accepting the said proposal in the case where none of them raises objections within a period of three months from the notification of the proposal.

  • Article 39Α Law 2121/1993: Alternative disputes resolution procedures

    Disputes concerning the transparency obligation under Article 15A and the claim for additional remuneration under Article 32A may be submitted to an alternative dispute resolution procedure, insofar as the parties agree, and par. 9 of Article 35 shall apply accordingly. Authors’ representative organisations may initiate such procedures following a specific request of one or more authors. Any contractual provision excluding recourse to mediation is void. Invalidity may only be invoked by the author.

  • Technological measures - Non taking voluntary measures (Article 66A par. 5 Law 2121/1993)

    According to par. 5 of Article 66Α of the Law 2121/1993, if rightholders do not take voluntary measures, including agreements between rightholders and third – parties who are benefiting from exceptions and limitations as respectively provided for in the law, both rightholders and such third parties request the assistance of one or more mediators selected by the table of mediators, which is drawn up by the HCO.

    Mediators submit proposals to the interested parties. It is considered that all parties are accepting this proposal when none of them raises objections within a time – period of one month from the notification of the proposal. In the opposite case, the dispute is resolved by the Single Member Court of Appeal of Athens, which judges in first and last instance.

    This provision shall not apply to works or other subject - matters of protection which are made available to the public on the basis of terms which had been contractually agreed in a way that the public may have access to them at the place and time individually chosen by them.

  • Disputes between rightholders and users in relation to the disability of access to or to the removal of works or subject - matters of protection uploaded by the latter (Article 66F par. 10 Law 2121/1993)

    In accordance with par. 10 of a href="https://opi.gr/en/library21/law-2121-1993#a66f">Article 66F of the Law 2121/1993, when a dispute arises in relation to the disability of access to or to the removal of works or subject – matters of protection which had been uploaded by users, apart from the complaint and redress procedure and the respective, it may be resolved with the assistance of one or more intermediators, and to the remainder par. 9 of par. 9 of Article 35 Law 2121/1993 shall accordingly apply.

    In relation to this issue see as follows: WIPO Expert Determination for User Uploaded Content (WIPO EDUUC)

General

In accordance with Article 44 of the Law 4481/2017disputes between collective management organisations, collective protection organisations and members of collective management organisations, rightholders or users , regarding the provisions of this Law and of the Law 2121/1993, may, if so desired by all parties involved, be submitted to mediation, in accordance with the provisions of Law 4640/2019 (A’ 190) (it is stated that the Law 3898/2010 had been abolished by Art. 33 par. 1 of the Law 4640/2019).

In addition, disputes relating to a collective management organization that grants or offers to grant multi-territorial licenses for online rights to musical works may be subject to mediation and, in particular: a) disputes with an existing or potential online service provider regarding the application of Articles 22, 34, 35 and 36, b) disputes with one or more rightholders regarding the application of articles 34 to 40, and c) disputes with another collective management organization regarding the application of Αrticles 34 to 39 of the Law 4481/2017.

The mediation procedure shall be without prejudice to the right of the parties to proceed to court litigation. Parties may submit the dispute at issue to mediation either before or during the pendency of proceedings. . In the event that the dispute is submitted to mediation, the filing of a lawsuit prior to the completion of the mediation procedure, is excluded. If it is submitted during the pendency of proceedings, the court at each stage, if the parties agree, postpones the trial of the case to a short hearing and in any case not beyond six months.

Amount of the remuneration due

This case is the only is the only one for which the possibility of subjecting it to arbitration is provided for in the law.

In particular, par. 4 of Article 23 of the Law 4481/2017 provides that disputes between collective management organisations and users concerning the amount of the remuneration that the user must pay may be submitted to arbitration by agreement.

The arbitrators are appointed from a table drawn up by the HCO every two (2) years, the preparation of which takes mandatorily into account the opinions of both parties.

As to the rest, Articles 867 et seq. of the Civil Procedure Code shall apply.

In addition, par. 5 of Article 23 of the Law 4481/2017, provides that collective management organizations and representative associations of users may agree in writing and before a dispute arises, on the appointment of a person as arbitrator in order to determine the remuneration to be paid by the user.

The arbitrator is appointed also in this case from the table drawn up by the HCO every two (2) years, the preparation of which takes mandatorily into account the opinions of both parties.

Τhe arbitrator can order the advanced payment of the amount until the final amount of the remuneration due is determined.

The arbitratorthus appointed is the sole person competent for the resolution of the dispute and his decision is enforceable.

An arbitrator can be also appointed by the Minister of Culture and Sports and resorting to that arbitrator for the resolution of the dispute shall depend on the will of the parties.

The HCO and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) are in close co-operation within the framework of alternative forms of disputes resolution following the signing of a relevant Memorandum of Cooperation between them.

Within this context, the staff and officers of the HCO are trained, and joint actions are carried out to promote alternative forms of disputes resolution in copyright and related – rights issues, such as the organization of conferences and seminars for the training of interested parties.

  • European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) – Mediation Centre for Alternative Dispute Resolution

  • WIPO Mediation and Arbitration Workshop 2023

  • Online event HCO - WIPO “Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Mechanisms for Copyright and Content-Related Disputes”

  • The HCO becomes a member of the Mediation Pledge for IP and Technology Disputes of the WIPO Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR Center).

    The Mediation Pledge for IP and Technology Disputes is an initiative of the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center. The Pledge seeks to encourage the use of mediation in the resolution of IP and technology disputes.

    The signatories to the Pledge recognize that, in relation to litigation, mediation can offer a cooperative, time and cost-effective way of resolving commercial disputes relating to the above matters.

    Learn more about Mediation Pledge for IP and Technology Disputes here.

  • Webinar on June 8, 2023, under the title “Mechanisms of alternative resolution of disputes (ARD) in respect of disputes concerning copyright’ which is organized by the HCO and the WIPO ADR Center..

    The HCO and the WIPO ADR Center are jointly organizing on June 8, 2023, a webinar devoted to ADR on copyright and related – rights disputes within the framework of the Memorandum of Co-Operation that was signed on 14.12.2022.

    The registration link for the webinar via the Zoom platform is available here. The programme of the webinar is available here.

  • Participation of the WIPO ADR Center to the HCO’s scientific event devoted to the “Recent Legislative Amendments to Copyright Law: Law 4996/2022 and 4961/2022” that took place on February 14 and 15, 2023. .

    The WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center of WIPO participated in the scientific conference under the title ““Recent Legislative Amendments to Copyright Law: Law 4996/2022 and 4961/2022” that was organized by the HCO in collaboration with the Law School of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens on February 14 and 15, 2023, where Ms Alexia Gkoritsa, Legal Case Manager in Business Development Unit, IP Disputes and External Relations Division of the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center spoke about: «The contribution of WIPO to the alternative resolution of copyright disputes and of the uploaded to the Internet content».

  1. WIPO’s orientation sessions on ADR for copyright disputes in Greece
  2. Within the framework of collaboration between the HCO and the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center, you may book a one-on-one virtual orientation session with WIPO staff to help you consider mediation to resolve your dispute.

    WIPO had created a special a calendar and booking page to offer virtual procedural assistance on WIPO ADR to Greek copyright stakeholders.

    No fees are paid for using the service and it can be provided in both Greek and English.

    You may see more here.

  3. o WIPO Expert Determination for User Uploaded Content (WIPO EDUUC)
  4. Under the aim of facilitating the resolution of disputes in the digital environment, within the framework of the Digital Services Act (Digital Services Act) and of the Directive (EU) 2019/790, the WIPO Center has established an international procedure for the resolution of disputes concerning content uploaded by users to platforms.

    This procedure WIPO Expert Determination for User Uploaded Content (WIPO EDUUC), is held under the WIPO EDUUC rules and constitutes part of the WIPO ADR for Digital Copyright and Content Disputes services.

    Within the framework of this procedure, the Parties (Users and Rightholders) may allege the application or not of exceptions or limitation to copyright (quotation, criticism, review, use for caricature, parody or pastiche) during the uploading to and making available of content via the platform.