International conference organised by MSH Paris Nord, MSH des Alpes, MSH d'Aquitaine, MSH de Paris, MSH Nord-Pas de Calais
and Gricis Université du Québec à Montréal, within the ACI programme
« Les mutations des industries de la culture, de l’information et de la communication : bilan, cartographie, observation ».
  Panel 1 - Panel 2 - Panel 3 - Panel 4 - Panel 5 - Panel 6 - Panel 7
Panel 2 : Regulation
  Chairman :

- Marc Olivier Baruch, administrateur civil, EHESS, France

Speakers :

- Monique Dagnaud, CNRS, CEMS
«French model of “cultural exception” in the globalization process of motion picture industry»
>>> Download the communication (french)

- Guillermo Lopez Garcia, Professor of Pais Vasco, Spain
« What is at stake in Internet regulation, the Spanish case »
>>> Download the communication (French)

- Juan-Carlos Miguel de Bustos, University of Pais Vasco, Spain
« The FCC’s role in the structuring of the CMI in the United States »
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- Me Agnès Tricoire, lawyer in the Court, expert in intellectual property, France
« Royalties in the service of industry »
>>> Download the communication (french)


«French model of “cultural exception” in the globalization process of motion picture industry»

Monique Dagnaud
CNRS, CEMS, France

>>> Download the communication (french)

Why is the french model of « cultural exception » so peculiar ? This is what  will be discussed in this paper.

Geostrategies of the motion picture industry in various countries (like the United States, India, Japan, European countries, France in particular)  are quite similar when under  several aspects :
-they developp both a film industry and  a TV-programmes industry. Sometimes,  the distinction between these two kinds  of works is strict  like in France, sometimes, the bounderies are more flexible, like in England. But, beyond that specificity, countries with a tradition of film industry, naturally produce also TV-fictionnal works, documentaries and variety shows. Sometimes one is favoured to the detriment of the other, but a powerful broadcasting industry is the consequence of a powerful film industry.

-Films and TV-programmes are produced for the domestic market, this mass culture is developped with the aim of reflecting a national identity and of strengthening social ties. Domestic identity inprint these works, though they can be also under the influence of a broad range of  foreign cultures. Two rules must be mentioned : first, to achieve a good domestic market share in theaters, a country must have a substantial production of films ; secondly, the motion picture industry is sustained by the States, more or less according to each country.

-Any country with a substantial films production hopes it can export it. Why ? Because  films are powerful vectors to spread out national ideas and values, life styles, and all the goods which are associated with them. In a way, a film industry is the best showroom for a country : it can boost its trade and its tourism business.

But, the power of influence though the film industry is inequally distributed. In some countries, theaters mostly programme nothing but domestic films, in other countries, theaters provide a broad range of cultural choices. Some countries export, other countries do not export. One can observe four models :
-domestic cultural homogeneity ; high level of exports = United States
-domestic cultural homogeneity ; low level of exports = India
-domestic cultural diversity ; high level of exports = Japan
-domestic cultural diversity ; low level of exports =France

This framework for analysis helps to understand the French policy of cultural exception. So, in France, film industry and, to some extent,  TV-programmes industry, belong to artistic and cultural activities, vectors of national identity ; they are focused on the domestic market, and more on cultural than on economic goals. They are intended to boost and nourish domestic imagery and the social ties. There major aim is the protection of a national identity rather than the conquest of foreign markets.

«What is at stake in Internet regulation, the Spanish case »

Guillermo Lopez Garcia
University of Valence, Spain

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Digitalization’s extent thus as the irruption of Internet as alternative medium for the transmission of information and opinions or the commercialization of cultural products, has altered in a remarkable way as much the markets of the communication as the entertainment and culture industry. In synthesis, both are changing now from a hierarchic and unidirectional model, where the message issuer concentrates the power, to a multidirectional one, much more «equalitarian» and promoter of pluralism. Confronted to the emergence of new competitors, the economic agents traditionally settled in those markets have used a great number of legal barriers occasionally in a manifestly abusive way and, also, relying in conceptions not easy to coordinate with public principles such as the protection of the freedom of speech and pluralism promotion.

Obviously, these changes have also affected the role that has to play the State as regulator of the information flow. We will try to evaluate the performance, not only of big mass media groups but also of the spanish Administration, related to the new panorama outlined, often too guided by criteria and attitudes that we can understand only under circumstances that are no longer in place.

« The FCC’s role in the structuring of the CMI in the United States »

Juan-Carlos Miguel de Bustos
University of Pais Vasco, Spain

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Along its history, the FCC has equated the diversity of sources (ownership) with the diversity of viewpoints. This idea is based on the economic thought that the more the suppliers of a service, the more the different products and the smaller the prices in the market.

The rationale for the policy of limiting ownership is to protect the industry against domination by a few, assuming that different owners imply different formats and different viewpoints.

There were no philosophical changes in the proposal put forward by the FCC in June 2003, but it did imply structural changes, comparable to those of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. In this proposal, two new elements appear, or better, are amplified.

On the one hand, it was strongly protested, as proved by the millions of messages sent to the Congress of the US or to the FCC, and by the fact that it was brought before the Court by some representatives of the civil society. The tribunal stopped the proposal.

On the other hand, there is the increasing role that tribunals are taking in the regulation of the media in the USA. The FCC must justify the changes it proposes in an efficient way. This efficiency needs empirical evidence, which is not always available. This takes us to the issue of the definition of diversity. Diversity and pluralism, as other hyperconcepts like public service, are difficult to define and, consequently, hardly measurable.

Whatever happens, that is, what the FCC proposes and (as it will be likely protested by media groups or by the civil society) what the Court later establishes will constitute a new stage in the strategy of the FCC.

« Royalties in the service of industry »

Me Agnès Tricoire
Lawyer in the Court, expert in intellectual property, France

>>> Download the communication (french)