Press release IP/10/466, issued from Brussels, Europe [that's for the benefit of our transatlantic readers who may be more familiar with the Brusselses in Illinois, Wisconsin, Manitoba or Ontario] today announces the good news that the European Commission is launching a public consultation on the future of "cultural and creative industries".
"The European Commission launches an online public consultation today aimed at unlocking the full potential of Europe's cultural and creative industries [which up till now have been ... where?]. The consultation is linked to a new Green Paper which highlights the need to improve access to finance, especially for small businesses, as key to enabling the sector to flourish and to contribute to sustainable and inclusive growth [slight panic here: the IPKat hasn't encountered 'inclusive growth' before and wonders what exactly it means].
"Europe's cultural and creative industries are not only essential for cultural diversity in our continent; they are also one of our most dynamic economic sectors. They have an important role to play in helping to bring Europe out of the crisis [They weren't the folk that got Europe into the crisis in the first place, says Merpel, so why should they be the ones to get it out again?]" said Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth [why are education and culture linked in with youth, ponder the Kats]. ...
The sector, which includes performing arts, visual arts, cultural heritage, film, television and radio, music, publishing, video games [this must be the connection between culture and youth!], new media, architecture, design, fashion design and advertising, provides quality jobs for 5 million people in the EU.
It contributes 2.6% to European GDP – which is more than many manufacturing industries achieve [and indeed, though it's difficult to believe it, it's less than some other manufacturing industries achieve]. The cultural and creative industries are also growing faster than most parts of the economy [this usually happens when people who are out of work consume more leisure activities like TV programmes ...].
Digitization and globalization are opening new market opportunities, in particular for small businesses. But these businesses very often face obstacles to fulfilling their full potential. The public consultation will encourage stakeholders and others to consider questions like:
• How can we facilitate access to funding for small and micro enterprises whose only asset is their creativity? [That's easy: (i) make more money available for loans, (ii) don't tax profit till it exists, (iii) keep interest rates low and (iv) don't mind losing it if the borrower fails]
• How can the EU help to secure the right mix of creative and managerial skills in these sectors? [by just letting it happen and not trying to regulate and bureaucratise it all the time]
• How can we foster more innovation and experimentation, including wider use of information and communication technologies? [er, that's a tricky one. If we make much more use of the information and communication technologies than we are at present, we'll all be online 26 hours a day]
Cultural and creative industries also contribute to the competitiveness and social cohesion of our cities and regions. European Capitals of Culture such as Lille, Liverpool and others show that investing in this sector creates jobs [Yes, but for how long? How convincing are the follow-up studies?] and helps transform the image of cities. While they develop firstly at local and regional levels, cultural and creative industries are potentially global in their reach, contributing to a European presence worldwide. Support in their local and regional environment can help provide them with a launch pad to achieve global success.
Cultural and creative industries can also have beneficial spill-over effects on a wide range of other businesses and society at large. Designers, for example, have gradually become an essential part of the management team of many big companies [Is this because of their skills as designers or their qualities as humans? Lawyers and accountants on management teams aren't usually there because they're actually doing the legal or finance work, are they?].
The public consultation launched by the Green Paper runs until the end of July. Details are available here in all 23 official languages of the EU [which is more than be said of the decisions of the Court of Justice, the General Court and the OHIM Boards of Appeal ...]".The IPKat, who has been recently pining for the speeches of the British Minister for Universities and Intellectual Property, David Lammy MP, thinks that whoever used to write them is now being held in creative captivity somewhere in Brussels, Belgium, where he is being deployed in that capacity in which he or she excelled -- expressing cosy, elegant and harmless sentiments in such a manner that we can do nothing but nod agreeably on hearing them, and which work really well till you actually stop to dissect them.