Coming into Force, not Coming into Effect?
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The EU legislator responded to the challenges of the digital transformation and the increase of online communication with Directive 2019/790 on copyright and related rights in the Digital Single Market (CDSMD), which intends to establish a legal framework for the use of copyright and related rights in the online environment. Germany transposed art 17 CDSMD through a new Act on the Copyright Liability of Online Content Sharing Service Providers (OCSSP Act), which entered into force on August 1, 2021. This paper examines whether the terms and conditions and other publicly accessible copyright policies of eight services (i.e., YouTube, Rumble, TikTok, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Pinterest) changed upon the entry into force of the OCSSP Act. For this purpose, we reviewed and analyzed the relevant German-language websites of the services four times between July 2021 and November 2021. Our data collection reveals few changes in the terms and conditions of platforms over time but significant differences between the services in relation to their use of content recognition technology. The concluding section discusses the implications of these findings for the future of copyright policy in the EU.