On 15 January 2004 the European Parliament accepted an own-initiative report about the importance and future of collecting societies, the organisations that collect the rights on copyright and neighbouring rights. The report states that Digital Rights Management is insufficiently developed to replace the work of collecting societies. According to the report, reasonable levies (for example on blank CD-recordables) are "the only means of ensuring equitable remuneration for creators and easy access by users to intellectual property works and cannot be replaced by Digital Rights Management Systems."
In 2002 the European Commission promised to produce a Communication about the collecting societies, to fill in some details left open by the new Copyright Directive (2001/29/EC). The communication never materialised, and the Austrian Member of Parliament Mercedes Echerer took the initiative herself.