The End of Geoblocking

The European Union will reportedly end its country-specific limits or "geoblocking," whereby consumers in one EU country cannot buy a good or service sold online in another, for online retailers. 

The E.U. has reached agreement whereby consumers can buy products and services from any online business in any E.U. country, prohibiting so-called "geoblocking" where the sites stop consumers from buying across borders.

Copyright-protected content, such as as music streaming, e-books, or TV and movies are not included in this agreement. The agreement applies to ecommerce sites including Amazon and eBay.

Companies will no longer be able to re-direct consumers to a country-specific website without their consent. However, consumers will still have to organize how to pick up a product if the company does not offer cross-border delivery.

Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip said the proposal would put an end to unjustified discrimination for online shoppers.

"With the new rules, Europeans will be able to choose which website they want to buy from, without being blocked or re-routed. This will be a reality by Christmas next year," Ansip said in a statement.

If you sell products and services online in the E.U. you'll be affected by this when it finally comes into force in 2018.