Kategorie directive

New open letter representing a broad spectrum of stakeholders   Am 4. Dezember 2017 - 13:37 Uhr von Tom Hirche

Together with over 80 other organizations, we have co-signed an open letter to the Ministers attending the Competitiveness Council and the EU institutions last week to once again warn them of causing severe damage.

The signees represent human and digital rights activists, media freedom promoters, publishers, journalists, libraries, scientific and research institutions, educational institutions including universities, creator representatives, consumers, software developers, start-ups, technology businesses and Internet service providers.

We know that this is not the first open letter related to the proposed copyright directive and that all arguments have already been shared. For this reason, this new open letter has been limited to a single and strong sentence:

"We write to you to share our respectful but serious concerns that discussions in the Council and European Commission on the Copyright Directive are on the verge of causing irreparable damage to our fundamental rights and freedoms, our economy and competitiveness, our education and research, our innovation and competition, our creativity and our culture."

 The letter than refers to 29 (!) previous letters and analyzes sent by stakeholders and experts warning against the negative impacts of certain proposals (like the link tax in Article 11) and explaining why in more detail.

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LIBE Committee remains silent on link tax   Am 21. November 2017 - 0:00 Uhr von Tom Hirche

Today, the European Parliament's Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) has finally voted on its opinion on the Commission's proposal for a new copyright directive. While problematic provisions for mandatory content filtering have been tackled, the Committee did not take any stand when it came to the ancillary copyright for press publishers aka the link tax.

However, this is not necessarily a bad thing given that some hardliners tried to hijack the Committee by suddenly tabling amendments that were strongly in favour of the link tax. The LIBE Committee is responsible for citizen's human rights and particularly deals with data protection. Therefore, it had been agreed on in the past to solely focus on topics that fall into the Committee's sphere––which the link tax obviously does not. But MEPs like Axel Voss (EPP, Germany), Gérard Deprez (ALDE, Belgium) or Louis Michel (ALDE, Belgium) simply ignored this agreement and prepared a total of 12 amendments that would turn the already terrible proposal for a link tax into an even darker nightmare from an internet user's perspective.

Fortunately, some MEPs had come to reason before the vote started and withdrew their rogue amendments. In the case of the MEPs who did not follow this lead, their amendments have either not been voted on or were rejected by the majority. So in the end, the compromise amendments as prepared by rapporteur MEP Michał Boni plus two additional amendments all dealing with content filtering were adopted 36:5 (3 abstentions).

We are pleased to see that the Committee has focused on what its competencies are, although it "should have stepped up to truly protect free expression and deleted the flawed Article entirely", as OpenMedia’s Digital Rights Specialist Ruth Coustick-Deal said in reaction to today's vote.

Estonia's proposal is good and bad at the same time   Am 31. August 2017 - 18:01 Uhr von Tom Hirche

Summer break is over. Statewatch has leaked a compromise proposal from the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European Union to the EU Commission's initial proposal for a directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market. When it comes to Article 11 containing the ancillary copyright for press publishers, the Presidency does not come up with only one but with two completely different proposals. Weiter

IMCO supports link tax – several MEPs did not attend the vote   Am 8. Juni 2017 - 20:06 Uhr von Tom Hirche

This morning, the European Parliament's Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) voted on the Copyright in the Digital Single Market directive (2016/0280(COD)) as the first of five committees. The outcome is of great significance to the other votes that are yet to come. Unfortunately, the ancillary copyright for press publishers is still very much alive. Weiter

CEIPI's opinion on a European ancillary copyright for press publishers   Am 13. Dezember 2016 - 9:42 Uhr von Tom Hirche

On November 28, the Centre for International Intellectual Property Studies (CEIPI) at the University of Strasbourg has published its opinion on the European Commission's copyright reform proposal which was introduced on September 14, 2016. The opinion was written by Professor Christophe Geiger, Oleksandr Bulayenko and Giancarlo Frosio who solely focused on the proposed introduction of neighbouring rights for press publishers in EU law. In their view, the negative effects of the proposal prevail. Weiter

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More and more champagne for the rightsholders!   Am 14. September 2016 - 20:40 Uhr von Tom Hirche

"Implementation of the old copyright industries' wishlist, with little that addresses online users' needs"   Am 14. September 2016 - 19:17 Uhr von Tom Hirche

Today, the EU Commission has published its plans on introducing an ancillary copyright for basically any press publisher lasting a little over 20 years. Glyn Moody wrote an article published by ArsTechnika UK criticizing the draft. Weiter