"Implementation of the old copyright industries' wishlist, with little that addresses online users' needs"

Am 14. September 2016 - 20:17 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.

One of the reasons the EU Commission wants this ancillary copyright is that the press publishers will be "better able to fight piracy." This is has always been one of the key arguments by the rightsholders. But being a journalist and writer for many years, Moody points out that there is no such need as "they are already able do that, since journalists generally assign the copyright to them." 

Further, Moody envisions a future with this new publishers' right where "far fewer snippets will appear online because of a fear of being sued under new laws whose exact contours have not been established." The logical consequence is that "publishers are likely to suffer, since fewer snippes means less traffic to their sites." We can only agree with his prediction. In the end, the little publishers will have a hard time trying to keep relevant while the big players will have strengthened their market power.

With reference to the similar laws in Germany and Spain, Moody wonders "why the European Commission thinks that an EU-wide snippet tax will work when it has failed spectacularly not once, but twice." The Commission's maxim in this regard seems to be "The more the merrier!" They obviously have forgotten that this does not always prove to be true.

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