The copyright laws are complex. Like the meaning of this stock image
A GAGGLE OF NERDS have signed an open letter to the EU warning of the potential effect of a proposed ‘copyright filter’ that would force search engines to filter copyright content.
Internet illuminati including Jimmy Wales (Wikipedia), Mitchell Baker (Mozilla) Brewster Kahle (Internet Archive) and Tim Berners-Lee (the whole freakin’ WW flippin’ W) have criticised the move which is subject to a crunch vote on the 20th or 21st of June.
The anti-Article 13 letter, one of several over the past few months, has been signed by 70 of the internet’s best and brightest who believe that “Article 13 takes an unprecedented step towards the transformation of the Internet, from an open platform for sharing and innovation, into a tool for the automated surveillance and control of its users.”
Now, we at INQ are only too familiar with the issue of our copy being ripped off for some smaller site that specialises in ripping off the big guns. You might be reading this on one of them now – it’s usually done by a scraping bot. Oooh – that’d be meta.
However, the idea that anything copyright would be filtered would be horrific. For a start – that meme you started could get you in the same trouble as ripping hundreds of DVDs. That can’t be right, surely?
It’s the perfect illustration of how draconian the measures are – if the “take my money” meme using Fry from Futurama was totally fine with creator Matt Groening, and we have no reason to suspect he isn’t, then it could still be removed because it isn’t in the spirit of the law – effectively removing Groening’s right to tolerate the infraction of his own property.
Yes. It’s bonkers.
In the event that the continuing efforts to soften or abandon the plans fail, its thought that many sites will move outside the EU to comply.
The letter goes on to say: “We support the consideration of measures that would improve the ability for creators to receive fair remuneration for the use of their works online. But we cannot support Article 13, which would mandate Internet platforms to embed an automated infrastructure for monitoring and censorship deep into their networks. For the sake of the Internet’s future, we urge you to vote for the deletion of this proposal.”
If you are interested in taking action, you can follow this link to the Electronic Frontier Foundation. µ