Creative Commons Joins in to Condemn EU Copyright Proposal

Creative Commons is joining in the growing chorus of people who oppose article 11 and article 13.

Article 11 and Article 13 is expected to be voted on this Wednesday. While it is supposed to be a new re-worked copyright proposal, very small exceptions were carved out for specific websites. This leaves the hugely controversial upload filter and link taxes in place. As a result, very little has changed in the law between when it was first rejected back in July and now.

With the next critical vote expected to take place just around the corner, people and organizations are standing up to once again condemn the proposed laws. Last week, we reported on news that organizations like YouTube and Wikipedia are already condemning the copyright law proposal in Europe as a threat to the Internet.

Now Creative Commons is joining in the global resistance against these laws. BoingBoing is pointing to an urgent message from Creative Commons which blasts the proposal as harmful. From their announcement:

MEPs should vote against Article 13 upload filters, which would scan all content uploaded to online platforms for any copyrighted works and prevent those works from going online if a match is discovered. It will limit freedom of expression, as the required upload filters won’t be able to tell the difference between copyright infringement and permitted uses of copyrighted works under limitations and exceptions. It puts into jeopardy the sharing of video remixes, memes, parody, and code, even works that incorporate openly licensed content.

MEPs should vote against Article 11, the unnecessary and counterproductive press publishers right that would require anyone using snippets of journalistic content to first get a license or pay a fee to the publisher for its use online.

Much of the copyright directive has been narrowly tailored to serve the interests of the most powerful rights holders from the entertainment and publishing sectors. These powerful actors wish to prevent any deviation from their bottom line profits by the revolutionary changes brought about by digital technologies and the internet.

These voices do not represent the incredible diversity of creativity online. On the internet, everyone is a creator, and we want to share knowledge, artistic and political expression, photos and home movies, news, and even code with others in the global commons, on platforms from Wikipedia to YouTube to open access journals to online learning websites. We need progressive policies that support this type of sharing and access if we want to achieve our vision of universal access to research and education and full participation in culture to drive a new era of development, growth, and productivity.

Now is the time for Europe to secure progressive rules on copyright that will truly protect all creators and users, not just special interests. MEPs need to listen to the countless voices that represent the future of creativity, innovation, and online sharing.

At this stage, it is unclear whether the voices of the people and supporters of an open Internet will be heard by lawmakers sufficiently to reject the laws at this point in time. Still, it is worth pointing out that they have succeeded in convincing lawmakers to save the Internet in the previous vote. For those that value the Internet, the hope is that we can have a repeat of what happened last time and see these laws rejected.
Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Google+.

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