EU Reopens Backdoor to Graduated Response in Telecoms Package

The clock is ticking on the telecoms package and not even a week before the final vote, reports are surfacing that the provisions that would prevent an EU-wide three strikes law has been neutralized.

Note: This is an article I wrote that was published elsewhere first. It has been republished here for archival purposes

It’s been a back and forth battle preventing a European-wide three strikes law. Under pressure from France and the copyright industry, there’s been a number of attempts to sneak a so-called ‘graduated response’ into Europe’s telecoms package. Previously last month, that attempt failed with an amendment that said that European’s cannot be disconnected from the internet. It seemed like a victory for many, but a recent report suggests that the battle momentum just took a swing into the other direction.

The report comes from Squaring the Net which says that the anti-net discrimination recitals in the telecoms package was reduced down to little more than a blurb.

Citizens from all the EU must phone their MEPs to explain to them how crucial these stakes are for the future of our societies and our economies. MEPs have a chance to correct their colleagues’ mistakes by voting for the “Citizen Rights amendments” package, which includes the original amendments 138, 130 (ITRE), and 166 (IMCO) from first reading, along with clear protections against “net discrimination”, and removal of all remaining traces of “graduated response”.

Squaring the Net also urged European citizens to contact their Member of European Parliament and urge them to prevent a graduated response to a possible Europe-wide “three strikes” law.

Another thing to consider is the fact that the European elections are just around the corner. Already, the Pirate Party is currently set to win a seat in parliament thanks to an extra boost in support some say is the result of an overly aggressive copyright industry trying to shape laws that supports an ageing business model. With this latest new threat to European citizens, one might suspect that the support will grow. If the current members don’t support the rights of European citizens, maybe voting in someone else like those in the Pirate Party will take their place to pick up where previous members left off.

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Google+.

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