EU Parliament Committee Accepts Resonant Proposals against Internet Piracy

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06.07.2018

EU Parliament Committee Accepts Resonant Proposals against Internet Piracy

The EU is developing an action plan aimed at combating Internet piracy and creating innovations for European copyright law. JURI, which is the Legal Affairs Committee of the Parliament, recently considered and accepted a couple of suggestions, including “upload filters”, which caused a lot of controversies. Julia Reda, Pirate Party MEP, expressed her disappointment with these actions and also said that this is not the end of the confrontation.

The European Commission is trying to maximally affect the improvement of European copyright law along with the adoption of important proposals. The drawn up plan of action contains many ambiguous moments. For example, Article 13 of the Copyright Directive states that online services that monitor and filter downloaded content will be directly affected, which has caused public criticism.

EU Parliament Committee Accepts Resonant Proposals against Internet PiracyThe article affirms that the responsibility for downloading content is fully covered by online services until they accept the necessary corrective measures that will prevent any copyright infringement if the owners of this content insist. This also includes preventing the secondary loading of documents with certain non-observance of the rules. Such actions require hash filtering and constant monitoring of all user actions.

Concerning this issue, the Legal Affairs Committee of the Parliament (YURI) held a vote. Rapporteur Voss’s recommendation regarding article 13 was supported by the majority of the votes from 15 to 10. Thus, despite public indifference and mass outrage, the action plan is gradually coming into effect.

During the previous year, headlines about active opposition opinions often appeared. Politicians, digital activists, and lawyers were worried that the innovations would shift the scope of the rights of ordinary Internet surfers. For several weeks of discontent, the rifts have constantly reached their peak. Even Vint Cerf (the pioneer of the Internet), Tim Berners-Lee (the inventor of World Wide Web), Brewster Kahle (Archive of the Internet), and Jimmy Wales from Wikipedia expressed their indignation.

This opposition movement was supported by the public. A petition was created, which insisted on the refusal of innovations from the legislative bodies. About 32 thousand users signed it. Over the last week on the Internet, there were more than 50 thousand tweets with the hashtag #SaveYourInternet. Apart from Article 13, Article 11, dealing with the introduction of a communication tax, was treated in a special context. This initiative also won a majority of votes from 13 to 12.

Since this proposal was approved, the Committee will hold a planetary meeting. After that, it will be able to carry out the conclusive vote on the reforms of the copyright system, which is scheduled for the spring of 2019. Now it will be very difficult to radically affect something since the mechanism is already running. A similar situation has developed with ACTA, but in this case, it will be much more difficult to come to such a driving force. Julia Reda, Pirate Party MEP, repeatedly nominated a number of alternative solutions to controversial innovations that were rejected, lost faith in the legislature, but did not give up. Ms. Reda considers such proposals inadmissible and emphasizes that these actions counteract the use of the Internet. She also says that such measures will create discomfort in the daily activity of users, including expressing one’s opinion and discussing certain events. Rada claims that blocking the freedom of users is unacceptable and unjustified.

She declares that she is continuing to actively protest against this decision and calls on the public to take part in the voting, which will be held next month in the European Parliament. Julia Reda is sure that it is not too late to refute and overturn this outcome of the events and to achieve the preservation of free Internet.


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