"European Copyright Leak Exposes Plans to Force the Internet to Subsidize Publishers"

The EFF has released "European Copyright Leak Exposes Plans to Force the Internet to Subsidize Publishers" by Jeremy Malcolm.

Here's an excerpt:

A just-leaked draft impact assessment on the modernization of European copyright rules could spell the end for many online services in Europe as we know them. The document's recommendations foreshadow new a EU Directive on copyright to be introduced later this year, that will ultimately bind each of the European Union's 28 member states. If these recommendations by the European Commission are put in place, Europe's Internet will never be the same, and these impacts are likely to reverberate around the world. . . .

The Commission's proposal is to award publishers a new copyright-like veto power, layered on top of the copyright that already exists in the published content, allowing them to prevent the online reuse of news content even when a copyright exception applies. This veto power may last for as little as one year, or as many as 50—the Commission leaves this open for now.

This kind of veto power has been described as a link tax—notwithstanding the Commission's protestations that it isn't one-because when the publisher controls even the use of small snippets of news text surrounding a hyperlink to the original article, it essentially amounts to a tax on that link. The result, as seen in Spain, will be the closure of online news portals, and a reduction in traffic to news publishers.

Digital Curation and Digital Preservation Works | Open Access Works | Digital Scholarship | Digital Scholarship Sitemap

Author: Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

Charles W. Bailey, Jr.