And you thought GDPR was bad …
The European Digital Single Market directive on copyright
This is not law yet, but extremely worrying and we may need to take action before the key EU Parliamentary debate goes ahead.
As I understand it, there are two basic areas that are of most concern. If this becomes Law:
- All online platforms operating in the EU would be obliged to monitor and prevent any copyright work from being uploaded to their site (consider for a moment the technical & administrative challenge to achieve that, and also how you might define a copyright work and how that might apply to snippets, mash-ups or memes …)
- All links to copyright content would be subject to a “link tax” (yes you read that correctly!) - a mandatory fee paid to the originator for which the originator may not be able to opt out of (e.g. so Alphabet won’t be able to opt out for links to YouTube videos, or any news site opt out for non-profits). This is intended to support genuine news journalism, but of course it depends how generally the law is worded.
I can barely believe the second proposal is real … but it is! I understand you won’t even be able to show a ‘one-box’ preview of something without being liable to pay a fee!!
You can just imagine how this might impact independent Discourse forums that are run on a shoestring!!
Sites such as Github are very concerned about how this may impact them. Can you imagine the potential damage to the open-source community?
I don’t claim to be an expert, but please start informing yourself about this and if you are within the EU, consider contacting your MEP to voice your opinion ahead of the debate on June 20th: