EU approves tougher EU copyright rules in blow to Google, FB

Evarado Alatorre
Abril 17, 2019

Member States will have two years to adopt the Directive into their legislation.

Various other reforms are also included in the text, including a new right for newspaper publishers and new exceptions to allow text and data mining.

Internet users have protested fearing the bill would make "upload filters" mandatory on all social platforms, barring users from putting up copyrighted content (which could be anything from a meme to a song used in the background).

"With today's agreement, we are making copyright rules fit for the digital age".

"It therefore risks to hinder innovation rather than promote it and to have a negative impact the competitiveness of the European digital single market", it added. Officials said that a lot of copyrighted material is put online and that owners are not fairly remunerated.

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The new Directive will boost high-quality journalism in the EU and offer better protection for European authors and performers.

"This is quite remarkable, taking into account that these filters are commonly expected to be the core tool information society service providers will use to fulfil their new obligations under Article 17", said Rauer.

The Directive was amended to exclude memes and gifs from its purvey, as they come under provisions safeguarding "quotation, criticism, review, caricature, parody or pastiche". They point out that while large sites such as YouTube will be largely unaffected, it will threaten the existence of smaller sites.

However, there remained a degree of controversy over the reform, with particular attention directed at Articles 17 and 15.

One possible way to defeat the legislation would be to have it overturned by the European Court of Justice. "Next month's European elections are an opportunity to elect a strong cohort of open champions at the European Parliament who will work to build a more open world".

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