Today a draft version of the Commission proposal for a new directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market was leaked. Member of the European Parliament Marietje Schaake (ALDE/D66): 'This draft lacks ambition and instead reads like a defence of old business models. We need a real copyright revolution instead, in order to update it for the digital era, and to help complete the digital single market. I really hope that this is not the final version of the proposed Directive.'
The current draft would create a list of mandatory exceptions or limitations, but freedom of panorama is currently not being addressed. It does introduce a new ‘neighbouring right’ for news publications, which would prevent the sharing of links and snippets to news articles. Schaake: 'The European Parliament has consistently warned against introducing such a broad and ill-defined right. Examples from Spain and Germany demonstrate that such a measure would not have a positive impact in the number and quality of news publications - to the contrary. While I am concerned about journalism, more copyright enforcement will not help publishers, and instead hurts internet users. If implemented, the draft would effectively end the internet as we know it.'
More privatised enforcement
Article 13 of the draft would require a large amount of intermediaries to implement expensive technical control systems like YouTube's ContentID to prevent copyright infringements. Schaake: 'The current draft basically forces any intermediary to act like YouTube, while not every intermediary has the same amount of money, power and tools like Google. The costs of creating such a system would impede SMEs from creating new user generated platforms that could compete with the existing giants that exist today.'