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Thread: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

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    Default EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    https://www.theguardian.com/technolo...ol-for-control
    A European parliament committee has voted for legislation that internet pioneers fear will turn the web into “a tool for surveillance and control”.In a key vote on a draft law to overhaul EU copyright rules, the parliament’s legal affairs committee on Wednesday voted for measures that would require the likes of Google and Microsoft to install filters to prevent users from uploading copyrighted materials.

    First proposed by the European commission in 2016, the law attempts to update EU copyright laws for the age of Facebook and Google, with the aim of ensuring that authors, artists and journalists are “paid fairly” for their work.

    Critics fear the measures would stifle freedom of expression by curtailing internet users’ ability to share content. Some lawmakers say even memes would be affected, as users would be required to take their own meme photos and give permission for others to use them.


    So a tax for posting links, banning memes, and authoritarian copyright laws is just what we voted for, right?

    Oh yeah, we have no say on what the EU imposes on us.

    One of the most controversial provisions, article 13, would require platforms, such as Google and Microsoft, to install filters. It was adopted by the committee by 15 votes to 10.


    And the article 11 proposal

    https://www.independent.co.uk/life-s...-a8407566.html
    Article 11 introduces a "link tax", requiring that internet companies get permission from publishers to use a snippet of their work. On websites like Google and Twitter, for instance, a small part of the article is usually shown before someone clicks into it entirely – but, under the new rule, those technology companies would have get permission and perhaps even pay to use that excerpt.


    What it would boil down to is an AI system that would automatically go trawl the internet and red flag anything at all that might be a copyright strike.

    The guy who invented the internet, among others, have signed a letter appealing to the inquisition commission to drop the measure.

    Earlier in June, an open letter signed by 70 of the biggest names of the internet, including the creator of the world wide web, Tim Berners-Lee, and the Wikipedia founder, Jimmy Wales, argued that article 13 would take “an unprecedented step towards the transformation of the internet from an open platform for sharing and innovation, into a tool for the automated surveill


    Internet experts are also worried about another provision adopted on Wednesday that would force internet platforms, such as Google, to pay publishers for showing snippets of news stories. Reda argues that the “link tax” would drastically curtail internet users from sharing news stories and even holiday photos on the internet. Under the proposals, “such snippets would require licensing, including even short and purely factual headlines like ‘Angela Merkel meets Theresa May’”, she wrote ahead of the vote.


    The letter reads

    https://www.independent.co.uk/life-s...-a8407566.html
    "By requiring Internet platforms to perform automatic filtering all of the content that their users upload, Article 13 takes an unprecedented step towards the transformation of the Internet, from an open platform for sharing and innovation, into a tool for the automated surveillance and control of its users," that letter read.


    These automatic filters would be completely blind to fair comment, satire, criticism and parody. They need to be stopped. It’s essentially the Youtube content ID (and we onow how that ended) but for the ENTIRE INTERNET.

    https://www.theverge.com/2018/6/19/1...-upload-filter
    Remember the time YouTube Content ID took down a video with birds chirping in the background because an avant-garde song in its copyright database also had birds chirping in the background? Remember the time NASA’s videos of a Mars landing got taken down by a news agency? Remember the time a live stream got cut off because people started singing “Happy Birthday”? And all this happened despite the fact that Google is really good at what it does.


    It sets up a dangerous framework that could be easily abused.

    And these are just the immediate problems with Article 13. The long, paranoid view on Article 13 is that it creates a surveillance framework that can be co-opted for bad purposes. If companies already have upload filters for copyright infringement, why not force them to modify their filters for speech that’s critical of the government? That may sound far-fetched, but in 2015, a mysterious firm called Ares Rights started using DMCA takedowns to target sites critical of the Ecuadorian government, sending at least 74 notices on behalf of “politicians, political parties, state media, and state agencies” in Ecuador.


    https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...disinformation
    Britain's top EC commissioner lays out plan to tackle 'disinformation'

    The UK’s most senior representative in the European commission has set out a Brussels plan to crack down on disinformation campaigns executed by Russia and non-state actors, which he suggests were deployed during the 2016 Brexit referendum...

    ...King told an audience in Brussels: “What once might have been dismissed as fantasy has rapidly entered the world of fact with everything from a referendum on an EU agreement with Ukraine, through a referendum on EU membership to a presidential election apparently being fair game.”


    It’s quite clear they want to regulate truth, and control what we are and aren’t allowed to say. A referendum on EU membership is due to ‘misinformation’ (aka anything that opposes the EU cuz muh Russia conspiracy)
    is a ‘fantasy’? Oh so only now you’re admitting that EU membership is essentially non-negotiable, and if you disagreee you’re a Russian troll. Gotcha.

    Matteo Salvini on the EU’s quest to silence dissidence, on Facebook, Youtube and Russian fake news elsewhere. (Turn on captions)

    Last edited by Aexodus; June 21, 2018 at 11:56 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by elfdude View Post
    I don't understand, clearly if white people simply made better choices to treat others as their equal there wouldn't be all of this justified pushback.

  2. #2

    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    I fear the UE will implode unless European Commission is reformed or done away with. They aren't economists, they're politicians, bureaucrats and lawyers who have this silly idea of 'european order' and very little insight into what makes high tech industry grow (something the EU is very much behind USA, Japan, S. Korea and China right now). We have this self-appointed authoritarian body dominated by members from 'old EU' who primarily use Commission as a bludgeon against 'unruly children' that joined the 'european family' at a later date, in particular anything south and east of Berlin-Paris axis, minus Italy.

    Meanwhile, the actual bodies for free, democratic discussions between member-states such as European Parliament have virtually no power to create or amend european law or treaties. It is a sign of the times when member-states seek to settle policy-making questions in informal meetings and through either lobbying or discrediting the European Commission, clearly avoiding European Council and Parliament that would offer a less polarising discussion when it came to immigration, economic growth and security (including the latest Nord Stream 2 fiasco, where the bloody United States of all countries had to get involved, because no one within EU could apparently stop unlawful favoritism of Putin's regime by the Germans).

    The chances of this proposal going through as advertised are low, because the law would be impossible to enforce and the likelihood of universal acclaim (agreement of 28 member states) is even lower. In particular the 'tax' thing is baffling, as well as the idea that all content has to be screened for copyright infringement and licensing rights. In essence, we'd have to create a strong AI that would comb through the legal code of all major countries and decide on a case-by-case basis whether Joe Shmoe the Youtuber has the right to a 3-second fragment from a Pixar movie when he's commenting on the latest Pixar movie and if he is allowed to monetise the video through Youtube adsense and/or Patreon, then whether linking that video to forums and social media (like reddit) is allowed, and what about forums and social media that run advertisements to fund their operations (virtually all of them), would it be legal for them to drive traffic to their site by linking to Joe Schmoe's video to increase their ad revenue?

    This is essentially absurd law, the way it has been conceived at least. Worst case scenario, law is passed in some amended form and has a chilling effect on youtubers, forums, social media, small and medium business - i.e. anyone who can't afford or be bothered with contesting a copyright strike and hiring a law firm to bludgeon through bureucracy. Passing this law is essentially lobbying for big publishers and media aggregates than can afford both legal and extra-legal help to protect their interests, because the law fundamentally rests on the idea that each content creator on the internet (which includes every random person posting in this thread, for instance) needs to run a 1-man enterprise with company headquarters and international business account, to make himself liable to any and all lawful requests about his rights to publish content (licensing rights), and to enforce any necessary fees for breaking the law.

    PS. The whole affair discredits EU internationally and EC internally. Law was poorly written, largely in secret, without prior consultations with a wide range of academics, business partners and the public (let alone any sort of official discussion between member states) - even the research supposedly in support of the law, conducted on request of European Commission, has not been published, making it impossible for any third-party to question the academic rigor and value of it. We aren't even talking about speculative economic gains or losses for EU after passing this law at this point - because no research into the matter has been published by EC, or independently conducted by third parties to either support or discredit EC's position - there is actually zero information, zero research available for discussion on the matter.

    Personal opinion: it's bold-faced lobbying, with little to no interest whether the law affects EU's economy and digital market negatively or positively, and to what degree. EC isn't even hiding that it isn't interested in a discussion or proper academic review, it simply believes it has the right to enforce the law and everyone is supposed to fall in line.

    PPS. Notice how European Commission skips the debate in European Parliament, by directly going through a committee that supposedly 'reviewed' the law and spoke in agreement of it. Did they even read the damn thing?
    Last edited by lavez; June 21, 2018 at 02:20 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    There is almost no way to enforce this. We've already been through a similar episode where Youtube allowed anyone to make a copyright claim. Hundreds of big Youtube channels were hit, but the fact was that "copyright" attacks didn't accomplish what they set out to do, that is to stop illegal music, movies, and so on from being posted on Youtube. Which is not surprising, there's probably billions upon billions of videos, it's impossible to police them. If the EU wants to police the Internet, they are welcome to try but they won't succeed.

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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    I agree, this is just (at best) hugely out of touch, and (at worst) a decision which only helps a small minority and may easily be used to choke the flow of information or other sharing of posts/images.

    It is impossible to actually force, although they can always give google or similar sites a major pretext to just act agressively and really (in the immediate to mid-term) bring about a bad level of web control. Eg google can do this with threat tactics (it managed to soft-ban threads on various subjects, by officially threatening cancelling google-ads to work on those sites hosting such threads).
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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Aexodus View Post
    Oh yeah, we have no say on what the EU imposes on us.
    Why not? This is sth voted for in the European Parliament. That is a body elected by the people is it not? And it was proposed by the European Commission which is selected by the European Council, ie the elected heads of state/government, and confirmed by the aforementioned elected parliament. That people choose not to care all that much about the agenda of their EU MPs, or what the position of their heads of state/government is during elections, doesn't mean the people don't have a say. Only that they don't use it properly. Worse still, it means they absolve their heads of state/government for things the EU does, with their support, allowing them to distract the public.
    Last edited by Alastor; June 21, 2018 at 03:17 PM.

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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Alastor View Post
    Why not? This is sth voted for in the European Parliament. That is a body elected by the people is it not? And it was proposed by the European Commission which is appointed by the European Council, ie the elected heads of state/government, and ratified by the aforementioned elected parliament. That people choose not to care all that much about the agenda of their EU MPs, or what the position of their heads of state/government is during elections, doesn't mean the people don't have a say. Only that they don't use it properly. Or worse still, it means they absolve their heads of state/government for things the EU does, with their support, allowing them to distract the public.
    Sure, but the European Commission is not directly chosen by the people, neither is the Council of the European Union. Key word here being directly. Ultimately the composition of these two bodies are down to individual statesmen, not the people. I don't have an issue with this, but I can see why some criticize the EU for not being democratic enough to their liking. Either way, Aexodus does bring up a good point, whether this is enforceable or not, this raises issue of a possibility of hunting down certain parties they don't like and censoring parts of the Internet. I'm not a free speech absolutist, but trying to police it directly rather than its consequences is an exercise in futility and is only useful when you are trying to set up an authoritarian regime. Not that this is what the EU is trying to do, it's far too incompetent and divided to have such motives, despite what some people think.

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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Guardian
    The plans still have to be agreed with representatives from the EU’s 28 governments before becoming law, but the vote reduces the chances of serious changes.
    27 (nice that the Guardian keeps pretending that Britain is in the EU ^_^ )
    By "representatives" it doesn't even seem to mean national parliaments, btw. It likely is just some officials, eg in the euro parliament or tied to it, for each state.
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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    From what I understand from Article 11, it codifies a new copyright rule for linking and quoting news organizations. Online platforms like Facebook will have to pay for a license to have links out to news publishers, and this will theoretically help support organizations that are vital for public information and drive users to their homepages.

    Article 13, dubbed the meme killer, stipulates that major platforms (again, Facebook, Google, Youtube etc) will have to use some sort of system to take down infringing items from the web - when copyrights issues turn up.

    From the text of the directive there are a lot of vague points as to how, why, when this will happen, and the implementation relies on the member-states (as every EU directive) which also raises some suspicion as to how harsh or lax its going to be - according to national legislature.

    Two things are very interesting to me.

    First, that media across the world went beserk about the directive, making it an issue about killing the internet as we know it. Individual users picked up on the hype and now a simple search provides hundreds of thousands of results about this issue with everyone vehemently opposed to it. This gives out the impression that the EU went complete nuts - some weeks after Mr. Facebook was testifying in front of the EU parliament and implying that any form of legislative action on EU's part would basically 'ruin the internet'.

    Hmmm.

    Second, we don't really know how this is going to be implemented yet. The whole hype fired up way too soon with not even the vague wording of the text being in place to have something to support the reaction. Why the haste? This is going to be a long process so how did this became the thing it did so soon? All the while the preceeding directive (GDPR) can bring about extra charges on your connection since it focuses on wifi providers too.

    Question: when did the media start caring about the memes? Or is this just a dumbing down of the real issue to make people angry?

    Lastly, it seems to be there's much ado over nothing. The internet is a tool made free to the public from the very beginning for a reason, being that it has a secondary purpose for public appeasement. Hard to complain if you're laughing at cat videos.

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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sukiyama View Post
    Sure, but the European Commission is not directly chosen by the people, neither is the Council of the European Union. Key word here being directly. Ultimately the composition of these two bodies are down to individual statesmen, not the people. I don't have an issue with this, but I can see why some criticize the EU for not being democratic enough to their liking.
    The Council of ministers is made up by ministers of the various EU states. Themselves, I believe, elected MPs. Either way the point is that all these bureaucrats are appointed and serve at the pleasure of elected officials. This is not different to virtually every state democracy. Take the US cabinet for instance, appointed by the president, not elected. Yet nobody says that it's undemocratic it's there. Hell even the US president himself is elected by the Electoral College, not the people directly. Though there is momentum to change that mainly from annoyed Democrats that still can't stomach Trump won. Also, even if reform could be made to give a more direct say to the people, it would be against the interests of their elected officials to do so anyway, it would take away the distraction listed earlier, not to mention some of their power. So people need to vote for leaders that would want to give them more of a say in the first place.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sukiyama View Post
    Either way, Aexodus does bring up a good point, whether this is enforceable or not, this raises issue of a possibility of hunting down certain parties they don't like and censoring parts of the Internet. I'm not a free speech absolutist, but trying to police it directly rather than its consequences is an exercise in futility and is only useful when you are trying to set up an authoritarian regime. Not that this is what the EU is trying to do, it's far too incompetent and divided to have such motives, despite what some people think.
    No real disagreements here, at least not yet. I am a proponent of free speech and Europe in general lacks a strong framework that protects free speech. Not mention that "tackling disinformation" does sound rather Orwellian. And I have no clue how it could work. What do they even mean when they say install filters? Doesn't google already filter the results it gives? Also I'm not sure about the link tax. I suppose in theory it does put some strain to the target servers what Google is doing and diverts some traffic away, while allowing them to enrich their own service, but a tax? I suppose it should first be examined whether offering snippets actually increases good traffic or if it is indeed harmful to the content owners. If so, then at least there is grounds to discuss it.
    Last edited by Alastor; June 21, 2018 at 04:02 PM.

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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Alastor View Post
    The Council of ministers is made up by ministers of the various EU states. Themselves, I believe, elected MPs. Either way the point is that all these bureaucrats are appointed and serve at the pleasure of elected officials. This is not different to virtually every state democracy. Take the US cabinet for instance, appointed by the president, not elected. Yet nobody says that it's undemocratic it's there.
    The difference is, that Trump is the American President, whereas some of these people are French, Polish, German, Italian, Spanish etc...

    Sure they’re appointed, by foreign countries that is.

    Hell even the US president himself is elected by the Electoral College, not the people directly.
    Difference being that those are the United States of America in that college, and this is not the United States of Europe.
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    Quote Originally Posted by elfdude View Post
    I don't understand, clearly if white people simply made better choices to treat others as their equal there wouldn't be all of this justified pushback.

  11. #11

    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Alastor View Post
    Why not? This is sth voted for in the European Parliament. That is a body elected by the people is it not? And it was proposed by the European Commission which is selected by the European Council, ie the elected heads of state/government, and confirmed by the aforementioned elected parliament. That people choose not to care all that much about the agenda of their EU MPs, or what the position of their heads of state/government is during elections, doesn't mean the people don't have a say. Only that they don't use it properly. Worse still, it means they absolve their heads of state/government for things the EU does, with their support, allowing them to distract the public.
    Here is the thing though, it wasn't 'voted for' per se in European Parliament, merely a select parliamentary committee spoke in favour of the law, and recommended it to a vote among member-states of European Union (which means nothing more than 'parliamentary committee didn't find the proposal to violate existing body of European Law, didn't want to propose any amendments to it, and therefore recommends it to a vote at a later date'). Similarly, European Council isn't a legislative or executive branch of EU, it is only a body for coordination (facilitating discussion) between member-states. European Commission respects the right of national governments to make sovereign decisions, however that right is also limited by the very act of joining the European Union.

    The actual body with both executive and legislative power in EU is the European Commission, and it speaks for entire European Union despite the fact it's not a democratic body unlike the European Parliament (which at best can pass a resolution or recommendation - either of which has no legal meaning in EU whatsoever). Parliamentary committees plus European Commission have far more sway than any discussion or debate within the Parliament itself, until the matter comes to a vote between member-states - and yet there have been cases where law has been enacted without a member-states vote, or enacted with a simple majority, or enacted by some member-states but not others, rather than unanimous agreement of all member-states.

    To put it in simpler terms, the chances of this proposal going through as a separate piece of legislation are nil, and the matter would have to be put up to a vote between member-states - on the other hand, if European Commission settled for a more sneaky approach, such as modifying existing piece of legislation (for instance, Digital Single Market within the European Single Market framework, or going through the Copyright law of European Union directly), then first the member-states would have to prove that the amendment is significant enough to change the character of previously-agreed-upon body of European Law to warrant a discussion between European Commission and the member-states, then those member-states would have to convince the European Commission to either drop the case (withdraw the amendment proposal) or put the matter to a vote.

    Traditionally, European Commission has been known to back down when facing severe pressure, however technically speaking, it is able to sneak changes to the law without putting the matter through a vote, only giving the member states a deadline by which the law is to be adopted. European law is constantly evolving and yet we don't see national governments voting on each and every change, because even what can or cannot be voted on is regulated through the European Law that all member-states have to abide by. As I said, politically, the chances of this going through are nil, however, if both national governments and the public choose to ignore this issue and EC simply goes ahead with the plan, the matter won't be dropped anytime soon.

    I know that how EU actually functions is somewhat of an enigma to people both inside & outside the EU (what with uncertain status of United Kingdom at this point), mostly because it is an economic and monetary union (with an indefinite deadline to join the latter for all member-states) and politically a confederation with what borders on federal law and federal legislative and executive bodies, but for all practical purposes it is a single economic market with a military, political and legal dualism, despite all the attempts to market European Union abroad as some sort of unified great power able to project it's military, economic and diplomatic power on global arena, where at best it's a regional economic power that's both united in some matters (driving investment, services, technology and trade), and divided in most others (immigration, education, healthcare, welfare, energy security, embargoes, agricultural subsidies, ukrainian membership and eastern balkans expansion).
    Last edited by lavez; June 21, 2018 at 04:39 PM.

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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Aexodus View Post
    The difference is, that Trump is the American President, whereas some of these people are French, Polish, German, Italian, Spanish etc...

    Sure they’re appointed, by foreign countries that is.

    Difference being that those are the United States of America in that college, and this is not the United States of Europe.
    They are appointed by all countries, not just foreign ones, according to rules agreed by all national governments. And why does it have to be called the United States of Europe? European Union is clear enough. Every, then, member state agreed to the formation of that Union, no state has been coerced into joining since.
    Last edited by Alastor; June 21, 2018 at 05:32 PM.

  13. #13

    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Alastor View Post
    The Council of ministers is made up by ministers of the various EU states. Themselves, I believe, elected MPs. Either way the point is that all these bureaucrats are appointed and serve at the pleasure of elected officials. This is not different to virtually every state democracy. Take the US cabinet for instance, appointed by the president, not elected. Yet nobody says that it's undemocratic it's there. Hell even the US president himself is elected by the Electoral College, not the people directly. Though there is momentum to change that mainly from annoyed Democrats that still can't stomach Trump won. Also, even if reform could be made to give a more direct say to the people, it would be against the interests of their elected officials to do so anyway, it would take away the distraction listed earlier, not to mention some of their power. So people need to vote for leaders that would want to give them more of a say in the first place.
    The council is made of ministers and who the ministers are depends on the issue they are discussing. If it's environmental standards, then it will be environment related ministers, agriculture, agriculture ministers, etc. I'm pretty sure that most ministers are appointed, not elected, by their governments. I.e. I know that in France, ministers of the interior, agriculture, etc are appointed by the Prime Minister and confirmed by the Parliament. Your example also serves to prove my point. We elect a President, who then chooses his cabinet. The cabinet is most certainly not democratically elected. Just like laws in the US are not made by Democracy. Hence when Congress passes laws the public doesn't like, there are clamors that a law is undemocratic because people are against it, etc. Representative democracy is specifically designed to
    limit the power of democracy because people can't be trusted to directly understand the things they are voting for. This is especially so for EU institutions, where so many decisions and government bodies are not within the power of the public to strongly influence. The more "insulation" there is between the people and the institution, the more undemocratic is is.

    No real disagreements here, at least not yet. I am a proponent of free speech and Europe in general lacks a strong framework that protects free speech. Not mention that "tackling disinformation" does sound rather Orwellian. And I have no clue how it could work. What do they even mean when they say install filters? Doesn't google already filter the results it gives? Also I'm not sure about the link tax. I suppose in theory it does put some strain to the target servers what Google is doing and diverts some traffic away, while allowing them to enrich their own service, but a tax? I suppose it should first be examined whether offering snippets actually increases good traffic or if it is indeed harmful to the content owners. If so, then at least there is grounds to discuss it.
    This will probably have zero effects if I'm being honest. I just don't see this being in any way practical. So while there's no point in fear-mongering over this, it's certainly fair to criticize it as a waste of time and yet another reflection of how Europe misunderstands free speech. Not that I am against certain limitations on free speech, indeed there are many ways to limit free speech in a way that's beneficial to society. ESRB ratings have a use for example, even though they limit free speech. Would you want a 12 year old to have a torture simulator without his parents knowing about it for example? Or maybe a Nazi propaganda TV channel available on basic cable? Probably not, but this is why restrictions have to be very careful and extremely specific, lest they be interpreted in a broad manner for the use of silencing dissent.

    Europe should reflect on whether copyrights are really an issue. Netflix has almost completely ended my pirating tendencies. Quite frankly, strict enforcement of copyrights will mean less money for Hollywood studios and actors, which I don't see as a bad thing. Maybe they should have less money to figure out a more sustainable business model. Similarly with music, and while that may mean less music in general, I'm not particularly bothered by the prospect of having one less Taylor Swift or perhaps the actual Taylor Swift having to settle for one Ferrari instead of two.

    If this is a move to hurt Google's Youtube business, maybe crack down on tax breaks for offshore companies instead of trying to impose unrealistic copyright laws.

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    Alastor's Avatar Senator
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    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sukiyama View Post
    The council is made of ministers and who the ministers are depends on the issue they are discussing. If it's environmental standards, then it will be environment related ministers, agriculture, agriculture ministers, etc. I'm pretty sure that most ministers are appointed, not elected, by their governments. I.e. I know that in France, ministers of the interior, agriculture, etc are appointed by the Prime Minister and confirmed by the Parliament. Your example also serves to prove my point. We elect a President, who then chooses his cabinet. The cabinet is most certainly not democratically elected. Just like laws in the US are not made by Democracy. Hence when Congress passes laws the public doesn't like, there are clamors that a law is undemocratic because people are against it, etc. Representative democracy is specifically designed to
    limit the power of democracy because people can't be trusted to directly understand the things they are voting for. This is especially so for EU institutions, where so many decisions and government bodies are not within the power of the public to strongly influence. The more "insulation" there is between the people and the institution, the more undemocratic is is.
    Even if they are appointed(I assume that varies), they are still appointed and serve at the pleasure of elected officials. My example proves your point how? First, you don't directly elect a president, the EC does, or there wouldn't have been a president Trump. Second, your argument I would say serves my point. As I said, this situation is not different to the way most democratic national governments work. Which you confirm by saying it's the point of representative democracy. You can argue the people have more of a say in some democratic systems than others, but my point was that they have a say in the EU. The populist hyperboles of Brexiteers are simply misleading and have gotten quite tiresome by now. All the EU people have to do, is hold their elected officials accountable for the actions they too support. Instead of falling for their disorienting tactics (the Brussels boogeyman) and giving them a free pass. Going down that road can only do harm.

    Either way it is a bit off topic, so this is all I have to say on this for now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sukiyama View Post
    This will probably have zero effects if I'm being honest. I just don't see this being in any way practical. So while there's no point in fear-mongering over this, it's certainly fair to criticize it as a waste of time and yet another reflection of how Europe misunderstands free speech. Not that I am against certain limitations on free speech, indeed there are many ways to limit free speech in a way that's beneficial to society. ESRB ratings have a use for example, even though they limit free speech. Would you want a 12 year old to have a torture simulator without his parents knowing about it for example? Or maybe a Nazi propaganda TV channel available on basic cable? Probably not, but this is why restrictions have to be very careful and extremely specific, lest they be interpreted in a broad manner for the use of silencing dissent.
    Actually I would support some of the things you list yes. But as I said, I am an advocate of free-speech. There are better ways to steer public opinion than banning words.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sukiyama View Post
    Europe should reflect on whether copyrights are really an issue. Netflix has almost completely ended my pirating tendencies. Quite frankly, strict enforcement of copyrights will mean less money for Hollywood studios and actors, which I don't see as a bad thing. Maybe they should have less money to figure out a more sustainable business model. Similarly with music, and while that may mean less music in general, I'm not particularly bothered by the prospect of having one less Taylor Swift or perhaps the actual Taylor Swift having to settle for one Ferrari instead of two.

    If this is a move to hurt Google's Youtube business, maybe crack down on tax breaks for offshore companies instead of trying to impose unrealistic copyright laws.
    I suppose my current understanding of this proposal is limited. Indeed I have only seen it discussed here. But I did not get that the focus is on how the consumers manage copyrights but rather how big techs does. Snippets from news sources for instance that Google can easily use to enhance its service, perhaps to the detriment of the actual creator. As for the tax breaks. While I agree it should be done, unfortunately it's not easy. Especially not when some EU states actually benefit from them to the detriment of others. Which btw wouldn't be happening if the EU for real could enforce its will on the member states, like a true federation could.
    Last edited by Alastor; June 21, 2018 at 05:31 PM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: EU votes for copyright law that would make internet a 'tool for control' (article 11 and 13)

    Seems like fake news, Aexodus. Net Neutrality means Europe's Internet is free and open, unlike America, where corporations can pick and choose what content to allow people to see.

    A lesson people learn the difficult way: if you don't like the business practices of a private corporation, you can often start or frequent another. If you don't like the policies of the government, you are crap out of luck.
    Best ever description of the Mudpit.

    Quote Originally Posted by mongrel View Post
    This is what radicalization looks like, when someone dwells rather too long in the darkest recesses of online bigotry and feels the need to project this filth on others as if they were the honeyed words of some messiah guru or mahdhi.

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