European Union approves controversial internet copyright law, including ‘link tax’ and ‘upload filter’
The European Parliament voted on changes to the Copyright Directive, a piece of legislation intended to update copyright for the internet age. MEPs approved amended versions of the directive’s most controversial provisions: Articles 11 and 13, dubbed by critics as the “link tax” and “upload filter.” Article 11 is intended to give publishers and newspapers a way to make money when companies like Google link to their stories, while Article 13 requires platforms like YouTube and Facebook to scan uploaded content to stop the unlicensed sharing of copyrighted material. Critics say these two provisions pose a dire threat to the free flow of information online, and will be open to abuse by copyright trolls and censors. Defenders of the Copyright Directive and its controversial clauses say this is an unfair characterization. They point to existing laws and newly-introduced amendments that will block the worst excesses of this legislation (like, for example, a law that excuses parodies and memes from copyright claims). They say that the campaign against the directive has been funded by US tech giants eager to retain their control over the web’s platforms.
EU approves controversial internet copyright law, including ‘link tax’ and ‘upload filter’