EU Endorses Tougher Copyright Rules For Tech Giants Including Facebook and Google

EU

The European Union uplifted the new move launched by the European Commission two years ago in order to protect Europe’s creative industries. These industries roughly employ 11.7 million people in Europe.

According to the president of European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, “In order to complete Europe’s single digital market, the missing piece of copyright reform must be found and given its place.”

The new rules will compel tech giants including Google and Facebook to sign the licensing agreements with news publishers, authors, performers, musicians, and journalists in order to use their work.

The European Parliament showed a green signal to the proposal submitted last month marking Europe’s creative industry against the tech giants, consumer groups and internet activists. The change was opposed by several countries including Finland, Netherlands, Italy, Poland, Sweden and Luxembourg, Wikipedia also taken down several European sites in a protest last month.

However, 19 countries are still in the favor of copyright reforms, France and Germany are among the countries that endorse reforms while Belgium, Slovenia, and Estonia abstained from making the decision.

If the new rules are enforced the tech giants including Google, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and other online platforms have to set filters to prevent users from uploading and sharing copyrighted material.

According to Google, the new rules would hurt Europe’s creative industry as well as the digital economy, critics also argue that it would only hurt low-cash smaller companies rather than giants like Google and Facebook.

Poland in a statement said that the revamp is actually a step backward rather than forward because the new rules might pave the ground for censorship.

Critics and lawmakers would oppose the reforms and take their case to the court but it would take time and it is difficult, however, the best thing to do is to monitor the implementation which has to be fair, said Julia Reda, Lawmaker European Pirate Party.

Several European Media organizations backed the move including European Magazine Media Association, European Newspaper Publishers Association, The European Publishers Council, News Media Europe, and Independents Music Labels. The countries in the European Union will have two years to transform the copyright rules into their respective national laws.

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