"internet platforms that organise and promote large amounts of copyright-protected works uploaded by their users in order to make a profit"
That's actually a lot of limitation. From my understanding: "organise and promote" means it is not simple hosting, and "in order to make a profit" excludes organizations like Wikimedia Commons and "large amounts" most likely excludes smaller websites like fan sites, and "uploaded by their users" exclude search engines.
It is clearly meant to target a form of abuse that is much too common in the "internet as we know it". It is mostly apparent in sites like PornHub. They live by monetizing content they don't have the rights for, and they use their status as a platform as a way to stay legal. I think YouTube admitted that in the early days, they voluntarily turned a blind eye to copyright infringement as a way to grow ahead of their competition.
It is unfair to legitimate companies who do their best to make sure their content really is original or properly licensed.
And if it changes the internet as we know it today, is it that bad? It will push people to self publish instead of relying on "platforms", like the old internet.
As for the potential for abuse, remember that the article isn't finished, it has yet to be completed, ratified, and tried. Public debate is important and we shall not let everything pass, but IMHO, the spirit is good.
- an Internet platform
- that organizes and promotes large amounts of posts
- which are copyright-protected works uploaded by their users
- in order to make a profit as it is an advertisement for y combinator.
What is 'meant' is irrelevant. Important is the letter of the law. Besides, 'meant' is a very dangerous word when used by politicians as jaded as the EU folks. It is a way to whitewash unpopular laws, and make them look reasonable when they are in fact the complete opposite.
Fundamentally, laws have jurisdictions that they are valid in. Imposition of a law outside of a jurisdiction is problematic at best, as it enables some bad actor countries (pick and choose who you want to consider to be in this group) to export their internal battles globally.
A great example of this is the US's FATCA rules, which have resulted (at least initially) in many non-US banks denying banking options to US citizens. Due to the threat built into the law, of being unable to leverage US banking system, if they fail to comply.
As someone else commented, the road to hell is paved with "good intentions". Solutions will emerge to route around the liabilities and costs this creates, but probably not initially.
And it will certainly be in trouble people decided to use it to post an entire Harry Potter novel and it becomes the go-to place to read it.
But Hacker News has moderators, and in practice, these posts are aren't likely to stay long, therefore fulfilling Article 13 obligations.
I'm pretty sure that movie quotes are not copyright-protected. And the last point in the article seems to be there to protects such uses explicitly.
As for the potential for abuse, I don't know, I am not a lawyer. But as I said before, it is just a directive, not a law, and it is incomplete. The spirit is all we have now, there is still a lot of work to be done on the letter.
They are almost certainly copyright protected, with copyright law provisions granted for certain fair use purposes.
Interestingly, the U.S. is slowly moving toward a more continental-style legal system while the E.U. is actually moving toward a more judge-made law system. That's because fragmented jurisdictional power in the E.U. has forced European judges (at both the national and EU level) to embrace de facto law making powers, and increasingly embracing doctrines that look exactly like stare decisis. (French-style civil law is a relatively recent development, anyhow; Europe isn't adopting the English system so much as reaching back into their own legal traditions to find a similar model of jurisprudence.)
By contrast, the bitterly partisan, winner take all politics in the U.S. has seen both the Democrats and Republicans attempt to centralize more power, both at the state and federal level. And judges, especially at the Federal level, increasingly eschew their law making role (albeit inconsistently). This is, arguably, why many common law copyright doctrines long relied upon by the open source community have begun falling to the wayside; judges increasingly prefer sticking to the strict letter of the statutes, effectively discarding the old doctrines that channeled and constrained their application.
"Judicial Conservatives" in the US disagree with "Judicial Activists" on whether (or to what extent) it is OK to creatively interpret laws (including the Constitution) to get preferred outcomes.
But all common law systems take for granted that judges fill in the inevitable gaps in the law by setting precedents. They can't just interpret it ab initio each time (which in principle is what they are supposed to do on the Continent, though I don't know about practice).
So for example, suppose a city bans anti-abortion pamphleteers from operating on the street outside an abortion clinic. Does that violate the 1st Amendment? Does it matter whether the pamphleteers are quiet or noisy? Does it matter if the exclusion zone is 10 feet vs. 1000 feet?
The text of the constitution is too compressed to answer those edge questions directly. Instead judges have come up with finer-grained rules to satisfy the general requirement of the text, and try (or claim to try) to apply them consistently. Developing these rules is lawmaking.
UPDATE: To be clear, I am very much against this law. The collateral damage will be immense. But the politicians who want this law, they simply dont care.
 e.g. https://www.bl.uk/business-and-ip-centre/articles/fair-use-c... for UK and https://www.copyright.gov/fair-use/more-info.html for US
Romania has already deployed GDPR as a weapon against its press . I also have a short list of anecdotes of economic activity (start-ups and other new market entrants) that would have happened in the EU but, in large part due to compliance costs–including GDPR–wound up happening outside the EU.
Giving people in power broad discretion with the law and then counting on them being nice is a delicate strategy. It counts on every administration being benevolent.
> Romania could just have used another law or just made a new one to harass the press
There is a big difference between using the authority of the EU, through an EU regulation, and passing a domestic law to go after people you don't like.
More broadly, this argument can be made against any over-reaching law. Just because some hypothetical law could be bad doesn't make an ambiguous law granting widespread power to select bureaucrats okay.
The information is requested by the national GDPR enforcer so it bypasses the prevention written in the GDPR about news leaks.
Now there's a trial going around with this which blocked any further spread of that information until it's solved. It can be easily seen how the GDPR can be weaponized.
So the pretext they're using is that they want to see the information to make sure that the news organisation is not selling it or mishandling it to other third parties. In the process, they'll be able to get the information and maybe it will go to the people involved in the corruption charges (which is the head of one part of the Parliament).
For example, can't you check for all data to verify that the business is not doing anything with forbidden individuals or countries? (think OFAC)
I don't think GDPR allows anything more than any other law.
It's like a factory that dumped toxic waste into a river complaining that, because of a ban on dumping toxic waste into rivers, they now "have to" dump them to nearby meadows instead, and that makes local customers unhappy.
"Detrimental effect on user experience" is an intended effect that clearly signals the company doesn't want to stop abusing its users.
Every business: "Stuff in here causes cancer."
Every customer: "Okay."
Every customer: "OK."
They're not required to unless they're using cookies for something other than providing better experience. Also, that's cookie laws, not GDPR.
It's more like:
GDPR: "We see you doing X, Y and Z which are pretty abusive. We want you to not do X, Y and Z, but if you absolutely must, you can only do that to volunteers and you can't deny service to people who do not volunteer. Oh, and it really must be opt-in."
Every business: "Hey, we do X, Y and Z. That okay? [x] no >>> [ ] <<< !! YES PRETTY PLEASE".
GDPR is a massive win for the individual.
Cookies are a separate law and entirely unrelated to GDPR.
Also the annoying "this is what we are doing, you have to agree to this to proceed" is explicitly forbidden for the GDPR. So your criticism does not apply.
The status quo where corporations make vast profits peddling ever finer-grained user data unbeknownst to the consumer with no oversight is not good. A cultural shift is necessary. I'm glad to see the EU has the stones to tackle the issue because there is zero political will stateside for any political action other than driving corporate profits masked by populist appeals to xenophobia and whatever other irrelevant distractions they can cook up.
As an American who spends a lot of time in Europe, what I have noticed is that a majority of local news sites in the US block me from accessing them using IP geolocation.
The problem comes when a nation decides to use those rules in a way that is detrimental to the populace or a service they see as troublesome.
AFAIK, no independent lawyer can sue you for violating the GDPR. Only the German regulatory body could sue them.
Now I don't know German law, as I'm not German, but it felt like they were really afraid that it could happen.
law need to be tested trough time, because it will be used by the next party in power for hundreds years, whether you like the party in power or not.
the only reasonable way to reason about law is full on pessimism.
it's like we already forgot the tyranny that was going on less than a century ago and was acquired through escalating legal abuse.
I don't get it. How is GDPR an attack on general purpose computing?
They are not blocked. They have chosen to take their services offline because they don’t think changing their business model such that it no longer depends on aggressively tracking their users is worthwhile or cost-effective. Which is fine by me imho.
I don't agree that if a business chooses not to operate in a country, because it's unwilling to spend the money required to comply with the country's laws, that that is equivalent to censorship.
Another person's personal information is not protected speech.
I was fine with that transaction. In fact, I would rather have them sell my data instead of charging money.
Consumers have a choice on whether or not they want to go to these sites, it's not like they are forced to give away their personal information to news sites.
I would say the GDPR blocking news sites is a net negative because it denies consumers the choice to read news stories.
And I always thought (back in my more naïve days) that I read the site in exchange for being advertised to. Point being, the exact details of the transaction were never shown to the visitors. GDPR fixes that by forcing companies to state the terms of this transaction explicitly, and actually ask the visitors if they're willing to participate in it.
GDPR isn't blocking any sites, it's only disallowing a very particular way of getting users to give up their data and then monetizing that data. Nobody is entitled to their business model working forever, and some companies prefer to shut off a large segment of their market instead of updating their business model. It's their choice.
*metaphors can get quite silly
Self blocking in response to a law to avoid the penalties under the law is being blocked by the law.
That's all there is to it. GDPR isn't banning news sites, or other companies; it's banning a very particular set of antisocial business practices.
The problem isn't only adjusting business models. It's proving you've adjusted your business model to twenty-eight EU regulators. If one of them misbehaves, you now have to wage a legal fight in a foreign jurisdiction. Against those costs and risks is a minimum required revenue. If that revenue doesn't exist, it doesn't make sense to serve that market. Regardless of your business model.
There's just one large company that decided to block EU visitors: Tribune Publishing. Yes, them blocking Europe is bad. Them owning so many local newspapers that this decision even makes an impact is a bigger problem.
I'm not saying that they're the only ones blocking Europe, but I am saying that we wouldn't think of it to be as wide spread if it weren't for Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun, and LA Times (among others).
* Tribune have troncked Europe because their data control is jazzy.
* Google should really tronc China - fight the Firewall!
If anything, major players deciding not to compete in a market is good to my mind, as a means of increasing a diversity of business styles. Laws like this make businesses pay for the actual cost of thier hidden externalities.
More seriously, GDPR should not extend beyond its jurisdiction. It does though, and there are consequences. Blocking european IPs cost (loss of revenue) must be balanced against compliance costs.
Claims that "they've had N years to prepare" are specicious, if for no other reason than they aren't bound by the specific law. Meanwhile the law introduces a new, potentially large, liability. Which results in companies self censoring by geolocation.
This is what you call an unintended consequence. Remote access to quite a few resources outside of Europe is likely to be restricted should this pass into EU law. As we like to say here, elections have consequences.
FWIW, I support the aims of GDPR, and wish we would get a sane law on this here in the US as well. But I don't want our law extending to others. That would be unfair to them.
The US is probably the biggest "exporter" of laws that are forced down the throaths of all other countries.
HN does not organize large amounts of copyright-protected works, nor are the links to articles an 'upload'. If HN organized PDFs of the linked articles so you could just skip heading to a third party site then we'd be talking.
'meant' is not a dangerous word. All laws require interpretation, which is why most countries have specific interpretation guidelines for legislation and even then sometimes it takes a few cracks at the can to get it right.
That's not something 'dangerous', although it can and does go wrong from time to time. But it's a standard risk of rulemaking as it's the standard process for courts interfacing with legislation or other rule-making texts.
Comment content is governable in the site ToS, where copyright assignment or other methods of defining the respective user/site rights can be dealt with.
Even if it wasn't, your performance in posting implies consent to provide at the very least a limited license to publish content you posted.
So where's the beef here?
Which is probably non-binding or invalid in most non-US jurisdictions and does not address the problem.
> Even if it wasn't, your performance in posting implies consent to provide at the very least a limited license to publish content you posted.
That is like claiming a random user uploading Star Wars movies on youtube is no problem because that user gave them a limited license. That "license" is obviously invalid and Disney can claim copyright infringement. The proposed law now discusses whether "random user" or youtube or both are liable for this.
(1) In a hypothetical world where this law has unbounded jurisdiction
What's the scary remedy for a copyright holder if they already provided a license to publish the published content?
User posts don't make every forum into pornhub. Calm down.
The core problem this law is trying to address is that website users are, en masse, contributing content to websites when they don’t have a license to do so. This behavior is against pretty much all websites’ terms of service.
As there are many users with no money all putting illegitimate content onto a few websites with a lot of money, this law seeks to shift the burden of liability onto the websites. As a policy, it’s not completely unreasonable, but makes the mass content-farm websites like YouTube unfeasable.
The lawmakers fear for their jobs if YouTube shuts down because of their new law, so they carve out a bunch of exceptions to let key sectors of the internet continue operating (with some work to comply).
The broadest of these, implementing automated content filters, is expensive and unreliable. Operators of smaller websites, such as a typical Internet forum, have their own exception. The problem is that the boundaries here are vague and (potentially) poorly drawn, leaving sites like HN (if it were in EU jurisdiction) with a bad set of options:
* Hope nobody notices
* Accept the liability and vigorously police the site manually, probably buying insurance against a judgment
* Rely on judges allowing them the small-volume or non-profit-seeking exemptions
* Implement content filters that are expensive and a terrible user experience
...? Where are you getting this?
Have you read the current copy of the draft proposal? I did.
None of the restrictions are going to kill sites like Youtube (let alone HN). The proportionality element alone makes the 'we need to invest 200% of our revenue into content blocking' myth absurd.
Will some margin need to be shunted into mitigating unauthorized distribution of works that profit the platform? Yes. But that's already the law. It's literally unjust enrichment 101.
My imagination, mostly. Note the policy being referred to in that sentence is meant to be a hypothetical one that was never actually proposed, which shifts liability without any of the safeguards. The second clause is the justification for the various limitations and exemptions bolted onto the basic concept.
> Have you read the current copy?
Not the current copy, no. Last time this came up I tried, but I had a hard time slogging through the European legalese to get to the meat, which I’m not used to reading. That’s why I’ve tried to keep my analysis here in the small, only considering the particular clause that started this discussion thread.
Given how hard it is to read, and the general unhelpfulness of the community (1), it’s probably a good assumption that effectively no one has read the actual text, and instead is relying on the reporting, which feels extremely biased to me on this one.
> The proportionality element alone makes the 'we need to invest 200% of our revenue into content blocking' myth absurd.
You should consider making this the lede instead of burying it three replies deep. This shows that the entire discussion about the other clause is moot, as there won’t be a problem in our scenario regardless of the result of that analysis.
(1) When I did ask for some help getting through the citations last time, the only substantive advice was “just skip that stuff, it doesn’t matter.” If I have learned anything, it’s that everything written into legislation matters.
As an aside, my original reply to you was simply trying to correct your statement “HN does not organize large amounts of copyright-protected works” by means of a counter-example. I think you may be reading things between my lines that aren’t there.
I am, and always have been, calm on this matter. I don’t find the situation scary in any way. I simply enjoy exploring the logical consequences of various lines of thought through the medium of writing, even to the point of playing the devil’s advocate for the purpose of a more thorough exploration of the various issues.
I’m really not sure where my opinions lie on this one, so I’ve been free-wheeling a bit more than usual. I’d like to apologize if my mental wandering caused you any distress. It was not intended.
It's just that there's a big disconnect between what people have read out of the article regarding it's applicability and what remedies actually flow out of it.
Hence the ...so what?
Large sites will have a tool like photoDNA or ContentID to be able to flag works so you can't do something like repeatedly upload something like Aquaman an hour after release. That's reasonable. With respect to a site like HN, it's highly probable the entire article literally has zero impact, unless people take to posting book chapters in comments constantly (and if that happened, you'd expect they should take action in some way).
The proportionality requirement alone alleviates almost EVERY concern people are bringing up. I don't think the legislation is perfect, but it's pretty good, fairly clear, and very easily suited to judicial interpretation to create fair results in unanticipated situations.
EU has a different jurisprudence system based on guidelines and interpretation.
There is a wide range of options philosophically. Confucian courts are even farther from what you might recognize.
So, the short version of the question, in regard to your original comment, how so..?
Those are all copyright-protected works. Literally everything of any substance is automatically copyrighted.
So even reproducing the full title of a news article would likely be an infringement, and then that becomes another thing platforms take liability for/need to filter under Article 13. Whether there's a link or not would be irrelevant.
(It's meant to allow EU news publishers to bill Google and the social networks for distributing snippets/link previews of their content.)
I see this as an unreasonable reduction of previously established fair use. The fact that most of the companies linking to news articles using snippets are American, like Google and Facebook, while many news publishers involved are EU-based hints at a geopolitical motivation rather than any fundamental change to the fairness of this sort of use.
The behavior of publishers in countries where they won this battle is telling: a when laws were passed in Belgium and Spain requiring aggregators to license even small excerpts, Google stopped, and the publishers didn't take very long to offer free licenses.
 Here's one slightly dated example: https://www.sistrix.com/blog/new-data-is-google-or-facebook-...
-- Die Hard
Hold on, that's not true.
The intent of law matters and is codified in various ways, including stating the intent of the law directly in its text. This in turn informs judges (including appellate judges!) of how to evaluate a specific case. In jurisprudential systems, this in turn becomes case-law which further cements the intent of the law as a binding legal construct.
I agree the letter of the law is more strongly binding, but to dismiss intent as irrelevant suggests you don't understand the difference between law and computer code.
Intents may be pretenses which are cheap and mean nothing. The USSR was "for the people" and killed record ammounts of them. Even if ungrounded in displayed maliciousness a "how will this be abused" mindset is its own tradition and I argue a good thing when considering and writing laws.
Since writing a law meant to allow self defense that has text which allows shooting jaywalkers from your backyard is a bad law "to stop offenses in progress" is a bad law. Even if "reasonableness" is applied that leads to more judiciary work, uncertainty and the possibility of injust absurdities holding. Like bashing the head man who is stabbing you right now into the tile wasn't self defense because wood could have stopped him with less force. Explicit text definitions could have stopped the absurdity with say "threat of lethal force by an invading interloper may be met with lethal force" or "proportionate force" even.
I recognize EU law holds different principles but it isn't treating law as computer code. The opposite in my opinion - you are clinically paranoid if you think your compiler will try to twist your code in its favor. You are accurate when describing people and the law.
C compilers have been known to "optimize" code with undefined behavior in such a way as to introduce a security vulnerability that would not exist in the most direct translation of the C code to machine code.
The ONLY person that can use this law is the EU executive (commission). They get to sue, essentially any site they want on the internet. You, EU citizen or not, do not get to sue anyone else, no matter how much copyright infringement, how much damage. You can politely ask the (no doubt up to 10 person) EU agency that the commission puts in charge of this law, but that's it.
The EU commission is not just the only party that can use the law, they are also arbiter of this law. They never have to build a case before court, and of course in practice this means you're declared guilty and punished before your first chance to see a court.
In other words: they can prevent any site they like from getting sued at all and they can sue any site and convict. Then you can fight that decision in court (after, of course, penalties are extracted). In court, you start from an extremely disadvantaged position: you have been tried and found guilty. Effectively, in court you only get an appeal option.
I mean I know the EU is a dictatorship (because the both the positive and negative legislative power is in exclusive hands of the executive alone, the EU commission and council: they can enact any law they like with or without parliament approval and they can prevent any law from becoming law, no matter how much parliament wants it. Or they can change it at will, or ...
But this is even worse than that. This law does not just give them dictatorial power, but essentially makes them an international public prosecutor for internet sites, who does NOT report to any elected government (only reports to the commission which is not elected).
I agree, but that's a matter of opinion. What's factual is that the parent post builds an argument on a false premise.
Further for your info: Hacker News does not "need a filter lest you quote a sentence from some movie", it only needs to take responsibility of you commit copyright infringement by doing so.
I’d happily let Hacker News go if it means other such platforms go with it.
I'll take as a given that many platforms are profiting from copyrighted content uploaded by users, but I very much doubt that the copyright owners would secure any of those profits for themselves if the platforms in question were driven out of existence.
Do you believe otherwise? If so, why?
CENTURION: Has what, sir?
CENTURION: Yes. He did, sir.
PILATE: No, no. Spiwit, siw. Um, bwavado. A touch of dewwing-do.
CENTURION: Oh. Ahh, about eleven, sir.
PILATE: So, you dare to waid us.
BRIAN: To what, sir?
PILATE: Stwike him, Centuwion, vewy woughly!
The movie studio could now hold HN liable.
Well, except that HN is not under EU jurisdiction, so it could probably choose to ignore EU court decisions against it. Bigger platforms of course won't have that luxury, so they'd need to come up with some way of limiting or avoiding that liability... or maybe just blocking EU users.
He's using the quote to make an unrelated point. This wouldn't be considered copyright infringement anywhere you have an impartial judiciary.
These phrases by themselves are open to interpretation in various ways. In particular, what I find dangerous is that these appear to be specific enough to convince people to believe there will be little to no room for abuse, and yet are vague enough to allow a motivated political actor to target someone if they really decided to.
Legislation is written contrariwise, which can seem baffling to programmers unfamiliar with the system.
It doesn't seem to be like this in the US. If you look at laws in the US, they try to define every word and every situation with a lot of cases. Vagueness seems to be avoided, and I'd say it actually doesn't seem too unfamiliar to programmers if used to the jargon
As for vagueness, the issue has more to do with the scope. To me, as a citizen, the expanse of a given law is over the union of every possible interpretation of it that can be made by a reasonable person.
The more vague the language in a given law, the larger the scope for interpretation; the more specific and descriptive the language, the more restricted the scope.
It seems like an abdication of responsibility by duly elected legislators to leave the interpretation of the bounds of a vague law onto a far-removed, indirectly-elected judiciary, rather than passing specific laws defining those bounds more carefully from the get go. Why not just create a single law "Enforce good. Punish evil.", and leave it to the courts to implement?
As for why this uproar happens specifically on topics regarding the internet, the audience here on HN has a larger interest in everything to do with it compared to other issues. I do think that the same level of caution should be applied w.r.t. any and all vague laws, regardless of the topic.
The real question is why people take the it's-very-common approach to belittle people's concerns.
A political court is essential to the european project. Absolutely essential.
> GDPR: there will be no abuse
> Art. 13; there will be no abuse
yeah, let's be optimistic!
Single paraphrased/modified quote from a movie, meant to mock the abuse that has, and surely will, happen, under the existing, and new regimes. Fair use, and parody all wrapped up in one sentence.
But what about fandom sites like Wikia? There's mass copyright infringement going on quite openly there, but it's survived under the understanding that e.g. Memory Alpha discussing various topics from Star Trek wasn't causing Paramount any financial harm.
But if the hosters of fan wikis like that will need to become paranoid about that liability they might not host them at all.
But maybe there'll be some meta-foundation like a fanbase version of Wikimedia that'll bring these all under their umbrella, or more likely sites like Wikia will just be hosted commercially by fans in the US blocking EU IPs and fans will need to use proxies or VPNs to browse them.
If this law somehow ends up hurting multinational commercial platforms and opening up a larger space for personal blogs, hobby sites, and nonprofits, I might even consider it a good law on consequentialist grounds. I don't even care about the impact on startups if all they're trying to do is to become the next YouTube.
In reality, though, this is probably just wishful thinking. We have no idea how "organize", "promote", and "large amounts" will be interpreted; Google and Facebook will find a way to comply at least with the letter of the law; and the heyday of personal websites and ramdom phpBB forums are already well behind us :(
Anything with song lyrics or a giphy post would be in danger of additional censorship with this no?
Any kind of web site that allowed user sign ups would be in danger with this pretty much(?)
I can see most of the obvious impetus for this, but don't feel it's going to work out very well at all.
I'm not sure what a smarter version of the legislation would look like.
Maybe it works out, but there is some downside risk here which involves a brand new 'lawyer economy'.
You can see this reaction to the GDPR where the discussion of benefits are hypothetical. Most of these pieces of legislation have predecessors that we can look to for real, practical results. And that practical result is that the governments have mandates to govern the internet in a large, globally-affecting, information/data-suppressing way.
> I'm not sure what a smarter version of the legislation would look like.
It would not exist. Different measures (education, funding, public services, public awareness, existing statute enforcement, accepting the costs of open information, etc) would be taken.
This legislations looks like a train wreck out of nowhere, for no real, pragmatic reason.
Of the 100 or so top issues facing Europe today, is this among them? Really?
Maybe the EU Executive should be elected, like in every other democracy.
All this will mean is that the big tech, Googles and Facebooks of the world, will solidify their position for years/decades to come since only they will have the money/resources to take care of this expensive regulation. New startups on the other hand will stand little chance in this new world.
All these regulations look good on paper. But when you understand their medium-long term ramifications is when you realize how unfairly the deck is stacked now.
On the other hand, it could be said that it is unfair to new companies and rewards those who _already_ broke the rules. They already broke the rules, so it would be unfair to stop them from continuing to be broken is a bad argument, but it has to be a consideration when entrenching existing companies (as they can absorb the compliance costs).
I'm not really sure what the correct answer is, as allowing an ongoing harm to continue is clearly untenable, but you have to ask if this is really accomplishing the ends we want to achieve, and is it the right way to do it.
 assuming no large-scale copyright reform, but that doesn't appear to be on the cards
All these things are very interpretable and can be the root to abuse and mistakes.
"internet platforms that organise and promote large amounts of copyright-protected works uploaded by their users in order to make a profit"
Would include https://news.ycombinator.com as well. It does organize and promote user comments, quotes, references which are of course copyright-protected works as anything created in the EU member states is, including user comments. Now "Hacker News" does not make a direct profit of the content. It is a side-line to a profitable business. It is however trivial to argue that the fact it is a side-line by a for-profit company it must in some way contribute to that. This has been done before.
The term upload does not exclude anything, because there is no legal or technical distinguishable difference between upload and post. The law could have read 'provided by their users' and the legal implications would be the same.
All sites that are for profit and allow anything from their users are affected by this. This would also include online games that allow users to chat.
I don't agree that its intentions are that clear. Nobody likes a leech, but that does not mean that we should kill all animals to prevent leeches.
"And if it changes the internet as we know it today, is it that bad? It will push people to self publish instead of relying on "platforms", like the old internet."
This seems to be a call to the internet being just for the technologically savvy. No great number of people are going to self host and any form of support for people self-hosting from a for profit company will run into article 13. Moreover what I remember from the old internet is not self publishing, but the social gathering on IRC, newsgroups, etc. Something that will be impossible to do at our current scale without for profit companies or government backed services. The first will run into article 13, the second one is a non-starter.
- Small organizations can't support repeatedly going to court argue that they are not "organizing" nor "promoting" content in "large" amounts.
- Small organizations can't take the path to being large that youtube or pornhub did. These now host mostly licensed content, because content producers were forced to go along. They can no longer be forced, and a barrier to entry has been thus erected.
Certainly the popularity of the site is due to the large amount of full scenes that have been available. Debates about who has been uploading the full scenes have been raging for years.
The debate about who is profiting from it and who has lost sales I think is pretty easy to figure out.
That's not how you should write laws.
What is insane is putting in regulation in areas like this instead of just punishing people for mis-conduct.
So in theory yes, in reality I am doubtful.
Implementing regulations for every company as if they are the same is what is absurd here.
There is a difference between making a law that punishes wrongful use of information and then forcing companies to do things a certain way. That's the point here which seems to be missed on most.
Personally, I don't think laws should discriminate like this, and if a law is not good for business overall, it should be shuttered, not targeted. There are exceptions of course, but I don't think there should be on the internet (or information in general).
Keep in mind that mostly we are ADDING regulation not removing with which means that existing companies get the benefit of not having had to deal with the same when they were small.
This is the real problem.
While small sites with a handful of staff, can't do that. People may subscribe for big sites like Facebook and Youtube , but they won't subscribe separately for a lots of small sites.
So blocking ads helps eliminating the small guys while the whales can deal with it.
Not true, they also help the end users, who often get lost in these discussions of big-vs-small companies. Turns out these "whales" everyone is so anxious to target provide benefits to end users, who are often the ones that end up bearing the brunt of the pain.
Net neutrality regulations include vague language that allows "reasonable network management", which is a multi-million dollar legal hassle that stresses small ISP owners. And I shudder to think how Duck Duck Go's programmers will manage to comply with the EU's "right to be forgotten [from a search engine's results]".
I hope the politicians in Washington, D.C. recognize that America is the world's last refuge for small business growth and economic innovation.
If it's individual pages, then probably just a meta-tag?
I think robots.txt could be leveraged for this though maybe.
Yes, they don't have their own crawler for regular websites. They get their organic search results from Bing and Oath.
America isn’t free from regulatory capture, despite being historically better at innovation than either my home nation or my nation of birth.
Well, who do you think wrote it? Not the fish.
In this example, Youtube or Facebook will have more resources to (automatically) detect copyright content than a small content-oriented startup.
This only increases "barriers to entry" for new companies and strengthens the position of incumbents.
According to the article, politicians initially addressed the problem:
> TBC Platforms run by startups (small and micro-sized businesses) are exempted from the law.
but this at risk of being dropped:
> This was one of the European Parliament’s main improvements to the text. Unfortunately, it is now in danger of being dropped in negotiations.
In many ways the EU is a functioning technocracy, and if you ever read through the actual EU documents it shows. They are almost always sound, they are also massively bureaucratic and around 90% longer than necessary, but I’ve never read through something that wasn’t sound.
Disclaimer: I haven’t read up on article 13, but I do read (and sit through) a good deal of EU standards and proposals for EU wide Enterprise Architectural principles, and they are never thwarted by politics.
Sound in respect to very general interpretations and "common sense". The problem is that general laws can touch topics that are way beyond common sense, the room of interpretation is then just so big that it's like a weapon to take out anybody if you only dig deep enough and frame it as a problem for the common good.
The EU is far from "perfectly functioning". It functions pretty well but it's not perfect. There's some non-negligible group in pretty much every country that rightfully has some major gripe with the EU. If there wasn't we wouldn't have things like Brexit. I get that you can't please everyone but if the UK GTFOing isn't indicative of some sort of imperfection than I don't know what is.
This is so deeply wrong it's offensive.
The EU is co-ruled by an opaque system of non elected bodies, under the table deals, and backroom diplomacy.
And those are mostly official establishment narratives -- if you look at critiques from the left (and libertatians) the picture is much much bleaker.
The EU council (comprising of democratically elected heads of government from the 28 member countries)
The EU parliament (comprising of directly elected MEPs from the 28 member countries)
The EU commission president, nominated by the council, approved by the parliament, and standing on a ticket to be EU Commission president during the parliamentary elections
The EU commissioners, appointed by the democratically elected heads of government from the 28 members
Laws are only passed by agreement by the democratically elected council and the democratically elected MEPs.
In actual EU, decisions are made by informal bodies like the Eurogroup, meeting under close quarters and with no documentation, with economic and diplomatic pressure from top dog countries, with satellite states vote how their sugar daddy states ask them, and a whole lot more besides.
Representative democracy, with it's paltry accountability except every 4 years, gerrymandering-schemes (not a US-only problem), typically revoked election promises, backroom talks, corruption, and private interests paying politicians is already undemocratic enough as it stands.
And suddenly removing the voters even further (as in the EU Commission), or adding "bodies" with no officially defined role and protocol, and closed discussions, like the Eurogroup, is "democratic" because those involved were "democratically elected finance ministers" under unrelated to the EU national elections.
With the EU, the process is formalized, opened up for scrutiny at many levels (sure, they could be more, there are people working on that problem), and then everyone can have a say through the European Court of Justice process.
The fact of the matter is that we live in an increasingly globalized world, and we must find ways to live together without resorting to the traditional genocidal ways (which are now practically unsustainable - a serious war on the continent would produce hundreds of millions of casualties). Somewhere, the political sausage-making has to happen.
So just like any other democracy in the world. Do you really believe things are different in the House of Commons or the senate?
I live in a very poor EU country (out of choice) and most young people fuck off to Germany or France because their home states have no jobs for them. They don't come back either which causes a massive brain drain on these places. Ask the so called middle class in Croatia, Slovakia, Italy what they think of the EU and how well it works for them. Avg salary in these places is 500 to 1000 EUR. And if you visit supermarkets all they have is shit. Literally everything like fresh veg tastes like feet because the good stuff that is locally produced gets exported to the rich places. Companies have 2 production lines making low-grade products (despite being the same brand) for these markets. I'm not an arm-chair bureaucrat who forms his opinion on Google. I actually live in these placed because despite all this shit and poverty the people are actually warm.
One more example: thousands of people wiping arses in nursery homes in Germany are working through shady polish, slovenian, etc outsourcing companies where they're stripped of all benefits that a German would enjoy. They work for 500 to 1000 / month (in a high cost country) because their home country has no jobs for them. Then they're being exploited by the rich EU countries.
Again I lived in Germany, ran 2 companies there, lived in France (operated 3 businesses), now I live in Eastern EU. As much as I want the EU to succeed I can't be blind to the hypocrisy that I see every day on the streets in my own surrounding.
Almost all of these things are in the jurisdiction of the member states themselves, and the EU has little power to control them.
If the EU didn't exist, Germany would still be staffing its nursing homes with cheap(er) foreign labour, just done under a visa rather than EU freedom of movement.
If the EU didn't exist, companies would still produce high-quality products for rich markets, and low-quality products for poor markets. (If you want a fascinating example of this, read this Twitter thread about the manufacture of sanitary pads in Africa - https://twitter.com/aprzhu/status/1083278476310913024)
If the EU, ceased to exist, would eastern European supermarkets no longer be filled with "shit", or would local producers continue to export their good produce where they can get the most money for it?
There is a tendency to avoid criticism of the EU and congratulate it for things it does not do, but it is also a mistake to assign all the ills of Europe to it, when blame for them is much more accurately laid on national governments.
Or worse: the care would be become too expensive and peoples arses wouldn't be wiped at all..
It's not as if Poland and Hungary would have been booming economic superpowers if it hadn't been for the EU. The people fleeing their country because of the lack of jobs won't suddenly find new jobs if they can't leave.
The exploitation of cheap, foreign labour is an issue though and it's not just hurting the people being exploited; the natives of the country the exploitation takes place in will see their wages drop if some shady outsourcing company can have the same work done for half the price. Those old people don't want their assets wiped by someone who can barely understand their language either but they need to put up with it because of cost-saving measures that has degraded the level of care. This is something the EU can change, but the many labourers who'd be out of a job if the EU added more restrictions to foreign travel wouldn't agree with changing the policy to make them unemployed.
The double production line issue would just come back in a different fashion if quality goods weren't exported; there'd be no money to be made selling most of the goods, so they either become a luxury product or only the cheap, garbage production line remains.
Despite all the known problems, countries like Albania, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia are all applying for (or already negotiating) a position within the EU. If they would really be better off without the "dysfunctional" EU, they'd form their own bloc or remain independent. Even for poor countries, the EU brings benefits.
Case in point, the EU is already working to prevent/mitigate this : per 2021, local business must pay adequate local wages even to foreign workers.
do you know why they do this? They can see how easy it is to milk the EU for money in ways that benefit these mafia states. The major of Zagreb is connected to the Bosnian Mafia, he just spent some time in hospital (the mafia put him there but you won't read this in the news). The top lawyer of Zagreb is an asset for the mob. If you want to kill somebody here it's possible to make that happen for very little money. Have you been to Albania, or Macedonia? You should seriously go there before assuming that absorbing them in the EU is a good idea. I'm all for bringing in the people of these countries but before that can be done the organized crime there needs to be cleaned up. The result otherwise is that you'll enrich those that don't deserve it.
The TV series McMafia was set in Croatia (even the non-fiction book and the TV show plays out in a global theater). There are good reasons why that country was chosen for the series. You want to meet some dangerous people? I can introduce you to the guy who shot the Minister of Tourism here not so long ago - he is my age and now runs a drug ring in Austria. This is common knowledge here and as normally talked about as the weather.
Ah yes the guy who now runs Rimac (the super-car company that competes against Tesla) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rimac_Concept_One his father is also connected.
My GF's sister was recently alerted by the owner of the building that the mob has asked them to isse them with keys to their flat because they refused to sell it. The person refused to hand it over and alerted her. The poor girl now lives in fear every day.
The Balkan is the wild fucking west. I live in one of the most civilized parts of the region and love it here, because it's also easy to stay away from this all. If you think for one second that the state would want to ( or even could) protect you, you'd be wrong because they're all part of it. If you're rich you don't pay any fines, if you're poor you get fucked. It's always been this way and thanks to globalization it's getting worse (more ruthless competition from foreign mobs fighting over territory).
I can go on and on ... but Misha Glenny's "McMafia" really explains it all rather well.
The gilet jaunes were/are angry about a carbon tax and lack of wealth taxes. Not Brussels or brain drain.
The EU's Common Agricultural Policy, though not perfect, keeps huge swathes of rural Europe afloat. Its regional development funds builds infrastructure in areas that can't afford it.
You can't really blame the EU for bland vegetables either. That's just silly. The French aren't exactly appropriating Croatian tomatoes by force. It just means that (thanks to the EU) producers can get a higher price for their goods by exporting tariff-free to another country, so they do. Why wouldn't they?
Obviously they were victims of the "Kremlin anti-western propaganda"...
Yanis Varoufakis gives good insight into what happened. e.g. "The Euro Has Never Been More Problematic" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rhSg9X3q2gc
Germany should not and can not be made responsible for bailing these countries out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QtrrN2uWUl8
Russia is the most extreme example of the phenomenon.
- lived in France
- now I live in Eastern EU
Seems like you're getting plenty of benefits out of the EU.
Most of the issues you mention, while acknowledging that they're real, are not caused by the EU.
Yet it never is when crossing nations' borders, except within the EU. How can you then say that the EU is not functioning?
> I alone make that possible not some political entity.
Except for the armed border guards, the national rules on who can work in a nation, the police who can deport you if you don’t obey the rules, sure.
Aren’t those often the same people?
On the other hand, in the UK, Tesco, Waitrose, and Sainsbury’s are all at least as good as their German equivalents; and (beyond the EU) even the worst EU supermarket was better than almost every supermarket I saw in the USA.
I never paid attention to the price of groceries when shopping in Germany because growing up poor I always had the attitude not to be stingy with food and only buy what appealed the most. Coming to France I had to pay attention and actually look at the label because I might pick stuff that I simply couldn't afford. Doing this in Germany I might end up paying for regular groceries 250,-- (avg feeding a family), while in France I might pay 800 or more if I didn't pay attention. The first few times had to actually return once the cashier presented my bill.
I live in India, where complaints of brain drain are the main topic of discussion among adults here, and the main thing politicians love to blame when looking for excuses. There are no feasible ways to ""solve"" brain drain without either a) taking away people's choices - North Korea has no brain drain, or b) Making your country's incentives better so the problem becomes irrelevant. If you want b, then the term "brain drain" is bad because it is almost always seen as an attack on the choice of people moving out. Use a different, more specific, and more understandable term.
Germany tackles benefit abuse as migration soars from eastern EU https://www.reuters.com/article/us-germany-immigration/germa...
Germany benefits from the exploitation of Eastern European workers – a shocking documentary of BR television channel https://trans.info/en/germany-benefits-from-the-exploitation...
Europe's 'food apartheid': are brands in the east lower quality than in the west? https://www.theguardian.com/inequality/2017/sep/15/europes-f...
Food brands 'cheat' eastern European shoppers with inferior products https://www.theguardian.com/inequality/2017/sep/15/food-bran...
Trouble with your argument is she’s from the Philippines, which isn’t in the EU.
It’s not even a problem with globalisation, the usual next scapegoat, but a problem with unequal gains being combined with literally exponential growth. The EU does at least try to counteract that by getting all nations to invest 1% GDP in EU projects including projects designed to lift the poorest EU regions out of relative poverty.
> because the good stuff that is locally produced gets exported to the rich places
The cynic in me would say this is an example of the EU functioning very well, for it's intended purpose of funnelling resources to those of the equal who are more equal than others? ;)
They are the winners, not the losers here.
As you say the small start-ups in Berlin & Paris are left in the dust because only the big ones have the resources to take care of this bureaucratic horse-manure.
In the long run we'll continue to dig our own graves while China and the US laughs.
This one's a double edged sword.
Punitive measures on information like this rarely encourage anything. The worst part is people look at the intent and potential effects of legislation as though it is the actual, realized result. I have to assume the reason is a mix of naive optimism, anti-big-web-tech, and the inability to take the bad with the good so e feel obligated to keep shaping things. Real, actual teaching and encouraging and efforts and money and motive and all of that is far different from what's happening here.
At best it will create a divergent protectionist demense while doing nothing to aid viability outside the market - and its help inside is dubious. Even outright banning Google and Facebook won't suddenly make Bing and Yahoo the next big thing. At best they will be the postum to the real coffee.
Yes, it' a strategy of their failing commercial entities to wring a profit out of entities like FB and G who they think are profiting.
Of course it's among the worst strategies available.
What they need is more innovation, not more regulation.
however, it is a good thing. youtube has always been a massive for-profit piracy operation, and they just license and pay the people who are big enough to threaten them. all small content creators get the shaft. even google search is mostly a form of piracy. taking other people's content and slapping ads on it.
google needs to die and it is nice to see the EU helping here.