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Key Polish Political Party Comes Out Against Article 13 (eff.org)
192 points by DiabloD3 3 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 46 comments

Oh how funny.

Few months back when the previous voting took place all of their representatives were voting for article 13. Right now, due to forced coalition most of the current EU parlamentarists got rather bad starting places (giving them low election changes even in light of good voters support) and there were talk about switching parties already.

Now, week later I find out they changed their mind and are going to protect European Internet after being so eager to push this law. Smart, not that surprising yet funny move nonetheless.

Oh, and when approving it they were defending it very vocally. They didn’t pass it by ignorance. That’s for sure.

Not really. In the preliminary voting last year nobody from Poland voted for articles 13 and 11. Most were against and some abstained. I know because I was campaigning for that and sending them emails.

In the next voting still most were against. There was no point at which more people from Poland voted for article 13 than against.


In Poland internet freedom, software patents etc is a big issue since forever. See: https://thankpoland.info/

Anti-ACTA protests started in Poland as well in 2011 and were a big thing, they happened in every city basically and the government had to go back from the deal, which then lead to reverting it on the EU-wide basis.

> nobody from Poland

September 12 everyone from PO voted for censorship:

  Michał Boni (PO)
  Jerzy Buzek (PO)
  Danuta Hübner (PO)
  Danuta Jazłowiecka (PO)
  Agnieszka Kozłowska-Rajewicz (PO)
  Barbara Kudrycka (PO)
  Janusz Lewandowski (PO)
  Elżbieta Łukacjiewska (PO)
  Jan Olbrycht (PO)
  Julia Pitera (PO)
  Marek Plura (PO)
  Dariusz Rosati (PO)
  Adam Szejnfeld (PO)
  Róża Thun Und Hohenstein (PO)
  Jarosław Wałęsa (PO)
  Bogdan Wenta (PO)
  Bogdan Zdrojewski (PO)
  Tadeusz Zwiefka (PO)


That's the second voting. I wrote

> In the preliminary voting

As for the second voting still most europarliament members from Poland voted against.

And it wasn't the final voting, just choosing the version of the VOSS report for further work.

Well guess what, almost half of those beepholes again voted pro acta today.

And by "almost half" you mean "minority" :)

Actually 7 people out of 19.

A less cynical interpretation would be that democracy is still working somewhat well, even in Poland.

Perhaps - but how will they vote when the next copyright 'reform' (which always means more restrictive copyright) comes along, and there's less public scrutiny?

What's with this "even in Poland"? Democracy in Poland is as good as ever. Compared to previous government it is even an improvement.

Speaking as someone who voted for Platforma once, these guys have no credibility today because they don't commit to any program and are fickle. They can't communicate what is that they're trying to do, what's their program, and have no internal consensus on any major subject. Their decisions are based on polls and what they think will get them votes. Polish parties are heavily leader-based and leaders push others around. Current leader of PO is a schemer and back room dealer with insincere smile, he knows how to stay afloat and prevent defeat but not how to win or inspire people.

To expand on that:

Back in 2012 when ACTA was on the agenda, there were numerous popular protests against it in Poland, mostly centered around young internet users. Donald Tusk, then-Prime Minister and chief of the Platforma party, reacted with "The government won't bow down to any blackmail"[1] and reaffirmed his intent to sign the ACTA.

Thankfully a few days later he changed course and refused to sign it, as per the popular demand.

[1] "Nie wyobrażam sobie, by polski rząd ustępował przed jakimkolwiek szantażem" - https://www.wprost.pl/technologie/343029/jutro-podpiszemy-ac...

That’s how democracy is supposed to work, no?

The opposite would be the UK situation where people are slowly realizing that Brexit is a bad idea and the ruling body refuses to back down despite the popularity of the move dwindling.

Brexit is bad for me personally, but I'm sure that respecting results of a political procedures (referenda, elections) is exactly what should be done in a democracy, because not sticking to rules of the game is a direct way to destroy trust, and incentive to vote. "Diminishing support" is what often happens to very freshly elected MPs, governments, or presidents, and it doesn't cancel electoral outcomes.

While I agree from a practical governance sense, having n number of votes on the same issue is still democratic despite it being increasingly inefficient.

As is voting out leaders you don't wish to follow anymore, even immediately.

Still prefer them to PiS

The two parties are not very different. Remember they were in a ruling coalition once, and a few people moved from PO to PiS after PiS came to power.

Poland has no true left wing party anymore, and there are more extreme right voters too. Something is stirring on the right. PiS and PO are different shades of centrist I think. Especially that what PiS does and what it says are two completely different things.

Funny that you say that, because in my opinion Poland lacks the true right wing party. All major parties are left wing, with their economical programs being slight variations of socialists wealth redistribution, and government regulation of pretty much every domain of life. PiS might pretend to be patriotic and conservative but they are following Marx teaching more than God ones in many areas.

People in US perhaps have no idea what is Article 13. It basically says that websites which allow their users to share/upload copyrighted content are now liable resulting in fees to copyright owners. This is big deal in Europe right now although not many in US seems to have heard about it. Lot of European versions of websites are going "dark" in protest.

The law is obviously lobbied by entertainment industry to target likes of YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram etc. However its sure sounds pretty dumb. Next time if I want to backrupt a website, I can just upload tons of copyrighted material there.

Website would only be bankrupt unless it does absolutely nothing to verify content.


And what do you think can be done somewhat cheaply on every blog out there that has a comment function and allows someone to upload excerpts of Harry Potter?

The bare minimum technical solution seems to be excessive. You need some kind of "Shazam for all the things", which can identify copyrighted material by having a small snippet. And for that you actually need a huge database with fingerprints or whatever of copyrighted material.

Please let us know if you have a simple and cheap solution that every blog owner can implement (without high costs).

Let me state first that Article 13 is a very dangerous idea that will have bad consequences.

That said, we're making our Attribution engine (the shazam for all audio-visual content) free to all platforms and rights holders [0]. It's surely not a great situation, but we don't want to stay still and let the small platforms to crumble under the weight of the giants.

[0] https://docs.google.com/document/d/1CLybxCFg_gz4n62UqVr3XEsy...

Is this actually helpful? It seems like there are really two options here.

One is that you can have your own database of copyrighted works, let anyone submit one, and the law considers that sufficient. But then everyone has their own database that starts with nothing in it, none of them really ever have more than 1% of the total copyrighted works in them nor ever really catch anything, and uploading everything to everyone's database is completely intractable so nobody bothers.

The other is that having an incomplete database is insufficient, but having a complete database is still intractable because anyone else can at any time create a new copyrighted work that isn't in it. And then troll you with it because they know it isn't in any database but can have someone upload it to your site just so they can use the law to destroy you. No database will ever contain more than 1% of the total copyrighted works, because they're created by the millions every minute of every day.

So does pooling together like that actually buy you something? It doesn't seem to change the "are you screwed" calculus much one way or the other.

The way we read the article 13 is that platforms have to offer tools to identify copyrighted work, but also the rights holders have to register the work for them to be identified.

That would imply that one database with an obvious way for rights holders to register their content should be the right way to go.

But we will not know up until an EU country actually writes the law.

> That would imply that one database with an obvious way for rights holders to register their content should be the right way to go.

Having a single database seems unusually problematic. If there is only one operator, who is that supposed to be? What happens if/when they give up or go out of business? What happens when they charge monopoly rents or their system is unreliable or full of bugs?

On the other hand, if there is one submission process that submits works to everybody's database and people have their own copies, that seems like it would be of particular interest to pirates -- go sign up as a database recipient and the copyright holders will send you copies of all their works.

It's as if no one has even attempted to think through how this would work.

Limit the comment to 1000 characters.

Any blog or forum needs administration, as part of which off-topic or copyright-infringing messages should be deleted. "Stay on topic and post only content that is your original work".

What is being targetted here are websites that rely on infringement for their popularity and traffic and ad revenue.

Any blog or forum needs administration

I'm not sure why are you stating this like some sort of undisputable truth.

Article 13 will not let Amazon sell books that were pirated (ie. re-uploaded) and claim everything is fine. They do didn't wanted to fix it so now they will be forced to.

For Joe blogger there is proportionality (https://juliareda.eu/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Art_13_unoff... - 4a). And if Joe blogger decides to open comment section then he should read it every so often.

If not then this Harry Potter excerpt would be hard to find among spam overflowing comment section.

So, merely deleting a comment is enough? But that’s what we had before. Aren’t you required to have some kind of upload filter so that copyrighted material never ends up in your comments in the first place?

>So, merely deleting a comment is enough? But that’s what we had before.

This, and the successfulness of GDPR, is why I'm so doubtful over the problems presented about Article 13.

You are ignoring "proportionality" part and "not liable if" part. Yes EU regulators wouldn't be chasing small blogs just like they do not do it with GDPR regulations.

Big boys like Amazon wouldn't be able to get away with this shit (ends up on HN regularly):

https://www.extremetech.com/internet/268109-an-update-on-my-... https://www.forbes.com/sites/wadeshepard/2017/01/02/amazon-s...

Now you tell me how do you make Amazon and similar not to profit off scam? Ask them nicely? Doesn't work.

In debates like this, I tend to mention that UK law has prison time for commercial copyright infringement.

Not being a lawyer, I have no idea how hard it is for a prosecutor to get that outcome.

(So far as opinion, I would like copyright duration reduced to 7 years from publication, but suspect it is easier to make a human-level-creative AI then to change the law).

How would you automatically distinguish between copyrighted material and parody/satire/fair use?

Google seems to have had such a hard time doing so that it has the appearance that they've given up

The Amazon example is not exactly related to the current issue and copyright violation already exists in law.

> Now you tell me how do you make Amazon and similar not to profit off scam?

The fact that they're selling a plagiarized book is grounds for a lawsuit from the author.

For the GDPR, only the regulator can sue. Everyone else can only complain to the regulator. This minimizes the number of possible suits.

For article 13, everybody can sue. And copyright already has lows like grannies without internet ending up in a court for alleged file sharing.

the 2 laws are not even remotely comparable.

>Article 11 is now 15 and Article 13 is now 17 for my fellow inter users from Europe and everywhere else on the planet.


While I would like this to be the case, I don't trust Platforma Obywatelska after they said they would vote against EU Copyright Directive (https://twitter.com/platforma_org/status/1015184834623365120) and then everyone from Platforma Obywatelska voted for it.

The name of the party is misspelled in the article, it should be Platforma Obywatelska (Citizens' Platform), not Platformy.

Every single time, goddammit.

I hope that the Internet doesn't turn into various subnets like US-NET, EU-NET, CHINA-NET .. Article 13 is a worrying development.

We need tougher laws to put these politicians behind bars if they’ve not acted in the best interests of its citizens.

Supposedly you have elections?

Elections are no use if you can’t hold those you’ve elected accountable to the promises and commitments they made.

The downvoter must believe it’s ok for politicians to sell the electorate down the river.

Poland is a pretty young democracy. There are no strong democratic institutions, there isn't much faith in them and people are quite doubtful. After partitions Poland spent a few hundreds years off the map, at the time when many social changes were talking place (at the start of industrial revolution). For a few centuries Poles no longer ruled themselves and there's no strong tradition of civilized debate. Don't get me started about "democracy of gentry", because the class composed at most 20% of society. So a vast majority had no say in what's going on.

There's still admiration for strong figures like Putin, Piłsudski, Churchill, even Stalin. People who don't trust institutions are sympathetic towards autocrats and their displays of strength.

The Polish law works in such a way that a party member can jump ship, join another party and still have a seat in parliament. Then if he's loyal enough they put him on a voting list (in many cases you vote on lists of people, not individuals).

> After partitions Poland spent a few hundreds years off the map

Your being incorrect on such a basic historical fact is quite a red flag.

> For a few centuries Poles no longer ruled themselves

1.23 of a century (1795-1918) is not "a few". Unless my 8 year old nephew is a few meters tall :)

> and there's no strong tradition of civilized debate

Yes and no. It's true that when Poland didn't exist as an independent state, much of the political debate was pushed underground - or abroad.

On the other hand, this very political debate - at least among the intelligentsia - flourished nevertheless. A great many of Poland's finest political writers (such as Staszic, Ściegienny or the Stańczycy) were active in the 19th century.

> Don't get me started about "democracy of gentry", because the class composed at most 20% of society. So a vast majority had no say in what's going on.

"Don't get me started about Athenian democracy, they had slavery".

That's blatant ahistoricism. Democracy of gentry predated the concept of nation in its modern sense. By the standards of the era, this political system was way ahead of its times. The gentry - or the citizens with political rights - accounted for no more than a few percent of the population elsewhere in Europe.

And it Poland they weren't a closed caste, either; you could attain the status as well as lose it. There was some degree of social mobility.

Poor gentry was pretty much indistinguishable from commoners in terms of affluence, and mixed marriages weren't anything out of the ordinary.

Also note that Poland eg. granted voting rights to women as soon as it regained independence (1918). Quite a few democratic countries kept them waiting longer. It wasn't until 1944 in France or 1971 in Switzerland that roughly 50% of the population had no voting rights.

> There's still admiration for strong figures like Putin, Piłsudski, Churchill, even Stalin. People who don't trust institutions are sympathetic towards autocrats and their displays of strength.

I find it doubtful whether Churchill really counts as an autocrat.

And would you care to substantiate your claim of "admiration" for Putin or Stalin?

> The Polish law works in such a way that a party member can jump ship, join another party and still have a seat in parliament.

That's the whole point of democracy. The mandate comes from the voters, not the party. If the voters feel cheated, they shouldn't elect the guy the next time.

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