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  1. #1
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    Default Europe just approved copyright rules that could change the internet

    It's by no means is a done deal, but earlier this week European lawmakers voted to approve controversial copyright reforms that have been in the works since 2016 that could transform the internet as we know it.

    The new rules still must get final approval from the European Commission and EU member states, but could force companies like Google and Facebook to stop users from uploading copyrighted content and to share revenue with writers and musicians.


    Two controversial sections—Article 13 and Article 11—would force technology platforms to police digital content by automatically evaluating intellectual property before anything is uploaded and make news aggregators pay to license links to posts. This would ensure that musicians, artists, filmmakers, photographers and media outlets are paid for work that currently drives advertising revenue to technology companies like Google and Facebook for content that they don’t pay for, or say so supporters. Opponents argue that it will transform the web from a free and open platform to a tool to police information and limit ideas.
    But in a bizarre twist, the man behind the legislation, German politician and member of the European Parliament (MEP) Axel Voss admitted he was apparently unaware of what exactly he voted for:

    Emanuel Karlsten, a reporter for Sweden’s Breakit news site, spoke with Voss after the vote. Karlsten asked about a last-minute amendment that will bar the filming of sports events. The MEP replied n a recorded conversation, “This was kind of mistake I think by the JURI Committee. Someone amended this. No one had been aware of this.”

    European Parliament press officer John Schranz at that point broke in to explain that he was aware of the provision in question, calling it “amendment 76.” Schranz said that the amendment doesn’t bar individuals from filming sporting events. Rather, “the main target” is online betting companies enticing viewers to their sites with video that they have no right to film. He objected to the fact that the “Greens and others” interpret the provision as having a much wider application.

    But the MEP Voss admitted, “I didn’t know that this was in the proposal so far, so of course I have to deal with it now. I do not consider that the commission and council will have this inside the proposal.” Voss added that “because of the time pressure” and general focus on other, more notable aspects of the law, it’s possible that the measure was insufficiently scrutinized. But he reassured Karlsten that MEPs will be meeting again to go over the law in its entirety. “Of course we have to discuss this,” he said of the provision in question.
    Wow. Stay tuned, because this is going to get very interesting as it develops further.

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    Yeah, wow. This will turn out to be very interesting indeed. Axel Voss doesn’t know exactly what he voted for is laughable. It makes no sense.

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