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Article 13 is almost finished and will change the internet as we know it (juliareda.eu)
438 points by philipps 2 months ago | hide | past | web | 430 comments | favorite





It looks surprisingly reasonable.

"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.


For your info: Hacker news is:

  - 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.
So hacker news needs a filter lest you quote a sentence from some movie.

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.


One way to "fix" this, unfortunately, is the same way some firms "fixed" their non-GDPR compliance. Block European users. More specifically, block users coming from IPs known to be located in Europe.

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.


Yep, it is. The directive applies to Hacker News.

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.


Why would movie quotes not be copyright-protected?

They are almost certainly copyright protected, with copyright law provisions granted for certain fair use purposes.


Keep in mind that "fair use" is an American doctrine, not built into international copyright treaties and often defined administratively (not legislatively) in other countries. And we are discussing copyright law in Europe. Europe uses several itemized exceptions to copyright; a movie quote could fall under 5.3i "incidental inclusion" or 5.3k "pastiche", or in some contexts 5.3d "criticism and review", but there's no overall doctrine that "reasonable uses" are allowed.

According to Wikipedia, fair use is mentioned in the Berne convention https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berne_Convention

That outcome sounds a lot like the outcome of US system.

The law has an exception for quotations.

How can you prove that it came from a movie? You can not copyright words else no one would be able to say anything. That's what trademarks are for.

easy from the perspective of this law: build a db of every line spoken in every movie. Then block all posts containing a line from this db. If this blocks too much, dang provides human appeal.

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.


Is HN a EU entity? Sure they could decide to abide, but legally, the EU has no jursdiction over other countries. It's going to (continue to) break up anyway so this is all rather moot.

Most film quotes on HN would be covered by "fair use"[0]. If someone pasted an entire script in a comment that would be something different entirely, and likely to be picked up by the existing flagging or moderation system. Also, I'm not entirely sure how HN itself can be said to be profit-making, e.g. there are no subscription fees to use it and it doesn't appear to have any advertisements from any advertising platforms.

[0] 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


Fair Use is cold comfort, if we’ve learned anything from the abuse of DMCA.

Fair use is annoying vaguely defined in the law. This means media companies will tell you that's it is so limited as to be almost useless, while the EFF and the courts may disagree. You may hear stuff about "10 second clips are the max allowed by law", but the law doesn't draw any clear likes like that and in fact is usually much more generous. Typically quotes like that come from a single precedent where someone was acting outrageously in many other ways and not relevant precedent for what you're doing.

That's true in the US. EU law actually knows no such thing as vague, court-interpreted fair use. The EU instead has a list of very specific exceptions and limitations to copyright – which member states don't even have to implement, so what you can do varies widely.

I highly doubt they would be flagged and instead upvoted. I have seen multiple instances here where a US website has blocked the EU due to GDPR and some user posts the entire content of the article as a comment.

It would be both - having a copy of an entire article is both desirable for the readers and dangerous to the service.

Companies pay to get their job listings in front of the HN eyeballs. This is advertising.

I feel like we had this exact same argument over GDPR, but no horror stories have descended about Mom and Pop operations run out of business but the evil Brusselcrats.

> we had this exact same argument over GDPR, but no horror stories have descended

Romania has already deployed GDPR as a weapon against its press [1]. 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.

[1] https://euobserver.com/justice/143356


And the EU is trying to prevent Romania from doing it. I don't see your point. Romania could just have used another law or just made a new one to harass the press.

> the EU is trying to prevent Romania from doing it

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.


This is not related to business but there's a horror story with Romania (it's in the EU) asking a news organization to provide informants information related to some corruption leaks.

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.


Isn't that just straight abuse of the law? AFAIK GDPR only protects your personal information, it can't be used to request someone else's personal information (if anything, you could argue that GDPR prevents you from giving out another person's info).

This isn't the police or the parliament asking for the information. It's the regulatory body that does inspections to companies to see if they respect GDPR.

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).


Potentual for abuse of laws is one of the concerns people have about laws.

The subjects of the injunction can likely refuse and appeal to the European Court of Justice, which exists precisely to sort out these situations.

GDPR has had a very detrimental effect on user experience, with never ending popups and warnings about crap nobody understands. And being in the EU there's several US publications we can no longer access.

I can buy arguments that extra compliance efforts make some businesses not cost-effective in Europe, but this particular argument is nonsense.

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.


No, it's more like prop 47: "Hey, you have to warn people if there are carcinogens inside. No penalty for false warnings."

Every business: "Stuff in here causes cancer."

Every customer: "Okay."

GPDR:

Every business: "Hey, we use cookies to provide a better experience. That okay?"

Every customer: "OK."


It's not just the costs, it's attaching a 20M EUR risk to activity that may not even be worth 20M of revenue.

You can thank large media conglomerates for the latter, all it takes is one executive decision for dozens of networks and websites to start geo-blocking Euorpe.

GDPR is still fairly new, and it usually takes a while for the full consequences of complex new legislation to be felt.

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.


These are enforced on a national level though aren't they, in the UK ICO doesn't have the resources to hunt people down and are probably only going to enforce action against major players in the market as they are under the most scrutiny.

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.


An old client of mine, an actual mom and pop operation in Germany was harassed and was almost ran out of business by a law-firm who went around, the moment GDPR dropped, trying to find targets to sue.

Do you have any details? What did the mom and pop operation sell? How did they go afoul the GDPR with this?

AFAIK, no independent lawyer can sue you for violating the GDPR. Only the German regulatory body could sue them.


They received a letter threatening a lawsuit due to the fact that they had a newsletter sign up form without double opt-in feature on their site and some explicit legal documentation missing. Other than that it was a really simple presentational site made in Wordpress. Our business relationship ended years ago but I received a mail from them years ago asking for help in putting those things in because they were afraid of having to deal with legal stuff over such small bs. I obviously did.

Now I don't know German law, as I'm not German, but it felt like they were really afraid that it could happen.


> no horror stories

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.


Does the EU parliament even have parties?

no they forbid dual mandate, they have now groups but those are super nationals. but the country receiving the regulations do, so there's that.

GDPR has a very worthy purpose though: companies were taking far too many liberties with people's personal data. I don't see analogous problems with copyrighted material (there is some infringement, but it doesn't really seem problematic to society).

That's not what it's for. The GDPR legslates what events one can remember (using incrementalisim). It's ultimately an attack on general purpose computing.

> It's ultimately an attack on general purpose computing.

I don't get it. How is GDPR an attack on general purpose computing?


It's not clear what's going on with GDPR, good test cases are only now starting to be tested. But the fact that many American newspapers, for example, are blocked in Europe is certainly something to worry about.

> But the fact that many American newspapers, for example, are blocked in Europe is certainly something to worry about.

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.


You must understand the economics. Newspapers have zero cash on hand these days, so their choice was to fire staff to allocate money for GDPR or not. Seeing how staff is at a minimum, that was the practical option. Result is equivalent to censorship. I'm surprised you don't find this a terrible outcome.

>They are not blocked.

Self blocking in response to a law to avoid the penalties under the law is being blocked by the law.


> But the fact that many American newspapers, for example, are blocked in Europe is certainly something to worry about.

There's just one large company that decided to block EU visitors: Tribune Publishing[0]. 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).

[0] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tribune_Publishing


LA Times was blocked before but now loads fine in EU. The other two are still blocked.

tronc [vt] To make content unavailable in certain jurisdictions due to unwillingness to comply with their laws.

Examples:

* Tribune have troncked Europe because their data control is jazzy.

* Google should really tronc China - fight the Firewall!


The GDPR is very similar to the old Data Protection Directive, which came into force in 1995. Many member states had done a piss-poor job of implementing and enforcing the DPD, which was largely the motivation for passing the GDPR. Directives have to be transposed into national law by individual member states, while regulations are immediately applicable across the entire Union.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_Protection_Directive


I'm not saying there won't be an effect, but having an effect it's why you pass a law. But 8 months in, and the landscape doesn't seem radically altered.

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.


[humor] Given the "quality" of reporting in most of the publications here, we should be thanked for that outcome [/humor]

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.


Have you ever heard about the financial law Fatca? Please read up. What about sanctions of Iran that the US forces the rest of the world to go along with?

The US is probably the biggest "exporter" of laws that are forced down the throaths of all other countries.


American newspapers don't need to care about GDPR. Most websites don't need to care about GDPR. Europe does not get to dictate how non European based websites operate. The GDPR can be outright ignored for a significant part of the internet. I have no idea why an American newspaper would give a shit about GDPR. They could literally put a huge banner up saying "fuck GDPR" and face zero legal consequences.

I’m not sure how accurate that is. It’s obvious to me that American companies larger than mine have cared enough to take action. If they really had no obligation I’m sure they would have simply done nothing.

>"internet platforms that organise and promote large amounts of copyright-protected works uploaded by their users in order to make a profit"

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.


Many of the comments on HN are substantive enough to be covered by copyright, and modern copyright law protects everything protectable whether there’s a copyright notice or not.

...So what?

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?


> Comment content is governable in the site ToS,

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.


Only that, the comments section alone on HN is pretty straightforwardly “organis(ing) and promot(ing) [...] copyright-protected works uploaded by (its) users”, and so whether or not it falls under the scope of this section(1) hinges only on the regulators’ and courts’ opinions of what a “large amount” is.

(1) In a hypothetical world where this law has unbounded jurisdiction


Comments are copyrighted works uploaded by the users of HN. HN organizes and promotes comments. There are certainly a large amount of these comments. Profit motive of HN is uncertain, but it may receive payment for jobs ads? And it certainly operates as part of a for-profit organization.

In the US the letter of the law matters because of how jurisprudence evolved there.

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.


I have a pretty limited understanding, but at first, I would think you would have this the other way around? The US uses a case law system where precedential judicial proceedings modify how the law works in practice relative to how they got written. Besides the UK, most of the EU has a statutory law system, where the law gets applied as written with less regard for previous judicial decisions.

So, the short version of the question, in regard to your original comment, how so..?


I get the larger point you’re making, but I’d guess that copyright-protected works make up less than 0.05% of all content posted to this site and that includes repo links. /new is mostly just TechCrunch articles and things like that. I’m aware that bad faith interpretation of imprecise wording can be used to weaponize laws, and that laws are sometimes passed for this very reason, but it would be an incredible stretch (both legally and colloquially) to claim that phrasing applies here.

Every comment and article written in the last century is copywrited.

>/new is mostly just TechCrunch articles and things like that

Those are all copyright-protected works. Literally everything of any substance is automatically copyrighted.


Those articles also aren't uploaded but merely linked, so the rule doesn't apply.

Another article of the same law (Article 11) would apply copyright also to shortest excerpts of news articles, anything longer than "individual words". (Colloquially known as the "link tax" provision.)

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.)


Sort of, there is a big push in that direction mostly from the EU.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright_aspects_of_hyperlink...


> So hacker news needs a filter lest you quote a sentence from some movie.

"Yipee-yi-yea...mother-fucker." ! -- Die Hard

Done :-)


>What is 'meant' is irrelevant. Important is the letter of the law.

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.


Or they are exceedingly cynical about the arbiters and paranoid about abuses - not a bad tradition when defending rights.

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.


>you are clinically paranoid if you think your compiler will try to twist your code in its favor

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.


Yeah it is incompetence not malice. Although it probably feels malicious to anybody working with it.

There's very good reason for that : this law is yet another example of the EU's new favorite tactic: laws without the justice system.

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).


>Or they are exceedingly cynical about the arbiters and paranoid about abuses - not a bad tradition when defending rights.

I agree, but that's a matter of opinion. What's factual is that the parent post builds an argument on a false premise.


If you have to reference the intent for every trivial case like HN, the letter of the law is worthless.

For your info: Hacker News being responsible for the data its users provide is not a problem for the users, it is a problem for Hacker News and similar platforms who leech off content from the general public for their own profit.

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’d happily let Hacker News go if it means other such platforms go with it.

Why?

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?


PILATE: Hoo hoo hoo ho. The little wascal has spiwit.

CENTURION: Has what, sir?

PILATE: Spiwit.

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!

slap


This would indeed seem to be a copyright infringement in many EU member states. For example, in Germany it wouldn't fall under the quotation exception (no such thing as vague "fair use" here), since you aren't critically engaging with or commenting on the quote, which would be allowed – you just reproduced it.

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.


> you aren't critically engaging with or commenting on the quote

He's using the quote to make an unrelated point. This wouldn't be considered copyright infringement anywhere you have an impartial judiciary.


Your post, right here, discussing quote, makes this fair use.

This is a very poor argument even under basic scrutiny.

Are you sarcastic? It's often difficult to differentiate a Nazi from a nanny.

Please don't break the site guidelines regardless of how wrong another comment might be.

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


"internet platforms", "organize", "promote", "large amounts", "uploaded by their users", "in order to make a profit".

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.


Indeterminate legal concepts are very common, I don't know why this is always brought up as soon as it's "about the internet".

Programmers like to plan for every possible state and define things in the most technical, specific way possible.

Legislation is written contrariwise, which can seem baffling to programmers unfamiliar with the system.


Are you talking about directives in the E.U.? Or the law of a specific E.U. country?

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


My response was in reaction to the parent comment brushing aside the level of ambiguity in the statement, and labelling it as "surprisingly reasonable" based on just another subjective interpretation of it.

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.


Because it's often applied across borders, and in cases of late, potentially by independent bodies of different countries. IME, it's often brought up on any large set of laws, especially those governing freedom of information, and why most people discourage large encompassing new laws over meager ones or none at all.

The real question is why people take the it's-very-common approach to belittle people's concerns.


Being open just means that the judiciary has the room to make it work as cases emerge. Suggesting that this stuff would be politicised - what, the ECJ? - seems unlikely, although I'd be open to hearing of examples of blatant political interference in the EU-wide judicial process.

Is this a joke? Judicial activism by the ECJ even has its own wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judicial_activism_in_the_Europ...

A political court is essential to the european project. Absolutely essential.


> DMCA: there will be no abuse

https://www.theverge.com/2015/6/18/8803571/sunday-times-inte...

> GDPR: there will be no abuse

https://euobserver.com/justice/143343

> Art. 13; there will be no abuse

yeah, let's be optimistic!


[paraphrase] You keep using that phrase "no abuse". I do not think it means what you think it means ... [/paraphrase]

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.


> and "in order to make a profit" excludes organizations like Wikimedia Commons[...]

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.


Hopefully that would mean fans will host the wikis themselves, rather than the advert/tracking nightmare of fandom

A lot of them just won't exist then. Many of those communities aren't organized enough to self-host, and if you can't run ads whoever's hosting it on their personal server is going to eat the cost of hosting it, and getting to the point of running it as a foundation like Wikimedia is going to be hard.

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.


Yeah, the "in order to make a profit" part caught my eyes, too, and I immediately thought of Wikipedia.

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 :(


Are you suggesting there are no more forums online not run bi the big 5? I have not searched for 'powered by phpbb' in some time, but certainly there are many forums / phpfox / buddypress / similar sites out there that are not big companies funded like reddit.

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(?)


The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

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'.


> I can see most of the obvious impetus for this, but don't feel it's going to work out very well at all.

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.


I think that GDPR will in many ways be meaningless, but I don't have a problem with it because it seems 'fair' and 'implementable' at any scale.

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.


Do you even know what you are saying?

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.


> It is unfair to legitimate companies who do their best to make sure their content really is original or properly licensed.

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[1], 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.

[1] assuming no large-scale copyright reform, but that doesn't appear to be on the cards


>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.

All these things are very interpretable and can be the root to abuse and mistakes.


I'm sorry, but you reading the text of Article 13 far more narrow than it actually is:

"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.


If it's defined as loosely as you state, it will benefit big players:

- 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.


THis law has no real function and was brought forward by publishers that want to cash in Google-Money. To hell with it.

I thought most clips on Pornhub were uploaded by the content owners, basically as advertisement for their sites. They are not full length clips usually, or am I way off?

A few.. I'd say percentage are this way (and more today than there were some years ago as Phub climbed to fame).

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.


Must be great to feel that optimistic about the law. Your interpretation is unfortunately just one way to look at it, why would you give the law the benefit of the doubt?

That's not how you should write laws.


I have no doubt the 'for profit' part will be taken out sooner than later. Never rely upon a law where it's seemingly justified by a few extra rules.

This seems like it will benefit the whales more than the fish, as they can absorb copyright infringement costs into their already expansive legal departments, whereas a smaller company will likely go belly up or be chummed.

This is exactly the ongoing problem with the EU they don't distinguish between large corporations and small businesses which really illustrate how clueless the EU is when it comes to the market and the businesses that are governed.

The post explicitly mentions a clause that will make that distinction. The author argues it might be removed from the final text as part of the ongoing horse-trading, but at least it’s clear MEPs do understand the difference nowadays.

If they did they wouldn't have implemented GDRP as it was. The very fact that it might be removed in a horse-trade illustrates my point.

It would be insane to implement privacy and data regulations differently for smaller companies. You would end up with startups having free reign to abuse peoples privacy in order to gain market dominance against their larger competitors who don't have this advantage, and you'd have larger companies near the threshold arguing about and doing everything in their power to stay under their threshold so they can avoid doing things like allowing people to delete their profiles or downloading their data to transfer to a competitor. Smaller or less important leaks would be brushed up under the rug because 'Well, at least they're not BA', nothing good would come of it. If the law is unduly harsh on smaller companies that's due to the realities of dealing with people's personal information in a secure manner, not because the legislators decided to put people before corporations.

No it wouldn't. Large companies can pay for a lot of things that small companies can't.

What is insane is putting in regulation in areas like this instead of just punishing people for mis-conduct.


That's just politics. It would be exactly the same at the national level.

That doesn't make it better. As far as I am aware the US does have rules that distinguish like that.

Implementing regulations for every company as if they are the same is what is absurd here.


I don't understand the difference and where one would draw the line between small and large businesses. What about medium businesses?

Medium is part of small (SMBs')

> This is exactly the ongoing problem with the EU they don't distinguish between large corporations and small businesses

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).


Laws are discriminating by their very nature when they apply the same price on something for a small company vs. a larger one.

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.


Just like adblockers. You can advocate using them, but they only help the big players, because Facebook and such can ask for subscriptions if needed and they can also afford implementing anti adblock measures.

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.


> You can advocate using them, but they only help the big players

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.



The same can be said for every other EU law.

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.


I would imagine you'd be able to simply submit a domain to DDG, they would ask for a txt record or file to be present within the site, similar to a DNS verification tool. Then it would be queued up in a crawler for removal upon verification. Is there something I'm missing?

If it's individual pages, then probably just a meta-tag?

I think robots.txt could be leveraged for this though maybe.


> Is there something I'm missing?

Yes, they don't have their own crawler for regular websites. They get their organic search results from Bing and Oath.


I assume then that Bing will be responsible for this then (or if they won't then they'll need to find a new engine)

The EU doesn’t have net neutrality. I know this because I’ve seen offers which include zero-rating Netflix.

America isn’t free from regulatory capture, despite being historically better at innovation than either my home nation or my nation of birth.


DDG can safely rely on Bing for that.

Kudos for the extended, non-mixed metaphor. I think it works!

>This seems like it will benefit the whales more than the fish,

Well, who do you think wrote it? Not the fish.


In a weird way, this might be EU's strategy to finally deal significant damage to Google and Facebook, as this law will encourage development of alternatives on decentralized peer-to-peer technologies. However, I'm not sure if EU politicians are that smart...

If this is their intention, then the measure might be totally counterproductive. Regulations very often hit small businesses harder than big ones, because big businesses have capacities to deal with them.

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.


It’s not made by EU politicians, it’s made by a combination of lawyers, engineers and public administration majors.

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.


>but I’ve never read through something that wasn’t sound.

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.


Please read Article 13 and tell me it's sound. Spoiler: it's not.

FAANG will be pissed but I doubt it really makes a dent. Their focus is Asia (has been since 2 decades now). Us Europeans are just a sleepy backwater of old people with lot of history which makes for nice tax havens and retirement homes.

Even worse. They will be the ones which can comply. They can write legal terms, they can check real government identities and create a significant upload filter strategy.

They are the winners, not the losers here.


right! in a way it creates a couple of jobs but only for those who can program - somebody has to implement these policies into technical reality. looking at GDPR (which I fully support) it has created quite a large niche of specialized lawyers and people are now busy educating themselves about how to isolate PII. No doubt this bill will also produce quite a bit of demand for specialists. But it's hardly innovation.

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.


I keep hearing this but most webapp style applications don't have a lot of PII.

Nobody knows yet what will and will not be GDPR PII. The law handwaved like crazy and they haven't even finished hiring all the officials who will interpret it.

2 decades is somewhat of an overstatement.

The focus of growth has always been on Asia afair (I can only speak for what I witnessed since the 70ies), ... first Japan, India & Tiger countries, later China. Even Brazil and LATAM for a long time had more focus then backward and technophobic Europe. It's not just demography because an old person in Asia will embrace new ideas and tech (my japanese father in law is 90ies and still excited over a new iPhone while my parents already gave up on anything digital in their 50ies - "just too hard they say")

your comment was about FAANG, of which Facebook wasn't founded, Amazon, Netflix, Google were all in their infancy.

Maybe apple,


Alternatively, with a little lobbying and a few tweaks, any 'platform' deemed not to be implementing sufficiently advanced filtering could be subject to ISP-level blocking / filtering.

This one's a double edged sword.


> [...] might [...]

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.


The fact that they only know how to tear down and not to build will make it futile.

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.


How. They are the ones who have the lawyers to protect themselves. It's the small platforms that will suffer, and creating startups in the user-generated content will be too risky.

The strategy is legal, political and economic harmonisation. It does this by passing vague legislation that requires its own court to interpret. Everything else, literally everything, is secondary. And so a nation state is born.

"In a weird way, this might be EU's strategy to finally deal significant damage to Google and Facebook,"

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.


yes, this could be called the "anti-google act" of 2019 ... google is basically the only company it applies to. facebook has never been a major venue for piracy (afaik?) so i don't think it even affects them much.

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.


No, FAANG will not be targeted. Even GDPR which would have been able to piss of facebook was not used to attack them. Only small companies have been attacked because of GDPR violations. Inoffically they have told people they will not attack the big ones because they have enough lawyers so an attack on e.g. facebook will be too time consuming.

This is bullshit. EU was never too shy at attacking big American companies when they crossed the line.

When disagreeing, please reply to the argument instead of calling names. "This is bullshit. 1 + 1 is 2, not 3" can be shortened to "1 + 1 is 2, not 3.

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


I wrote to my MEP and this is the response I got:

Following a number of important amendments being made to the Copyright Directive since July, the proposal was put to a plenary vote in September, which over 60% of MEPs supported. During further negotiations between Parliament, the Council (EU Member States) and the European Commission, any remaining shortcomings can be addressed.

I am in favour of a balanced Copyright Directive that allows for a free and fair internet, and also ensures the fair remuneration of creators, artists, publishers and journalists who create important jobs, growth and innovation in the EU.

With regard to a stronger right for press publishers, Article 11 allows for: • Fair remuneration for journalists and press publishers for the use of their articles. • Financially independent press (independent from platforms). • Quality journalism. • Journalists to get a share of the press publishers' remuneration. Private use of press articles is allowed. Hyperlinking is allowed.

With regard to the value gap, Article 13 allows for: • Platforms to take more responsibility for the content on their websites. • Fair remuneration for European right holders (artists, musicians, authors etc.) from the platforms that use their works. • Platforms to conclude licenses with the right holders. • Right holders and platforms to find a practical solution to bring copyright and liability in a better balance. The scope of Article 13 has been limited to those platforms which infringe the most copyright. Platforms like Spotify, iTunes, Netflix, eBay, Wikipedia, dating-platforms, software developing platforms, blogs, private homepages, dropbox etc. do not fall under Article 13.

Copyright rules need to reflect the new realities and business models of the 21st century, particularly the rise of digital media. Press publishers and other content producers should receive a fair share for the use of their content on the internet. Currently, most generated revenue goes to the platforms and aggregators, such as Google, Facebook, YouTube.

It is of course a priority that the Internet remains a platform where free speech prevails. The rules will only affect platforms that explicitly make profit from copyrighted works. Private individuals can continue to share content on the internet for non-commercial purpose. Platforms such as universities, scientific databases and online encyclopaedias, which are not dealing with copyright content as their primary purpose, will all be exempt from the new rules.

_________________


Thanks, that's actually a reasonable and balance view. Let's just hope that's what actually gets implemented in the law as well...

The GDPR has already resulted in quite a few websites simply refusing to serve the EU. Will this clinch it? Will the EU be cut off form the internet due to over-regulation that no one wants to put themselves at risk over?

I think calling GDPR over-regulation is extremely suspect. The GDPR does a good job in codifying basic privacy principles of what you can do with personal data. Clear communication, consent, control over your own data and data protection principles. Things that should be self-evident but we have been failing with forever, and something that has become an extremely widespread widespread in an online society. The only reason to call it over regulation is if you're spoiled about not being regulated beforehand - but there was a clear need for such a law and codifying reasonable privacy principles. I don't understand why I hear so few Americans about wanting this in their own country.

Article 13 is fundamentally different from the GDPR. The fundamental problem is that I think (and most people hopefully do) user privacy is an ethical good, and I don't believe (much of) copyright law is an ethical good. If you fundamentally believe copyright must be defended vigilantly Article 13 is not an unreasonable consequence at all - I just don't agree with that premise one bit.

Websites that don't want to comply with GDPR, I say good riddance. If you really feel you cannot uphold the basic privacy principles posited, then screw you too. But for Article 13, the laws are only in the interest of big corporations. I don't care about those.


There is a cost to businesses in complying with and implementing regulations, regardless of the size of the business and how good or bad their behaviour has been with respect to the intention of those regulations. You can't deny over-regulation by assuming only the badly-behaving people are burdened by it.

Besides, there is also a cost to me: the never-ending pop-ups and acceptance dialogues, inability to access information in a straightforward manner for those that choose to block, etc.

What is the percentage of users who actively control their privacy as a result of GDPR (and still happily use the website)? What is the percentage of badly -behaving businesses who will be prosecuted?


Every regulation is a trade-off.

> There is a cost to businesses in complying with and implementing regulations, regardless of the size of the business and how good or bad their behaviour has been with respect to the intention of those regulations. You can't deny over-regulation by assuming only the badly-behaving people are burdened by it.

Indeed - the lack of this cost of business was causing (1) reckless and (2) (deeply) unethical behaviour to become rampant [0]. I think it was fair to say it was not acceptable anymore, and I think the GDPR does a good job of formalizing rules of basic common sense about personal data protection. There's really nothing in the GDPR that I can point to that is overbearing, although of course many businesses do implement unnecessarily overbearing UX on top of it.

Processing personal data should be a risk to business, and I think some basic rule of law was warranted for this risk to be clear to business.

I'm not saying there is no cost to regulation. But the cost needs to be proportional to the good it achieves and I think the GDPR does that quite well. Article 13 - in my opinion - clearly will not.

[0]: E.g. in unregulated countries: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=17081684


If a business can't afford basic privacy processes then it deserves to fail.

The law doesn't ask for any popups, blocking is a dumb option that not many take, and for prosecutions we'll have to wait a bit longer before we see.


You can avoid the burden of GDPR entirely if you simply don't collect user data, and you can avoid most of it if you only collect data that you actually need.

> I think calling GDPR over-regulation is extremely suspect.

I don't. I find it an egregious example of over-regulation. I think not recognizing the obviously large scope of such regulation is extremely suspect.

> The GDPR does a good job in codifying basic privacy principles of what you can do with personal data

By what measure do you define "good job"?

> The only reason to call it over regulation is if you're spoiled about not being regulated beforehand

I admit being this kind of spoiled. But it's ridiculous to say that's the only reason. There are measured ways to go about things and to so blatantly say that this is the only reason one might view it as over-regulation (despite real reasons such as size and scope and ineffectiveness of predecessors/enforcement) destroys our ability to have real conversations about the many alternative ways to solve some of the problems we have. Such a black-and-white absolutist view is harmful.

> I don't understand why I hear so few Americans about wanting this in their own country.

Can't speak for all, but for many, it's because they recognize the difference between what would be ideal and what would actually happen. Large anti-company (especially against companies that users prefer to use) laws have a chance to be frowned upon, despite ridiculous promises/optimism/naivete by the hopeful.

> Websites that don't want to comply with GDPR, I say good riddance. If you really feel you cannot uphold the basic privacy principles posited, then screw you too.

These are not how chilling effects work. You don't get to say "well, if they choose not to do business where a law is, they must not be able to uphold that law". There are compliance costs/risks. The amount of assumptions concerning this topic, whether assumptions that the law is good or assumptions that those disagreeing with it are of a certain ilk, need to stop. You only hurt your cause discussing things in this manner.


I'd like to point out that you're responding to me as if you assume I have no to little experience with this law and its consequences for organizations. That's not a reasonable assumption - my post is speaking from organizational experience. You're not talking to some outsider of all of this.

If you have specific problems with GDPR or that it goes too far, I'd like to know what those specific aspects are. In my view, there's some basic rules on how to deal with personal data that the GDPR codifies, and it does that surprisingly (for the EU) reasonably. It starts from simple principles of citizen rights and ethical behaviour and writes a complete rulebook on how to apply them - that's my definition of a good job.

It might be difficult for business to adapt to actually now considering processing personal data a risk. But that by itself does not make GDPR "overregulation" - that just makes it a difficult regulation change to process. I won't shed a tear about business having a difficult time going through that process - I'm incredibly happy that they are forced to consider processing personal data a risk, because it is.

Also note I specifically said "Websites that don't want to comply with GDPR" - not "Companies that are not sure they can comply with GDPR yet". There's a reasonable difference, I agree. But, yes, if you find that your business intrinsically cannot comply with GDPR or you don't want to - it's time to take a good hard look in the mirror.


GDPR caused some non EU media businesses to preemptively block EU users because their primary readership is not in the EU and their primary business model is abusing their users in ways that GDPR restricts.

GDPR did not really change the media landscape in the EU. Business as usual here. Mostly companies went through a brief period where they had to consult lawyers and expensive agencies on how to cover their asses. Mostly good things have started happening after that. Some companies that were doing technically unacceptable things under pre-GDPR legislation have now grudgingly stopped doing those things.


The only thing I've noticed is even more website popups about cookies that make it hard to anything but give the go-ahead to all the cookies, but I'm not sure whether that is a result of GDPR.

That's pre-GDPR (barely), and the original idea was that users should be able to opt out of cookie tracking. But instead most web sites just added that super-annoying (particularly when it covers the whole page) pop-up giving you one option: Accept cookies or else. That was not the intention of the regulation at all. So far I've seen only a single web site that actually gave you the option to not use cookies (yes/no, not just yes).

I’ve seen a lot that give you yes/no options. Some of them tell you that you can’t use the site, sorry, when you click no, but I’ve noticed many let me continue on anyway.

Of course, I’ve seen even more that give you only an accept option... that, or as sibling commenter said yes/wilderness of options.


I ran across one the other day where the options were yes, and yes worded a little bit differently

Yes, it's normally websites run by "good people" (some non-commercial organisation) that let you easily say yes/no. Media websites implement the dark pattern of Yes/[wilderness of options page].

This is pre-GDPR, but it feels like since GDPR there's been a real uptick in this.


I suspect that this is mostly the results of the all or nothing being the easier to implement solution. I've seen several websites that do a offer a more advanced tool where you can opt-out of some cookies (3rd party tracking mostly) but still use the main site.

now you should be free and bold to click the disagree / refuse / no-cookies button and get the experience you expect.

because if the tracking/ad/shit/any cookies are not fundamentally required for the page to show, then denying you the usage of the site is a violation of your privacy (because you can't give selective consent to specific data uses)

sure, a lot of sites throw up the ugly banner, but now you can click fuck cookies, because fuck cookies if you only want to read a fucking HTML page with pictures. they can still make stats about your visit and aggregate them, but tracking cookies are absurd. (they can filter out repeated visits by looking at IP addresses and browser fingerprinting and/or they can ask you nicely to help them get better stats, but now they have to unbundle that from the ad tracking purpose.)


>now you should be free and bold to click the disagree / refuse / no-cookies button and get the experience you expect.

This button doesn't exist in 90% of cases. Websites tend to dump you into a complex, deliberately tedious to edit options UI rather than providing a "No" button.


The operative word is should. The GDPR does not allow that kind of asymmetry.

yeah, then those sites are not compliant at all. just yesterday on a news site there was just an accept button. it was sort of cute, that it was very stark colored floating on the bottom of the page, so it allowed the reader to view the article, but there was no refuse option. (at least for my browsing sample these are becoming a rarity.)

It’s too early to say how GDPR has impacted the landscape as no significant enforcement has happened.

Their are major complaints outstanding against Google, Facebook & the IAB that will define how online publishers can be funded once they are litigated.


I've so far only noticed the blocking on (tabloid) US news sites which when visited with a VPN are full of trackers and overflowing with ads. It didn't feel like a loss to me but would be curious to know if there are services which people feel they really needed/wanted but now can't access w/out VPN?

The Chicago Tribune is not a tabloid, and it blocks EU visitors now, nor are many TV stations that now block people from outside the US. Even a VPN doesn't always solve the problem, unfortunately. It's also very annoying that Google News still shows links from those sites even though you can't actually visit them.

I was actually searching for this very example but incorrectly remembered it as LA Times (but it was the Chicago Tribune). Not sure if this is a loss to people in the EU if the CT would go dark for them. Maybe annoying to expats but not sure if anyone here would cry over them. This might have in fact been the reason why they didn't bother with compliance in the first place (no subscribers/reader from EU)?

Instapaper was a sort of nice utility that blocked EU users after May last year. Fortunately there are alternatives, some of them arguably superior (pinboard?).

To be fair, it's been back for a few months and when they did bring it back, they apologized for how they handled the issue for EU citizens.

Businesses cannot afford it and no, it is not happening. Also, abusing GDPR is one thing, how about all these companies start to pay VAT and taxes on sales originated from EU.

Business currently just state they comply with GDPR, but really they don't.

All these big blanket OK consent buttons we see on landing pages have already been shown in court do not constitute informed and freely given consent. The real impact has het to come, hopefully after some stiff fines are handed.

And you are right: I also wonder about enabling large scale VAT dodging by sites like aliexpress.


I assume you'd be happy for EU businesses to reciprocate and pay US sales taxes on goods & services sold into the US?

Even if you are, I'm not actually sure that would be better for anyone involved. Seems like it would essentially stop or severely diminish online commerce between US/EU as too much hassle.


I would love to be cut off from Facebook. Please do it now.

Too bad, gdpr actually makes facebook stronger..

Not unless their lawyers somehow keep the regulation from being enforced for them indefinitely.

The regulation itself forbids their main income source


no it doesn't. facebook was always pretty good at asking for permission. it showed you that so and so app will have access to this and that. and people blindly clicked it, because they wanted the maffia wars, the mob wars, the farmville, the latest zinga shitclick time waster to one up their friends in imaginary internet point games. (I tried them too, then luckily the fad wore off.)

FB has to show who they sell data to, that's the new part basically. They will probably show a long list of random companies. It'll look a bit scary, people will get accustomed to it. (FB will find a dark pattern that minimizes the attrition due to any permission/consent step in their money machine.)


But that is the thing. The regulation is still in effect, even after they gave the permission.

The identifiable information still has to be encrypted. They still need to specify exactly where the information will go and why. And if a new company wants to access the data or even wants to use the provided Information for something new, Facebook has to ask permission again. Once again telling the user why that company needs permission and why as well.

It's doubtful that the current blanket prompt is enough. But it remains to be seen wherever the law will be enforced and it's of course possible,that nothing will change and regulator's never act on the law


How so?

What about other people that like the service? Why don't you stop using it yourself and instead try to forcibly impose your personal ideals on others?

The problem with Facebook is that they track everyone, FB users or not. Most likely breaking GDPR for basically every European who uses the internet.

Good talk from a few weeks ago: https://media.ccc.de/v/35c3-9941-how_facebook_tracks_you_on_...

(that's just android, but they do just as much web tracking through their pixel for example).


Agreed, it's a way over the top. However, I would like the EU, or the US, to tell Facebook to get their data collection and reselling under control. The GDPR should have taken care of that issue, but until someone drag Facebook to count over a GDPR violation and wins, nothing is going to change.

Because those pages sucked and didn't want to protect it's users privacy.

It's like saying that criminal laws prevented people from getting happily scammed.


But it's in a website's favor to serve as many consumers as possible, won't any group that isn't willing to conform to EU standards be out competed by those that do?

Nope

If a few major sites like Wikipedia, YouTube and Facebook decide to not service EU any longer, I think it won't take long before that regulation is rolled back.

No idea if such a thing would happen though.


This has the potential of being a blessing in the disguise since these barriers will not hold for decentralized alternatives where there is no obvious platform operator to hold responsible.

Don't they already have that covered through existing policy, though? bittorrent is highly policed

only the centralized public trackers are "affected". and the fact that they are still around and kicking, and distributed decentralized anonymous reputation-market systems are pretty empty shows that that policing is rather weak (otherwise people would move toward the "policing resistant" networks)

A ray of light in the gloom... I do hope so.

And as sad as the damage of current internet culture will be, there are many potential unintended consequences that may be - at least - interesting.


Bloody hell that's rather terrifying. After GDPR I was thinking Europe would be the bastion of the internet, now it looks like it's time to decentralise the internet completely. Which is going to surely have it's own issues I'm sure.

its own issues

Yeah phone autocorrect.

Therein lies the problem of regulating something like the internet. It’s impossible for regulating bodies to find the perfect balance and then just stop.

I'm worried about influencing outcomes in the EU due to language barriers, especially on boring and "unsexy" issues like Internet regulation. It'd be important for the EU to be able to vote for representatives regardless of your primary jurisdiction.

Even if I manage to convince most of the representatives from my region, they will be outvoted by the French who had a big hand in passing the proposal forward the last time... It's like they reside in a completely different universe, with no hope of meaningful communication.

Edit: adding a link to this false-positive emulator script[0] as an example of how stupid the proposal is.

[0]: https://twitter.com/AlecMuffett/status/1015594170424193024


I find that unlikely to believe. Yes, the de-facto working languages in Bruxelles are English and French, but chances are everyone knows both (or even English better). If you send material to MEPs of any country, they will be able to read it if they want - there are dedicated translation services, as you might imagine in an org working with dozens of different ethnicities.

Language acts simply as a constituency signal (“not in my language? Not a voter of mine...”). That is expected and even legitimate - why should a MEP listen to other voices over the ones of people they actually represent? If you really want to influence a MEP, you would get better chances by finding allies in his constituency. This is not really different than with national parliaments.

In terms of this or that national block outvoting a position, it is less frequent than one would expect, and depends largely on how European parties organise. Most parties have some sort of nominated board that agrees a line for the entire group, regardless of national boundaries. Some countries might have a larger influence on the group because of their electoral dynamics (German MEPs for the Greens, for example, will outnumber Italian ones to ridiculous degrees; and some parties are single-country, typically the isolationist ones), but that’s usually not the case in major parties (PSE and PPE).


Correct - this proposal is coming from the EPP, the largest party in the EU parliament. Predictably, most of their MEPs will just blindly vote for it along party lines. Language barriers are crucial in terms of their constituency universe (plus the older demographic skew). Their voters don't read Reddit, Twitter or anything in English and this issue is nowhere near their radars.

> Their voters don't read Reddit, Twitter or anything in English

That's a bit patronizing, and a view of internet users that belongs to the '90s. These voters might (for example) like memes and forums very much, but not value them enough to shift political alliances over a proposal like this. Not everyone lives 10 hours a day on the internet.


Language barriers are overplayed. If they were so important then EU institutions would simply not work...

Now, I don't know where the majority stands on this issue but being outvoted by the majority is called democracy. The French, even assuming French representatives in the EU are all on the same side, cannot force EU legislation. Any legislation has majority support (including at member states' governments level).


This is the reason that all proposals to the EU are translated to the native language of every nation. As of writing this the documents are available in 24 languages.

> adding a link to this false-positive emulator script[0] as an example of how stupid the proposal is.

This is a very interesting twitter thread. The script, and the posted screenshots, repeatedly demonstrate the solution to a single very simple math problem for particular values of input variables. It seems that Alec Muffett is relying on the idea that he wrote a script -- a script which was easy to write and solves a very easy problem -- to provide more credibility than the laws of probability have in their own right, which is -- to me -- 100% backwards. If your script disagrees with the math, particularly at this level, the odds are overwhelming that your script has a bug, not that the math was wrong.


> Edit: adding a link to this false-positive emulator script[0] as an example of how stupid the proposal is.

TLDR: In an optimistic estimate, to stop 300 illegitimate copyright infringing posting, we would have to block 150.000 non-infringing posts.

Whoever suggests this as a policy, must have received serious payoffs to close their eyes for the overwhelmingly negative effects this law will have.


This is why we need Esperanto.

We already have a common language that's widely known across Europe (English), it just doesn't have the reach that the native language does.

Some countries are also really self centered in terms of news, etc. Here in Spain, for example, most national news deal mostly with corruption scandals, political issues in Catalonia, sports, and little else. Geopolitical and/or European issues are given surprisingly little time considering we're the fifth largest economy in the union (about to be the fourth after/if the UK leaves).


Feels like the same in the UK media, except s/Catalonia/Brexit/g.

It's quite different. The UK hasn't sent police to stop the Scottish referendum and beat up voters and the EU has not sought the extradition of Nigel Farage.

I believe the poster was meaning that the UK press is insular and doesn't report on wider European issues like the Spanish press and not commenting on Catalonia or making a comparison with Scotland.

Or English as the officially recognised global language

¯\_(ツ)_/¯


With Britain leaving the EU there is sadly a lot less reason for English to be the official language.

Now if Britain is leaving, English could be considered as a neutral language so no country has an advantage.

It is also still the only language that is taught as a foreign language in close to all primary and secondary schools in the Union. It's the most spoken language in the Union. It's relatively easy to learn as a foreign language. It's also the de facto language of international trade, of science, of culture and of international diplomacy (sorry France).


> Now if Britain is leaving, English could be considered as a neutral language so no country has an advantage.

There’s still the Irish.


Surely the case for English as a working language is now stronger. Previously it could have been seen as unfair to use one member state's language over another...

Ireland is still in.

Which one can replace it? Either French or German will face obstacles.

Or, on the contrary, there is less reason against it (no more perceived advantage or "cultural capitulation" to the Brits)

Why not Mandarin?

Because English is one of the simplest languages to learn.

A better question is why not Spanish?


Please stop with this fiction. I bet you never had to learn English as a second language. It's very hard.

- Because Mandarin is the official language only of China (and Taiwan)?

- Because English already has a great momentum (with the number of speakers of English as a second language, pop culture and the Internet)?


> Legal content should not be blocked.

I don't think this will happen, but if this is actually made into a liability then this would create a rather interesting situation where a platform could be sued for blocking fair use content and miss-identified content.


I think the net result would probably be a rapid increase of the "451 Not Available For Legal Reasons" errors which have appeared post-GDPR.

That and a load of innovative start-ups simply setting up overseas instead of inside Europe, and perhaps major sites simply preventing any kind of contribution from European users.

After all, there's no A13 clause which says that if your US site allows uploads, your European one also has to?


That legal content part seems a little like damned if you and damned it you don't.

OK. So I'd like to help make some noise surrounding this issue. Who should I email for best impact?

Your MEPs, politely and in your own words.

I've already tried e-mailing the MEPs, it doesn't work. If you do get a response it goes in the lines of sorry mate, but you're wrong, here's why blah blah; our party consensus is that we're doing the right thing by voting for this controversial measure. Good luck with that.

That doesn't mean that contacting MEPs "doesn't work", you can't expect them to change their opinion immediately based on receiving one email from one of their constituents.

Use handwritten snail mail; generally the less effort a communication medium takes the less the politicians pay attention. Though with how many of them are on board you may want to start researching up on their opponents for the next election

A friendly reminder that almost no-one commenting in this thread has read the full articles and recitals.

So, it could be worse...

EDIT: Intending to provide a more useful response now, here are links from the post above to the articles[1] and recitals[2] of the current negotiations. I'm seeing relevant platform liability language in the row labeled 239. While marked for continued discussion, the proposed language is concerning to me:

    "Licensing agreements which are concluded by online content sharing service providers
    with right holders for the acts of communication referred to in paragraph 1..., 
    shall cover the liability for works uploaded by the users of such online content sharing services 
    in line with the terms and conditions set out in the licensing agreement, 
    provided that such users do not act for commercial purposes."
[1] https://juliareda.eu/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Copyright-Di... [2] https://juliareda.eu/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Copyright-Di...

I'd love to see a "cliff's notes" summary of what A13 means as it is right now. Something like the "Doorstep EU" app does for Brexit-related news -- an actual, thought-out summary which links to authoritative reference material.

Isn't that what the linked-to article is?

TBH it's not clear what it entails. Plus i m not sure which one is the latest directive.

More importantly i have never, ever heard of any local IT unions or societies being involved in the process of legislating these laws (same thing for GDPR). I don't believe this law will change things radically in europe, although i m a little worried with all this predatory lawmaking against US companies. The main issue remains that europe produces very little online (No european-superheroes memes? big whoop)


> IT unions

I think I'd have a bigger chance of meeting a unicorn than a member of a "IT union".


me too, i mean all kinds of IT communities

Hhmm who could we read it on time when it was created behind closed doors?

It's unclear to me what "internet platforms that organise and promote large amounts of ... works uploaded by their users" really means. It presumably applies to Facebook. It presumably doesn't apply to e-mail. But if I had a social networking service that had no advertising and was only accessible to its paying users, would the law apply to it? What if postings were encrypted and could only be read by users that had requested access to them? Would the company running the service be expected to either backdoor the encryption or create bogus accounts and request access from those bogus accounts in order to monitor postings that might contain infringing content?

> Licenses that platforms take out cover uploads by their users, as long as they act non-commercially or “don’t generate significant revenues”

Am I reading correctly that when you have a forum (e.g. Discourse) which is non-commercial i.e. for an open community, that any users uploading stuff or quoting article sections are exempt from this regulation (even though the forum is hosted on Discourse servers on a paid plan)?


This might be a good thing actually.

If huge content distribution platforms like YouTube and Facebook are not viable anymore, it might put a renewed wind in the sails of self-hosting systems. Getting the Internet back to it's distributed nature would make it more resilient.


youtube does not rely on infringing content anymore. at least, 100% of the channels i follow are by makers who try to make fair use of copyrighted stuff or using public domain of historic stuff .

> the sails of self-hosting systems

Self-hosted content is pointless if there are no watercoolers to chat about it.


So usenet is dead, right? 90%, usenet ISPs are a download server pretenting to be a mail server so they can claim safe harbour. If they are responsible for auditing their content, presumably this isn't viable anymore...

I am so tired of this abuse ... finally there is light

How will this help? The usenet providers will be responsible for the uploads their own customers do -- not for the content posted elsewhere on Usenet.

If in a federated platform the ISP is not responsible for content they agregate, that's a big loophole. It would really encourage P2P approaches.

I am curious about other interpretations of the impact this law will have. Would it encourage the development of more peer-to-peer sharing networks, which lack a central space to upload?

I wish we had the kind of concerted effort that the copyright lobby is able to launch, but focused on issues that reduce the net benefit of these platform more than copyright infringement: hate speech or intentional misinformation.


The popularity of modern streaming services combined with the shortage of IP addresses and subsequent spread of carrier-grade NAT will make it a bit difficult for regular P2P networks to make a come-back. I can, however, imagine this will have result in a small boost for self-hosted content.

I can imagine someone writing a TOR-based eMule client or something along those lines but it won't be anywhere near as common as it was back in the days; ease of use has always been an important factor and today we actually do have commercial alternatives in place this time.

As I see it, the main impact will be for social networks and other sites that allow user uploads. There's an actual chance the people behind the law simply don't understand that what they're asking isn't possible, and that many politicians think we just need to solve this with blockchains and machine learning (because that's apparently how to fix everything nowadays). In the real world, however, I really see no way to comply with that law without mass-monitoring and very far-reaching automatic censorship of uploaded content.


It'll encourage growth of telegram/whatsapp groups where stuff is forwarded around and reaches a large audience, but without a crawlable URL.

Social networks.


Like in the old Direct Connect days.

Shifting legal risks from you to your users doesn't seem like a good strategy for growing your product.

Maybe that is the point. We need services not products, and maybe limiting the viability of traditional centralised (risk, data, prestation) products could allow a new category of distributed (risk, data,...) services to fill in the need.

Maybe not encourage, but it will increase the incentives for those to pursue other options if complying will get increasingly more expensive. Though I doubt traditional corporations will be able to take advantage of it since they will be tied by the rules to continue their advantage in the status quo.

I like this new law. My rights are abused every hour and corporations hide behind the safe harbour. It is a really good thing. Keep up EU

Can you be more specific? Which rights?

I have a software product. People resell it on marketplaces. They make €30~50,000 per year from doing this. When I contact the marketplaces they hide behind safe harbour - yes, they suspend the user account but the same user will register the next day under a different name and keep the same practice. The responsibility of the content published should be shifted from the author to the platform so abuse like this is not repeated.

> The responsibility of the content published should be shifted from the author to the platform

How is the platform going to know what's legally published and what isn't? In some cases I suppose you can work with an industry, like YouTube's Content ID for music, however even with Google's resources Content ID still has severe glitches[1] (should they be legally responsible for false positives too?). Otherwise what, hire an army of mechanical turks to manually review every single thing that's uploaded?

At best I think under this kind of system you're going to get a stagnant landscape where only corporate giants with deep pockets and/or industry connections can create new innovative products. There's going to be no more upstart Instagrams, Snapchats, Soundclouds, whatever if the company can get sued into oblivion if some rando takes a pic or uploads a snippet of copyrighted material.

[1]: https://twitter.com/SmellyOctopus/status/1082771468377821185


> I have a software product. People resell it on marketplaces.

Can you elaborate on why this is occurring in an illegal fashion? UsedSoft v Oracle [1] and Aleksandrs Ranks and Jurijs Vasiļevičs [2] seem to broadly suggest that reselling used software is legal.

[1] http://curia.europa.eu/juris/document/document.jsf?docid=124...

[2] http://curia.europa.eu/juris/document/document.jsf?docid=184...


This wil change nothing that is not already in effect for most sites. Try to upload a movie to Youtube, it will be removed. But only when the owner/author complains or some automatic filter is triggered.

There is also too much content to check and enforce it all.


YouTube has stated that if this passes, "EU residents are at risk of being cut off from videos that, in just the last month, they viewed more than 90bn times" – i.e. despite all the overblocking and mistakes, still too much slips through ContentID for them to take the risk of direct liability. https://youtube-creators.googleblog.com/2018/11/i-support-go...

I hope this happens and everyone will wake up, complain and the directive will be changed.

In all likelihood, EU users will just end up using VPN-type services to bypass the blocks... rather than talking to their MEPs.

(I don't blame them to be fair, I've gone down the MEP route - they replied with a form letter to the effect of "this is party policy and I'll support it because it's for your own good, and I'm not discussing it further")


Not most sites. In fact, youtube is somewhat the exception; they developed censoring capabilities only because their size made them too big of a target to dodge legal pressure.

There are bazillions of other sites who don’t (and often can’t) police anything of what they host unless they are threatened with litigation.


yeah, youtube is already there, but with the amount of copyright system abuse there are, I personally dont want others to become like youtube in regards to copyright/legality.

I'm an EU citizen.

Honest question here: What can I do to influence this decision?


> I'm an EU citizen. Honest question here: What can I do to influence this decision?

Mmm...maybe you could write to your local/nearest European Parliament Representative...I think they call them MEPs...


What strikes me as odd is that most of these efforts are driven by the EU. Are other unions and nations not seeing the need for these things? It reminded me of GDPR.

What if an internet platform requires encryption of every upload? And other internet platform stores keys for such uploads, and decryption happens on user's computer.

This will either be really good by forcing people to run their own sites (the web is a giant social network naturally) or will kill the meme culture.

I hope my country leaves the European union, soon.

> I hope my country leaves the European union, soon.

LOL...why though? By the way...which country is that?


It won't happen any time soon I'm afraid. I want to leave the eu because I don't believe in big centralized countries making decisions for hundreds of millions of people. I like decentralization.

Just look on all the big countries of the world, they all kind of suck. There is simply no way for ordinary citizens to have any effect on EU because of it's size alone. Almost all my countries MEPs voted no to Article 13 but it still got passed.

I don't want Germany and France to control Sweden (which is the country I'm from).


That's why more and more people feel resentment towards their states and the EU. This is a blatant corruption and this is only going to get worse. There should be an investigation of all the people involved, money traced even for distant family members and acquaintances. If any shady behaviour is discovered then the justice should be dispensed. Any politician that abuses his position to serve company interest in exchange for money should receive a capital punishment as a deterrent

Is AWS's S3 (or other object store providers) on the hook for upload filtering? Maybe just their EU locations?

Well, you have to sign up with a credit card for AWS so I would think they would just pass on the lawsuits straight to you as they know who you are.

what if they post from outside of the EU, or the platform is not in the EU? that would mean these laws don't apply? seems a bit useless law considering what the internet is... besides that it's prone to trolls getting companies fined. stupid idea for on the internet if you ask me.

Hmmm This might make the dark net more mainstream

How will this be different from SOPA?

It isn't different from SOPA (or from ACTA)

Small companies won't have resources to create their own content filters.

Guess who is going to sell content-filter-as-a-service?


From the article:

> Platforms run by startups (small and micro-sized businesses) are exempted from the law.


From the article:

> This was one of the European Parliament’s main improvements to the text. Unfortunately, it is now in danger of being dropped in negotiations.


"Facebook Content Filter - protect your site from A13, only $1 per upload..."

€100 extra if you also wish for Google ContentID protection

Ah yes, a private police force for the copyright holders. What on earth is wrong with just letting them sue?

The EU is going to regulate themeselves to the dark ages by simply creating an environment that is too antagonistic and costly to capitalism compared to other parts of the world. The regulations around capital raising for a fund in the EU is aweful. You’re better off being based in the US and simply invest in EU startups.

seems fair, if you're going to make your money from user created content

As much as I like GDPR, I have no idea why would this law be any good. Perhaps I'm not seeing something here - can anyone explain how this law is good for society?


Poor Europeans. The European's Great Firewall.

Well there goes my startup idea I was working on and off last two years.

Your startup idea was to host large amounts of copyrighted material for profit, without checking who had the rights to distribute that material?

In some parts of the EU that's already illegal. Not just a civil tort for which you can be sued, but an actual criminal offence for which you can be prosecuted.

Which would you prefer?


> Your startup idea was to host large amounts of copyrighted material for profit, without checking who had the rights to distribute that material?

of course not don't be silly.

but so far liability was on the uploader, when the police comes knocking you gave out user data and that was it. see, for example, the jsfiddle constant issue with illegal content: https://remysharp.com/2015/09/18/jsbin-toxic-part-5

people miss here that any user generated content could be part of a copyright. even text if they are lyrics. there's NO user platform that's safe.


Can you post a link to the bits of article 13 (from the EU source) that you think make your idea unworkable?

Julia is running her own upload filter in advance of the legislation she is fighting. My comment does not appear on her site.



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