When MEP Julia Reda conducted a wide-ranging and open consultation on updating EU copyright, she came up with some great, sensible reforms: making it legal to take pictures of buildings, making it legal to link to newspapers, creating a Europe-wide set of fair dealing exceptions to copyright, capping copyright terms at life-plus-50 years, and making sure that the rights you get to analog media (like the right to give your books and music to your kids when you die) carries over to digital media.
Naturally, the copyright lobbyists and their friends in the Europarl and Commission hated these ideas and have been running a dirty trick campaign ever since to sabotage them, and make copyright in Europe into a way for giant corporations to extract rent from the public and creators.
Now there's only nine days until a key vote that will determine which direction Europe goes. On the one hand there's a proposal to force online spaces to continuously surveil all user-posted material and censor anything an algorithm thinks might infringe copyright and to allow companies to decide who gets to link to their websites; on the other hand, well, there's the sensible stuff.
The advocates of copyright maximalism are running the dirtiest of dirty-trick campaigns to get their way, armtwisting Parliamentarians behind the scenes.
Europeans can call their MEPs for free and tell them to reject the dirty tricks and corporatisation!
Today it was revealed that MEP Pascal Arimont from the European People's Party (EPP) is trying to sabotage the Parliamentary process, going behind the negotiators of the political groups and pushing a text that would make the Commission's original bad proposal look tame in comparison. This is a tactic he recently already successfully applied to prevent the committee from adopting a progressive position on overcoming geoblocking. If he succeeds again, the result would once more do the opposite of what the Committee is tasked to do: Protecting European consumers.
… In this committee, Social Democrat MEP Catherine Stihler was appointed to take everyone's proposed changes and develop a compromise that a majority of MEPs can stand behind. To do this, she is regularly meeting with representatives of all the other political groups (including myself, for the Greens/EFA group).