In just six days, an EU committee will vote on the most drastic, foolish, harmful internet regulations in the history of the EU: a mass censorship and surveillance system that will fail to defend copyright (its stated purpose), while snuffing out EU-based online services and giving a permanent advantage to their US-based Big Tech rivals.
On Techdirt, Mike Masnick addresses the Europeans who fought ACTA, explaining how Articles 11 (the link tax, which will only let you link to news articles on platforms that have paid for permission, and only to the news sources that have granted it) and 13 (the copyright filters, which will spy on every word, picture, video, sound, and line of code you post, check it against an unaccountable blacklist of copyrighted works, and either block or permit it) are much worse than the worst parts of ACTA, and provides advice on Europeans to contact their MEPs ahead of the key vote.
On Motherboard, Karl Bode talks about how no one seems to want this: the link taxes were tried before in Spain and Germany, and failed catastrophically; the filters pose an existential risk to any service that lets the public talk to each other.
On New World Notes, Wagner James Au explores the implications for VR, MMOs, and virtual worlds: European success stories like Minecraft have created global small businesses that host local servers, but how can a small Minecraft hosting business in the EU possibly determine if its users are designing skins or other creations that violate someone's copyright?
If you're a European, Save Your Internet is the fastest, easiest way to get in touch with your MEP. You have SIX DAYS: act now!
My latest Locus Magazine column is DRM Broke Its Promise, which recalls the days when digital rights management was pitched to us as a way to enable exciting new markets where we'd all save big by only buying the rights we needed (like the low-cost right to read a book for an hour-long plane ride), […]
For decades, architectural critic and photographer John Margolies obsessively documented roadside attractions: vernacular architecture, weird sculpture, odd businesses and amusements. By his death in 2016, his collection consisted of more than 11,000 slides (he published books of his favorites, with annotations).
After the EU Copyright Directive passed with a slim majority that only carried because some MEPs got confused and pressed the wrong button, the government of Poland filed a legal challenge with the European Court of Justice, arguing that the Directive -- and its rule requiring that all online discourse be filtered by black-box algorithms […]
When it comes to data analytics or deep learning, there’s one language behind the apps and algorithms that power the biggest companies of today: Python. The best part about this tool is that as versatile as it is, it’s actually fairly easy to learn. But mastery? For that, you need more than just a beginners’ […]
Your smartphone’s GPS is a modern necessity for some trips, but how do you use it safely? It’s been a problem ever since phones went mobile. A certain phone mount even shelled out the money for a commercial during the Big Game, so clearly there’s a market for the solution. Turns out there are a […]
There’s reading for pleasure, and then there’s reading for fuel; absorbing the great ideas in nonfiction books so you can apply them in your own life. In today’s hectic pace, it can be difficult to find the time to do that reading – especially for the entrepreneurs and professionals who can benefit the most from […]