Tomorrow, July 5, the European Parliament will vote on whether to conduct a debate and review of the new copyright directive that was approved by the legislative committee last month.
The new directive has two controversial (and catastrophic) elements: Article 11 bans linking to news-sites without a paid license (but does not define "link" or "news," leaving it up to 28 member-states to create a patchwork of rules); and Article 13 requires copyright filters that surveil everything posted to the internet and censors anything that partially matches a database of known copyrighted works. These filters have to be designed to allow rightsholders to claim millions of works at a time (like all the photos in Getty Images or all the Disney movies, ever), but have no penalties for people who falsely claim copyright in order to censor works.
This is obviously incredibly bad for Wikipedia. Article 13 tries to exempt "nonprofit online encyclopedias" but only manages to capture a small fraction of what Wikipedia does -- for example, it would still require copyright filtering for the massive Wikipedia Commons project, which collects and hosts open-licensed materials.
Article 11 is even worse for Wikipedia, which is absolutely reliant on being able to cite news stories as the factual basis for its articles.
In the runup to the vote, the Italian, Spanish, Estonian, Latvian, Polish, French and Portuguese versions of Wikipedia have blacked out and replaced their pages with notes describing the directives and asking Wikipedia users to write to their MEPs (here's a tool you can use) to ask them to vote for a full debate on Articles 11 and 13. Other Wikipedia projects are running banners asking their readers to do the same.
This is an important moment in this fight. MEPs need to hear from their constituents on this: with EU elections coming up, they're more likely to be responsive than at any other time. The daily activities and cultural lives of hundreds of millions of Europeans are on the line here.
Wikipedia Italy Blocks All Articles in Protest of EU's Ruinous Copyright Proposals [Rhett Jones/Gizmodo]
Wikipedia down in several countries in EU law protest [Physorg]
Investigative tech journalist Joseph Menn's (previously) next book is a history of the Cult of the Dead Cow (previously) the legendary hacker/prankster group that is considered to be "America's oldest hacking group."
Back in 2016, the Dr Seuss estate won a preliminary court action against "Oh, The Places You'll Boldly Go!" a crowdfunded parody of Dr Seuss's "Oh the Places You'll Go!" and Star Trek, written by veteran Star Trek creator David "Tribble" Gerrold and illustrated by the comics giant Ty Templeton.
Yesterday, I wrote about how MEP Julia Reda resolved the mystery of how the European Parliament came to produce a batshit smear-campaign video promoting the new Copyright Directive and smearing the opposition to the Directive (including signatories to the largest petition in human history): it turned out that the video had been produced by AFP, […]
Seems like drones are doing a lot of jobs these days, from reconnaissance to delivery. Now, we can add “keeping the Death Star safe” to that list. Whether you’re a drone enthusiast or a Star Wars fan, these Star Wars Propel Drones are undeniably the coolest toy around. Yes, that’s a fully functional drone replica […]
It’s spring clearance time for the Boing Boing Store, when some of the best deals from the holidays return even cheaper than before. From top-rated apps to educational software to the cutest record player of all time, they’re all back with a little extra incentive. Shop your heart out before tax season wraps up! Use […]
Big companies want automation on a big scale. Doing that means diving into the tricky world of machine learning and data science. And no matter what platform you’ll be implementing it on, you can learn how with the Machine Learning & Data Science Certification Training Bundle. In 48 hours and through eight courses, this bundle […]