On 20 June, the European Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee (JURI) approved a version of Article 13 of the draft Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market that is deeply harmful to the fundamental rights of freedom of speech and freedom of information.
This is one of those laws that actually does change your day-to-day life. The consequences of Article 13 would be immense and obvious.
Join our campaign and demand a copyright law that safeguards your online free speech!
If you make home videos or memes, if you record yourself playing video games, if you have a gift for karaoke that you want to share with the world – in all of these examples and so many more, you'll notice Article 13.
That's because all of these materials could be censored by bots and blocked from being uploaded, severely restricting your ability to share – and see – so many things on the internet. Do you want to understand what is at stake? Watch this video.
But it's not too late to stop Article 13. Some of the members of the European Parliament want to side with big copyright holders and spare themselves from putting in the effort to get it right and come up with a bill that protects both copyright holders and everyone's free speech.
They are not mutually exclusive – we can protect both copyright and free speech at the same time.
By including these six safeguards into Article 13, members of the European Parliament could successfully protect the interests of everyone.
Now the battle heads to the plenary, where all MEPs will have a say on Article 13. There are members who fight for a better and more balanced regulation.
Our task is to convince those who are hesitating. We have to convince them that our free speech is non-negotiable.
Join our campaign now and send our model email to all members of the European Parliament with a single click.
Add your voice to 40,000 others who demand a law that protects everyone's interests.
Here is the email you can send to EU representatives with just a single click →
If the new EU copyright proposal is passed, we will be living in a new era of censorship. YouTube, Facebook and other file-sharing platforms would be forced to implement new algorithms to check whether the content you upload has any copyrighted elements. Bots would judge what you can share – and what can be shared with you. They would filter out and ban anything that might cause a problem. Any problem. It’s about our freedom to speak. It’s about censorship.
Copyright protection is important for everyone. But with this proposal, the EU has developed the wrong tool for the job. They want online companies like YouTube and Facebook to check everything that ordinary people put on the internet and filter out any upload that contains copyrighted material.
How will these companies achieve this? With bots, of course. And because companies would rather be overly cautious than risk a fine, these bots will be so strict that we won’t be able to upload anything that has even the slightest chance of infringing copyright. That video of your friends having at a music festival that you wanted to post to Facebook? Banned because there’s copyrighted music in the background. That hilarious meme you wanted to tweet? Banned because it uses an image from a film.
We can’t rely on bots to draw the line between what’s free speech and what’s genuinely pirated material. And it’s not only your free speech at stake here. Your right to a private life is also under threat, because the only way these companies can filter your uploads is by constantly monitoring you.
It’s not too late to stop this proposal, but your support is crucial. Please take a second to send this email to members of the European Parliament and ask them to vote against this proposal.
Read what has happened so far
Want to learn more about what makes the draft copyright law so bad? Here are some articles
Our allies in this battle
Frënn vun der Ënn:
Index on Censorship:
Italian Coalition for Civil Liberties and Rights:
Rights International Spain:
Estonian Human Rights Centre:
Polish Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights:
Hungarian Civil Liberties Union:
The League of Human Rights (LIGA):
Human Rights Monitoring Institute:
The Association for the Defense of Human Rights in Romania – the Helsinki Committee:
D3 - Defesa dos Direitos Digitais:
Bits of Freedom:
JUMEN e.V. - Legal Human Rights Work in Germany
Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT)
Copyright for Creativity C4C
Access Info Europe