Google is funding a campaign group that spans lawmakers and newspapers

Article 13 and Article 11 of the Copyright Directive have been approved by Brussels officials in an attempt to change the copyright law online.

MEPs have approved a series of changes to the EU's Copyright Directive, the first major revision of European copyright legislation since 2001.

Although most changes present a welcome update to aging legislation, Article 11 and Article 13 in the document have provoked outrage in some corners of the Internet.

A letter written by 70 leading Internet figures, including Sir Tim Berners-Lee, said the risks outweighed the benefits in terms of the new EU law.

"We support the consideration of measures that improve the ability of creators to receive fair remuneration for the use of their works online," reads the open letter.

"But we can not support Article 13, which would force Internet platforms to integrate an automated infrastructure for monitoring and censorship in their networks."

Article 13 and Article 11 of the Copyright Directive have been approved by Brussels officials in an attempt to change the copyright law online.

Article 13 and Article 11 of the Copyright Directive have been approved by Brussels officials in an attempt to change the copyright law online.

What is in Article 13?

Article 13 of the revised EU Copyright Directive could affect music memes and remixes of music shared online.

This part of the legislation imposes on the websites the responsibility of police surveillance for copyright infringement.

Until now, online companies have not been subject to copyright sanctions when a user on their platform raised something that infringes copyrights.

However, that will change with Article 13.

As a result, Facebook could be liable when one of its 2.19 billion monthly active users shares a copyrighted image without the correct permission of the rights holders.

But although Facebook has the funds to build a system that automatically scans the content before it is shared to detect infractions, many smaller sites do not.

Memes often use static images of popular television programs or movies, which are protected by copyright and would be marked by these systems.

Cory Doctorow, special advisor to the Electronic Freedom Foundation, says that article 13 will cause "problems so big that they threaten to destroy the Internet".

It is not clear exactly what precautions should be taken by websites to protect against copyright infringement by their users.

Article 13 is quite vague, suggesting that sites use "appropriate" measures and employ "effective content recognition technologies" to verify content.

According to critics, the most important problem with Article 13 is the fact that it does not make exceptions for legitimate use, which previously allowed people to remix and mix copyrighted songs, or use short video clips from movies in the form of commentary. or parody.

What is in Article 11?

Article 11 of the Copyright Directive has been nicknamed & # 39; fragment tax & # 39 ;.

Its goal is to limit the power that technological giants like Google and Facebook have over publishers, whose work is protected by copyright law.

Online platforms will have to pay a license to link news publishers when they quote parts of text from these outlets.

This will support publishers and drive traffic away from publishers.

But while Silicon Valley companies like Google and Facebook will undoubtedly be able to afford a license, smaller companies may not.

The changes could ban small news aggregators, which incorporate articles from a variety of online sources.

Axel Voss, European Parliament rapporteur for the Copyright Directive, who spearheaded the changes, defended article 11, saying: "If the press depends on search engines, powerful companies, then we simply do not have a press anymore independent. & # 39;

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