EU apparatchiks are working on an ancillary copyright law that will threaten websites like the Drudge Report and Infowars.com.
“The European Commission is preparing a frontal attack on the hyperlink, the basic building block of the Internet as we know it. This is based on an absurd idea that just won’t die: Making search engines and news portals pay media companies for promoting their freely accessible articles,” writes Julia Reda, a German activist from the Pirate Party and a member of the European Parliament.
Reda cites a draft communication on copyright reform leaked last week.
The document proposes “putting the simple act of linking to content under copyright protection. This idea flies in the face of both existing interpretation and spirit of the law as well as common sense. Each weblink would become a legal landmine and would allow press publishers to hold every single actor on the Internet liable,” Reda explains.
She believes the EU will introduce ancillary copyright and internet restrictions under the guise of “clearing up” questions left unanswered by the Svensson case.
In the Svensson case, the European Court of Justice determined that simply linking to content is not infringement.
“Bringing in an EU-wide Google tax in a misguided attempt to prop up publishers that still haven’t figured out how to work with, rather than against, the Internet, would be disastrous,” writes Glyn Moody for Techdirt.
On October 6 Matt Drudge told the Alex Jones Show that the very foundation of the free Internet is under severe threat from copyright laws that could ban independent media outlets.
“I had a Supreme Court Justice tell me it’s over for me,” said Drudge. “They’ve got the votes now to enforce copyright law, you’re out of there. They’re going to make it so you can’t even use headlines.”