European Copyright Reform: write to your MEP today!

Here at copyrightliteracy.org we usually focus on news about copyright education rather than the political process. However, this Wednesday there will be an extremely important vote in a plenary session of the European Parliament which will have a significant impact on EU copyright law. We therefore decided that it would be useful to write a post summarising the key issues as we see them, and urging anybody within the EU (and for the time being that still means us in the UK) to get in touch with their MEPs before the end of Tuesday 11 September if they want to influence the outcome.

We understand that copyright law can sometimes be confusing. Similarly the political process of making new laws is not always easy to keep track of. However, there are some key issues at stake here that are very important to us and that we think will have a big impact on the way that copyright is experienced by those who follow our blog:

  • Article 3 – provisions for text and data mining – a new pan-European exception to allow the analysis of copyright protected datasets
  • Article 4 – use of works in cross border and digital teaching activities
  • Article 6 – proposals for appealing against use of technical protection measures with implications for full use of exceptions
  • Article 11 – a new press publishers’ right which would mean licences would be required to aggregate news links
  • Article 13 – mandatory filtering technologies for online platforms which would mean all online services with user uploaded content would need to use technologies like YouTube’s Content ID
We would encourage anyone who wants to know more and read the latest independent academic research to look at research centre CREATe’s summary of evidence on the reforms. CREATe have also just released this statement on the proposals signed by leading experts in the field.

We have chosen to write to our MEPs to ask them to support the library, education and cultural heritage sectors. If you would like to do the same then we recommend you use the template letter provided by LIBER (Ligue des Bibliothèques Européenes de Recherche). LIBER will be able to supply you with a table of voting recommendations in support of the library, education and cultural sector which is essential if you want your letter (or email at this stage) to make a difference.

Note for those in the UK: If you want to find out who your MEP is in the UK then visit http://www.europarl.europa.eu/meps/en/search.html?country=GB ensuring you are using an email address with the europarl.eu domain. Whilst we are still in the UK our MEPs still represent us, and even after Brexit it is likely that the outcome of the vote will have an ongoing impact on UK law.

With many thanks to Barbara Stratton for raising this within the UK library community and for her help with creating this post.

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