Brussels — Over 80 organisations, including the Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA), warn EU Countries in a short statement that current negotiations on the proposal for a Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market are on the verge of causing irreparable damage to Europe’s fundamental rights, economy, competitiveness, education, research, innovation, creativity and culture.

This warning is conveyed to the EU Competitiveness Council in one sentence by, among others, human and digital rights organizations, start-ups, publishers, libraries, scientific and research institutions, universities, technology businesses and Internet service providers from all across the EU.

A detailed annex, listing 29 letters and analysis published by European stakeholders and experts since the publication of the EU Commission’s proposal in September 2016, demonstrates the substance of this claim – especially with regard to Article 11 (the new “publishers’ right”) and Article 13  (on intermediary liability and filtering mechanisms for user uploads).

CCIA has long warned that the outcome of this copyright reform might be the end of the Internet as users currently know it. The undermining of the intermediary liability regime and the implementation of mandatory filters for user-uploaded content would impose private censorship upon European citizens, and the creation of new exclusive rights for press publishers would strongly undermine the free flow of information on the Internet.

The following can be attributed to CCIA Senior Policy Manager, Maud Sacquet:

“Recent negotiations seem to rewrite the legal foundation of the Internet every two weeks. This letter – from very diverse stakeholders all across the EU – warns of the irreparable damage such discussions would have on Europe’s fundamental rights, economy, competitiveness, research, innovation and creativity. CCIA urges European countries to put the copyright reform back on the right track.”

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