Tell your MEP to stand up and say no to Censorship Machines and the Link Tax

11 November 2016 — OpenMedia

For the last year we’ve worked together to ensure that the huge new copyright law in the EU doesn’t crush our free expression online. But when the proposal finally came out last month, it confirmed our worst fears: The Link Tax is still alive.[1]

Act now

The European Commission came up with some of the worst copyright rules in the world. On top of plans to charge fees for links with snippets of text, they added new requirements for websites to monitor and censor content we upload. [2]

If enough constituents speak up, we can convince MEPs to kill this terrible plan.

You may be wondering if these rules relate to you after the Brexit vote, but as UK campaigner myself, I know we must continue to protect our right to link.

  • If these plans pass, it will seriously affect our ability to access and use European websites and content, no matter where we live in the world.
  • If these harmful proposals are left unchallenged, UK leaders will face pressure to pass similar laws at the national level: with new tech standards, corporate lobbying, or part of the leaving deal.

Between the Link Tax and Europe’s new censorship machine, these proposals will mean a huge hit on our free expression on the Internet.

The good news is Members of the European Parliament have the power to stop this disastrous proposal dead in its tracks.

Use our tool to tell your MEP: “You must stop any rules that impose a Link Tax and mandatory censorship machines.”

The Link Tax will mean licensing fees and unaffordable contracts for sites that share news.

We will see favourite websites stripped of links, or forced out of business because they can’t afford hyperlinks.[3]

Censorship machine rules mean websites which let users create content must build robot programs to spy for content that big media groups don’t want up. Imagine videos, website posts and art deleted as soon as they are uploaded because of a biased algorithm.[4]

Some MEPs are already standing up against the link tax, including the European Parliament’s Vice-President Alexander Lambsdorff, and that’s due to the pressure you’ve been keeping on. We’ve come a long way but we are still up against powerful vested interests.

Please act now and tell your MEP to stand up for Europeans: act1.openmedia.org/savethelink

Thank you,

Ruth Coustick-Deal, on behalf of your OpenMedia team

P.S. OpenMedia is a small non-profit organization that relies on donations from people like you to safeguard the open Internet. Please consider donating to help us defend the hyperlink today.

Footnotes

[1] Leaked European Commission Copyright Plans Ignore the Public Interest. Source: Creative Commons

[2] Upload Filtering Mandate Would Shred European Copyright Safe Harbor. Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation

[3] What the heck is ancillary copyright and why do we call it the Link Tax? Source: OpenMedia

[4] Europe’s Censorship Robots: An attack on our basic rights. Source: OpenMedia

Other resources

1. Full European legislation on the Copyright Directive in the Digital Single Market. See Articles 11 & 13 Source: European Commission

2. Copyright reform a Guide for the Perplexed. Source: Communia & EDRi