Lied to over Link Tax

26 August 2016 — OpenMedia

Documents leaked this morning1 prove that the EU Commission misled the public earlier this week when it tweeted, “The @EU_Commission does not have any plans to tax hyperlinks.”2

You were lied to. We were lied to. The public was lied to.

These out-of-touch unelected bureaucrats think that if they call the link tax something else – like “neighbouring rights”3,4 – they can trick people like you and me, and slip this terrible legislation past us when they think nobody’s watching. Well they’re wrong. Dead wrong.

If passed, the link tax will allow media giants to charge for creating certain types of hyperlinks, granting them new powers to censor links. This would stifle innovation for new online services and break the Internet as we know it.

Decision-makers still have to get the link tax past a vote from elected Members of the European Parliament (MEPs). And the vote is coming fast. This is our moment to kill the link tax.

Donate now, and we will build a one-of-a-kind action tool that directly connects Internet users to their elected MEPs so we can convince them to stop this irresponsible link tax scheme dead in its tracks.

Please chip in today so we are ready for the final stage.

Clearly we cannot trust the Commission to tell the truth, and lobbyists for the publishing giants will be pushing hard in the coming weeks, so we need as much support as possible to ensure we’re ready for whatever comes next.

Please donate now, and help us build this tool in time before the link tax reaches the European Parliament.

The link tax has been strongly opposed by nearly 100,000 people from around the world. These Internet users, along with dozens of public interest groups, independent publishers, and web companies have spoken out against the link tax.

Today’s leak shows that the Commission plans to ignore these individuals and organizations, choosing instead to serve the selfish interests of a few large media companies.

They’re trying to lock this nightmare proposal into place, but we can still stop it.

The stakes are too high to watch this happen. Can I count on you to chip in ASAP?

–Josh, for OpenMedia


[1] Commission Staff Working Document Impact Assessment. Source: Statewatch.
[2] “The @EU_Commission does not have any plans to tax hyperlinks.” Source: European Commission on Twitter
[3] Taking a bad idea and making it worse: An ancillary copyright in snippets disguised as a neighbouring right for publishers. Source: OpenForumEurope.
[4] EU Commission: Yes, we will create new ancillary copyright for news publishers, but please stop calling it a “link tax.” Source: Communia.

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