Why article 13 causes so much displeasure

25 Mar, 2019 0 comments
Stefan Ensmann Stefan Ensmann

This article is currently being translated.

The German version is available here.

Today, for the first time in my life, I have the desire to share my opinion with the public and distribute it on several channels, since there is a charged atmosphere between politicians and the population all over Europe. This article and many more around the globe deal with the highly controversial article 17 – better known as the former article 13 – from the proposal for a reform of european copyright. But only in rare cases the information in such articles is complete or deals with all the aspects of this complex topic. This is not least because of the broad amount of things to say about such an emotionally charged topic, more than can ever fit on a few pages on a new blog. For this reason I would never claim to be able to write the one and only absolue truth here. But I can say with conviction: Nobody can.

Each opinion is shaped by own experiences and priorites. The resulting discussion is the foundation of each democracy and that is why I am writing this article. And this is why the support for the proposal by popular artists ist just as understandable and important as the rejection of the proposal by 200.000 protesters that went on the streets in Europe last Saturday alone.

My position is clear, I am with the protesters. I do reject the copyright reform as well in the current form and I certainly want to justify my opinion. Most importantly: I do respect the intellectual property of every author or creator and do not want, that their creations are used without their approval or even abused for wrong purposes. This applies to every piece of work, be it music, text, games, videos, etc. This opinion is also shared by the many people protesting against the copyright reform. Nobody wants, that artists are not paid fairly for their work. The organizers of the protests are regularly repeating this aspect, although it is often ignored.

For the current proposal the devil is in the detail. How good this advance in the digital copyright may be, it is just as vulnerable in the formulation of the means to implement to protect the artists from a copyright infringement. And with this I am coming to article 17 (or 13) and the main reason for the protests agains this reform

On the following pages I would like to talk about the following aspects:

  1. What is written in article 17?
  2. Why are the people so scared of article 17?
  3. Why am I rejecting this copyright reform?

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