Copyright Reform: EBLIDA signs Open Letter calling for deletion of Articles 11 and 13

EBLIDA joins the call for deletion of Articles 11 The ‘Link Tax’ and 13 Online Content Sharing.


89 organisations, defenders of freedom of expression and freedom of access to information, co-signed a letter asking for the deletion of controversial articles in the proposed European copyright directive.

Despite more than two years of negotiations, it has not been possible for EU policy makers to take the serious concerns of industry, civil society, academics, and international observers such as the UN special rapporteur on freedom of expression into account, as the premises both Articles are built on are fundamentally wrong. In light of the deadlock of the negotiations on Articles 11 and 13, as well as taking into consideration the cautious stance of large parts of the creative industries, we ask you to delete Articles 11 and 13 from the proposal. This would allow for a swift continuation of the negotiations, while the issues that were originally intended to be addressed by Articles 11 and 13 could be tackled in more appropriate legal frameworks than this Copyright Directive.

Open Letter calling for the deletion of Articles 11 and 13

Article 11 – The ‘Link Tax’

Article 11 (‘link tax’) introduces a new right for publishers in regards to the use of digital newspapers. Similar attempts in Germany and Spain have broadly been viewed as failed. The right, as originally proposed by the European Commission, is to deal with the digital use of newspapers by third parties. Exactly to what types of use the law may apply, and how this may affect end users (including libraries and researchers) has been discussed at length since 2016 and remains unclear (for further information, please see this letter from 169 copyright academics).

Article 13 – Online Content Sharing

Article 13 relating to online content sharing services, has had wide coverage in the main stream media. An online petition targeting Article 13 has 4.5 million signatures already and, according to MEP Julia Reda, will become the largest ever online petition if it surpasses 4.9 million signatures.

The legislation is aimed at changing existing legal regimes and introducing new obligations on organisations who allow end users to upload content to their platforms.

Working with other library and university groups we have repeatedly voiced our concerns that the provisions and core definitions also apply to platforms coming from the education and research sector such as Open Access Repositories and some Open Education Resources (OER).

We are hoping that decisionmakers will listen to our call.

>>> Read the joint letter.



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