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Author Topic: EU Copyright Directive to Turn Google into Ghost Town  (Read 68 times)
javajolt
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« on: January 17, 2019, 11:36:49 AM »
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The EU Copyright Directive has made a lot of waves lately given that many fear that some of its provisions will lead to increased censorship, with almost 4.5 million Europeans signing a change.org petition to stop Article 13.

This article was the one that attracted almost everyone's attention seeing that it will require large online platforms such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to always keep an eye out on what their users are uploading and block all copyrighted items such as videos, images, and text.

The other controversial article part of the EU Copyright Directive is Article 11, a provision which will force news aggregators to pay the copyright holders a fee for every news item they link to.

Google, one of the most heated critics of the two provisions, is now testing a new search engine results page (SERP) template where the EU Copyright Directive is applied to the listed search results "to understand what the impact of the proposed EU Copyright Directive would be to our users and publisher partners," according to Search Engine Land.

EU Copyright Directive will turn SERPs into a ghost town according to Google

As the SERP screenshots show, Google's search results will look like a deserted town, with no article titles, no images, and no news summaries, or "like pages that have failed to completely load" as Search Engine Land's Greg Sterling very appropriately describes them.


EU Copyright Directive SERP templates - click to enlarge
According to a Q and A page on the "Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market" directive published by the EU Parliament's Legislative Affairs Committee (JURI) on January 11:

Quote
The proposed "Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market" seeks to ensure that artists (especially small ones, for example, musicians), and news publishers and journalists benefit from the online world and the internet as they do from the offline world.


JURI continues to say that, because of the current outdated copyright rules, the ones collecting all the rewards from the work of artists, news publishers, and journalists are news aggregators and online platforms, hence making it very hard for content creators to earn a decent living.

Moreover, JURI summarizes the draft directive:

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The draft directive intends to oblige giant internet platforms and news aggregators (like YouTube or GoogleNews) to pay content creators (artists/musicians/actors and journalists) what they truly owe them;

No new rights or obligations are being created. What is currently legal and permitted to share will remain legal and permitted to share.


How the Internet in the EU and Google's search results will look like after the EU Copyright Directive will be sent to the EU government to be enacted as a law is not yet known.

However, given the way similar copyright legislation performed in Spain and Germany, the future looks very bleak for both journalists and EU citizens who want to freely access news content on the Internet.

As Richard Gingras, Google's News VP said in December:

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Unlike people in other parts of the world, European citizens may no longer find the most relevant news across the web, but rather the news that online services have been able to commercially license. We believe the information we show should be based on quality, not on payment. And we believe its not in the interest of European citizens to change that.


Five days ago, when the Q and A page addressing the EU Copyright Directive was published European Parliament's website the discussions were still ongoing, with the directive's text subject to modification during the trilogue negotiations taking place between the European Parliament, the European Commission, and the Council of the European Union.

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