If one were pessimistic, one might have predicted governments would try to assert themselves online. Mark their territory, if you will. Few people would’ve predicted copyright would be the niche where the various interested parties would go at it. Well, it is. Yes, we have a copyright war consisting of the EU against everyone.
The EU’s enthusiasm for creating internet red tape comes with a risk – isolation. At what point do businesses located in non-EU countries calculate the cost of compliance and determine it isn’t worth the effort and money? Some companies already have reached this demarcation line.
American Tech Companies
The EU is ostensibly fighting a war against the mammoth American tech companies like Google and Facebook. What is the goal? To diminish these companies. The irony is large American tech companies are some of the few that have the vast labor and financial resources to comply with all the new rules. Indeed, Facebook just announced it has set aside $3,000,000,000 to pay a potential FTC fine. The astounding nature of this announcement can’t be stressed enough. Facebook has three BILLION dollars just sitting around it can use to pay a fine. Spending a few million to comply with a bizarre new regulation is nothing.
What ultimately becomes of the copyright wars? If I could predict the future, I would be floating around on a yacht somewhere. With lasses named Summer and Spring. No. Bunny and Thumper. [Don’t ask.] Alas, I am not and its humanities’ loss. Regardless, the EU efforts to institute a radical change to copyright law around the world appears doomed to failure. The EU has based the Copyright Directive on theories already proven to be a failure – the link tax – and restrictions on free speech that even its members are balking at – looking at you Poland and Italy.
The EU may have started a movement on the privacy front, but a similar result for copyright law seems a stretch at best. Viva la DMCA!
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