Authors: Petra Sitte, Simon Weiß
In this article series, we will discuss the contents of the new draft of the DSM Directive. What was the Directive initially about, what does the current draft say, what has been changed compared to earlier drafts, and what needs to be amended in our view? This part will focus on Article 17, i.e. on upload filters, while in part 2 we will turn to copyright contract law.
What is it about?
There is no single part of the EU copyright reform that has drawn as much attention and criticism as Article 17. The core issue is this: platforms to which users can upload content, such as YouTube, must in future obtain licenses for all forms of content and prevent unlicensed content from being uploaded. This results in an obligation to install upload filters, i.e., to have uploaded content checked and blocked by automated software filters.
These upload filters are dangerous, as there exists no technical procedure capable of identifying the contexts that define whether a particular publication violates, or respects, copyright law. This inevitably leads to “overblocking”, i.e., the blocking of actually permitted content, and thus limits users’ freedom of expression.
We, The Left Party Parliamentary Group in the German Bundestag, have therefore strictly opposed Article 17 from the outset and still hope that the European Court of Justice will overturn this provision given that it violates fundamental rights. The German government has announced in a detailed protocol statement that it seeks to make upload filters “largely unnecessary” when implementing the provision.mehr lesen