Members of Germany's Main Political Parties Start 'Fair Copyright Initiative'
from the it-seems-they-really-get-it dept
Three guidelines for fair copyrightThe three guidelines are: a simplification of copyright; a fair use principle that can respond flexibly to technological developments; and a recognition that throwing people off the Internet for copyright infringements is neither just nor effective:
We are a group of members of the CDU/CSU. For us, the Internet is part of everyday life, whether as an economic foundation, a source of information, a means of communication, a tool for our policy work or a subject for research.
For more and more people, the Internet is taking over the the role that traditional media once held, and is becoming the dominant medium.It's impressive not only that a group of politicians should understand and articulate the issues so clearly, but that they should feel strongly enough about them to set up an initiative and web site proclaiming the fact. When moves to make relevant laws fair and proportionate span the entire political spectrum, it offers the hope that the copyright pendulum may be starting to reach its maximum, in some countries at least.
It is not only a source of information, but also a workplace and social space. Thus for a large, ever-growing number of people it is an indispensable part of their lives.
Nobody would suggest, for example, prohibiting a shoplifter from accessing newspapers or television.
The idea of imposing a temporary block on Internet access in the case of copyright infringement is equally absurd. This massive encroachment on fundamental rights is obviously unconstitutional, taking into account the principle of proportionality.
The existing legal system currently provides adequate civil and criminal sanctions for copyright infringement.
Individual blocks are also not technically and practically feasible - for example for the following reasons:
- The blocking of Internet access may constitute a disproportionate interference in professional and academic freedom.
- With an increasing number of smart phones and tablet computers, it is a fact of life that many people have more than one Internet connection available.
- ISPs do not have a suitable blocking system, which would in any case be easy to circumvent.
- Fixed line Internet access points are typically used by more than one person, eg by a family or community.
Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and on Google+