Uruguay Politicians Give Unanimous Preliminary Approval To Copyright Reform, Publishers Fight It Anyway
from the well,-of-course-they-do dept
All around the world, people are pushing to get copyright updated to reflect the digital world we live in. And all around the world, copyright industries are fighting tooth and nail to stop them. Here's an example from Uruguay, where something good could be about to happen on the copyright front, as a post on the Creative Commons blog explains:
Uruguay is in the process of updating its copyright law, and in April a bill was preliminarily approved in the Senate. The law introduces changes that would benefit students, librarians, researchers, and the general public by legalizing commonplace digital practices, adding orphan works exceptions, and removing criminal penalties for minor copyright infringements. University students were the original proponents of the limitations and exceptions bill.
Of course, all that was totally unacceptable to the local publishing industry, which got together and wrote a document outlining what it would like to see instead. By an amazing coincidence, its suggestions would neuter most of the changes that might benefit the public by:
Eliminating the exception that permits copying for personal use
The Creative Commons post has the details, and summarizes:
Retaining the possibility for criminal penalties for minor infringements
Drastically limiting the scope of exceptions and limitations for education
Adding severe restrictions on libraries
Enacting restrictions on freedom of panorama
Their document recommends scaling back most of the user-friendly provisions in the bill, cuts other items that were drafted by the Council of Copyright in the Ministry of Education and Culture -- and which already received unanimous political support by all parties in the Senate.
That last point about the unanimous cross-party political support shows that the copyright maximalists care as little about democracy as they do about the public. All they want is to retain the privileges they have enjoyed for hundreds of years, and to hell with anyone else.