Guy In Charge Of EU Copyright Directive Claims He Didn't Know What He Voted On, Needs To Fix Things

from the well,-that-builds-confidence dept

Following the decision earlier this week of the EU Parliament to vote for the destruction of the open web by putting in place some pretty awful copyright proposals, people began highlighting more and more problems with the bill. Most of the focus before the vote had been on two particular articles, Article 11 and Article 13. But there are many other problems in the Directive as well -- it was just getting to be overwhelming to get into the weeds on all of them. One area of concern was in Article 12, which included a special new form of copyright for sporting events. Specifically, with no debate or discussion the legal affairs committee of the EU Parliament added in text saying that sporting event organizers would gain absolute control over recording, sharing and presenting any film clips -- even those that would otherwise be deemed legal in other copyright contexts. And yes, the law implies that if you're at a sports event, you can't even film anything from your own seat as that is reserved solely to the event organizers.

Incredibly, after the vote approving the directive, reporter Emanuel Karisten of the Swedish publication Breakit, asked Voss about this and Voss gave a fairly astounding answer, stating that "this was kind of a mistake" and that "no one had been aware of this." Later he states that he didn't know it was in there and he'll have to fix it:

Voss: This was kind of mistake I think by the JURI committee. Someone amended this. No one had been aware of this.

Reporter: But it was passed...

... discussion by someone with Voss saying that it's really about gambling/betting operations before Voss jumps back in ...

Voss: I didn’t know that this was in the proposal so far, so of course I have to deal with it now.... I do not consider that the commission and council will have this inside the proposal.

Later he says "because of the time and pressure" they concentrated on other areas of the bill. Which... does not seem like a good excuse.

You can listen to the exchange here:

Meanwhile, MEP Julia Reda is calling bullshit on the claim that Voss was "unaware" that this was in the proposal, noting not only that she had written about the issue prior to the vote, but that she had raised it directly with Voss and his colleagues:

There are a few possibilities here, none of which make Voss look any good. He either voted for an amendment he hadn't read and/or didn't understand, or he's lying to this reporter. It also suggests that rather than taking the concerns of critics like Reda seriously, Voss just tuned them out and happily voted away for such horrible proposals.

We've raised questions before about Voss's views on all of this, as he seems almost hysterically uninformed about how actual copyright policy works, even as he drives forward such a horrible policy. This seems to be yet more evidence that a few special interests made it clear to Voss what they wanted to do, and he just agreed to do that, no matter what concerns anyone else had.


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  • icon
    hij (profile), 14 Sep 2018 @ 11:58am

    The fix is a broken approach

    So now they want to go back and fix a few things piecemeal until people stop complaining too much? That is a great way for them to just keep making it a little less onerous until they can stand the heat and screw over as many people as possible while placating a few vocal folks.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 12:00pm

    Ah... the good ole game is afoot

    As usual a politician feigns ignorant and more than enough are going to be willing to believe him.

    Which is worse? A politician passing a law they later admit they were ignorant of or a politicians willfully lying about what the law was intended to do?

    Only an utter fool would accept the premise behind Hanlon's razor.

    In government it is the complete and utter fucking opposite! These fucks have teams of lawyers and think tanks explaining and writing shit for them. Not only are they aware of the problems the law will cause, they are aware of why they want those problems to surface.

    got you by the short and curlies? no... they have you by your very soul!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 12:37pm

    it's obviously that the whole aim of the Copyright Directive is to stop anyone except the legacy industries from being able to do anything on the Internet without getting permission and without paying for that permission. it also seems obvious as well that Voss was 'encouraged' to do what he did by those industries and took that 'encouragement' without taking the slightest bit of notice of any of the concerns raised by a myriad of people and organisations. the ultimate aim is to hand complete control of the Internet over to the copyright industries, the music and movie industries in particular and stop ordinary people from being able to do what the Internet was designed to do, ie allow everyone, everywhere, to communicate with everyone else, everywhere else, anytime over anything and anyone! those in powerful positions have been controlling the Planet and the population for far too long and have no intention of giving up that control any time soon. hence these ridiculous laws being brought in by people who take personal reward more serious than looking out for what they should be. the EU has turned into a despicable organisation and with Germany at it's head, it will take control without having to do anything except exert it's financial muscle! a much easier way than in the 2 previous attempts of 1914-18 and 1939-45!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      John Smith, 15 Sep 2018 @ 7:22pm

      Re:

      you mean it stosp anyone B UT THE CREATORS from making money on THEIR OWN WORK.

      Many indies rely on copyright protection as well, and the relatively small amount of sales can earn them a living, precisely because they don't need the big-company intermediarie to market for them.

      Nothing stops someone from marketing their own work. To claim that only big publishers or media companies benefit is disingenuous and/or a strawperson* argument.

      *The new, more inclusive, gender-neurtal term.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2018 @ 8:53am

        Re: Re:

        You are overlooking a lot of history, which shows that the more most markets are regulated, the easier it is for big corporations to own the market, and the harder it is for individuals to enter the market, as the end up spending all their time dealing with bureaucracies, and not producing that which they can sell.

        These proposals are regulations governing the distribution of copyrighted materials, and the way they are written show that the are based on, and intended to ensure that only big corporations can distribute copyrighted works.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2018 @ 2:20am

          Re: Re: Re:

          And in the end big corporations will fail.

          They will never take complete control of the Internet and that something Anonymous will never understand.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2018 @ 2:18am

      Re:

      They will never be able to stop anyone except the legacy industries from being able to do anything on the Internet without getting permission and without paying for that permission.

      They will never hand complete control of the Internet over to the copyright industries and never stop ordinary people from being able to do what the Internet was designed to do.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    ShadowNinja (profile), 14 Sep 2018 @ 12:50pm

    Crap like this are why I keep dreaming of the day where a new generation puts their foot down and says "enough is enough already" and massively scales back copyright and it's reach.

    All it ever does is take stuff away from us and turn us into criminals for stupid things that shouldn't be illegal like this.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 1:19pm

      Re:

      it requires blood...

      Are you willing to give it and which army do you bring? Every war fought is over this problem. There is no other reason for war, but wealth/power and land/resources.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 2:09pm

        Re: Re:

        LOL

        Hey clown shoes, everyone saw how poorly attended the protests were so good luck with your rebellion

        And Julia Reda belongs to the “Pirate Party” so of course Masnick fawns at any declaration she utters lol

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      John Smith, 14 Sep 2018 @ 6:05pm

      Re:

      Copyright is so "onerous" because in its absence, you get a patronage model, and individual publishers writing their own contracts which will be far more restrictive. This is why we have copyright law in the first place.

      Liberatarians don't realize that we had their deregulatd utopia in almost every cas where we now have laws. We tried it their way, and it didn't work. The government that governs least governs best unti a hurricane hits or a contagious disease enters the population.

      Public water fountains are socialist! So is FEMA. People need to take responsibility for choosing to live in the path of a hurricane!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 15 Sep 2018 @ 7:08am

        Re: Re:

        Okay... so... is voting down John Smith just a hobby for everybody no matter what he says?

        It isn't abusive/trolling/spam, last I checked, just probably foolish to some degree when talking about copyright (individual contracts can be CC-based or use a "copyleft" style license) and assuming that everyone can actually afford to move out of the path of hurricanes, or even predict how far inland the next huge storm will be and move accordingly.

        I disagree with him, but I'm not threatened.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          That One Guy (profile), 15 Sep 2018 @ 4:20pm

          Actions have consequenes

          Thanks to their habitual dishonesty(among other things) their reputation has apparently reached the point where people have no interest in anything they might say, and flag it by default.

          Unfortunate assuming they actually make an honest statement or argument at some point, but they've only themselves to blame.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 14 Sep 2018 @ 1:01pm

    Well if it's too difficult for you...

    Giving him the benefit of the doubt and assuming that he's not lying(which I don't believe is the case, I think he's lying through his teeth), he basically just admitted that he's willing to vote on laws with massive impact on the public without knowing what's in them.

    Or in other words, his one job, making laws and voting on them, is something that is apparently just too difficult a task for him to manage.

    That being the case certainly seems like he needs to be given the boot and replaced by someone for whom reading the proposed laws before voting on them is not a herculian task, and is instead treated as the most basic part of the job.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      John Smith, 14 Sep 2018 @ 6:07pm

      Re: Well if it's too difficult for you...

      An actress who wound up in a nude scene said she didn't know what she was doing when she filmed it....or when she signed the release.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 6:34pm

        Re: Re: Well if it's too difficult for you...

        Wow, that escalated quickly. Quickly, but unsurprising coming from the resident triggered misogynist.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 15 Sep 2018 @ 7:18am

          Re: Re: Re: Well if it's too difficult for you...

          Indeed, you did jump too quickly. Women are too smart to ever skip reading a contract or willingly sign a "bad" contract only to regret it later, of course. /s

          Men are pretty stupid, too, though. They earn much less than their co-stars in straight porn. Definitely not equal pay...

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 1:11pm

    It's like any other desk job.
    Do something, get paid. No need to have any idea what you're doing. Let someone else figure things out.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 1:26pm

    "This was kind of a mistake"
    Im just skipping to the "shut down internet operations in europe look for other markets to hold ths wound" at this point. I cant deal man I cant deal.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Rekrul, 14 Sep 2018 @ 4:24pm

    So a politician voted for something he didn't understand and didn't know the effects of. How is this news?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Coyne Tibbets (profile), 14 Sep 2018 @ 7:26pm

    Just one

    Voss: I didn’t know that this was in the proposal so far, ...

    Voss, (sigh) you had one job.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2018 @ 11:33pm

    A fine example of the Brussels Business at work.
    Should be viewed by everyone at least once.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Seegras (profile), 15 Sep 2018 @ 3:03am

    Well, Voss actually has no idea about copyright, he's a total nincompoop. No, Voss is just a bought and paid for asshole.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Johnny Binglam, 15 Sep 2018 @ 6:14am

    Not surprised

    Quite frankly the european parliament has always worked like this and really no one at this point should be surprised at all.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 15 Sep 2018 @ 7:23am

    Apparently, the EU parliament is full of people frothing at the mouth to get "big tech's" money themselves and sees the "de-fanging" of the giants as a righteous Europeon duty, the passing of these articles was met with "thunderous applause".

    It's just a skim job to keep their kangaroo court of a government alive after the UK's money stops funding half of the EU's coffers (hopefully...).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      John Smith, 16 Sep 2018 @ 4:47am

      Re:

      Big Tech is parasitic, and has been using piracy to steal content and money from too many, for too long.

      It's onlyh right that this money should go back to those who earned it, not those who stole it.

      The era of arrogance, intransigence, and hubris is over.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2018 @ 9:18am

        Re: Re:

        I doubt it'd work that way. But also consider this: The upfront costs of making a EU-wide "content ID" for every piece of user-submitted content in their borders will bankrupt them more soundly than Brexit ever will.

        If it cost Google $60 million dollars to make Content ID to just identify video and audio data, what would it cost the EU to cover multiple kinds of media in addition to that: text, images, video, audio, all of it accumulating in likely billions of user submissions that need to be moderated a day?

        I swear we need remedial courses for politicians who don't understand technology. It inundated our lives before we knew what it was really doing. Either that, or they know it's a rubber-stamp operation and just got a nice "bonus" for "ruining Silicon Valley".

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          John Smith, 16 Sep 2018 @ 12:31pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          More likely, it will b a universal protection system that is tied to REGISATERED works, with the costs shared collectively by the entire industry, in proportion to its creation and revenue. The concept of "implied license" can apply to UGC, so that sounds like a nonissue.

          The money can come from the increased sales that come from NOT HAVING OUR WORK STOLEN!

          My main objection to the opposition here is that they claim to be looking out for my interests when they are not. I's like having Burglars explain why home security systems are unnecessary and should be illegal.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2018 @ 1:00pm

        Re: Re:

        It's not parasitic to show people where information of relevance to their interests can be found: Google News, Bing, search engines, etc. It's also not parasitic to collect and allow the display clearing houses of videos showcasing items people want to share from their own lives that's relevant to them and their friends: Youtube, Facebook. It's not parasitic to offer services that allow people to express what's going on in their lives real time: Twitter.

        Increasing and expanding the reach of copyright such that it further tightens down screws that your society obviously isn't supporting to begin with, evidenced by the huge number of Average Joes posting and watching music videos and movies on Youtube and torrent sites, isn't going to stick it to Google, who's the real target of this legislation. It's pyrrhic at best because it won't stop anyone, all it will do is enlarge the black hole in Europe when even more companies decide doing business in the EU is more trouble than its worth while any home grown alternatives will be overly burdened by compliance costs and technology that doesn't even exist (automated compliance checking).

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2018 @ 6:48am

    Bullshitters bullshitting: politicians.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    John Smith, 16 Sep 2018 @ 12:39pm

    Here's an example of why piracy is bad:

    Say I have a way for you to save $10-12 a month on your electric bill, which also saves $3-4 a month on your heating bill, and $1-2 a month on your grocery bill. What is my incentive to put this in a book?

    The second I publish it, it will be pirated, and 99 percent of my audience will be people who didn't payf or it. The fairytale that an appreciative audience will pay for it is generally refuted by the lack of appreciation a similar video "life hack" would make on YouTube, fromonations. Once pirated, other publishers and internet marketers would take over, and distribution would crush the indie.

    o make much as I could out of the intellectual property, I would still make it as a YouTube video, and make about $1-3 per 1,000 views (CPM), and still get paid somewhat, so I'm not totally impacted, though even that is not guaranteed. My options for making money w9ould be limited by piracy, however, and tis anathema to the purpose of copyright law, plus it shows how publishing how-tos is nowhere near as profitable as "perishable" articles like here on Techdirt, where by the time anyone would pirate them, they are no longer fresh (news copies each other all the time; ever see 100 tweets from different news accounts with the samie text?).

    This is just a small example. Bigger serets, like hoto makemoney in the stock market, wind up "given" away by scam artists who are promiting high-priced seminars, or the good information is restricted to a single customer or patron, or exploited by the author rather than thrown into the "pirate bay."

    This is also why many "golden geese" from the 1990s (god information) was not replaced by better information in the last twenty eyars: those who fed the good information assuming they'd be properly rewarded were not, so they jumped ship, leaving the scam artists and internet marketers to dominate the landscape.

    The public did not notice the difference, or care, because they were still getting "free answers" to their problems, h te fllacy that "all infrmationd qual.," even if, in one casek, the audience went from makg ncredible profits to screaming about being conned a decade later, due to this subtle erosion of the landcape. It's also why today's music absolutely tinks:no one is getting paid to make quality music.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2018 @ 1:58pm

      Re:

      If you do not want to publish Ebooks, have you looked at print on demand services, that way you are distributing paper copies. That way you limit the number of people that read copy, but it will rarely be only one person, except if you book is junk and the person who bought it is unwilling to inflict it one his friends.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2018 @ 3:32pm

      Re:

      This is a cool imaginary anecdote.

      Too bad thousands and thousands of people manage to make money off of their expert knowledge every single day, including by selling books.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2018 @ 5:08am

      Re:

      See, you don't need me to bitch about your burgeoning attempts to get rich off suckering people into buying your self-help garbage.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2018 @ 12:46pm

    Europe is definitely determined to kill the golden goose just to spite Google and Facebook. It's not going to end well. Web companies and hosting providers are just going to adjust access restrictions to block European access, and continue on as usual much like what's happening with GDPR. All they're doing is burdening potential home grown alternatives to Google, Facebook, Yahoo, etc, so they won't form to begin with, and create a black hole in Europe where any potential traffic from word of mouth advertising (which any savvy business owner will tell you is your BEST avenue of advertising) is far lower than it would be otherwise because of link taxing.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 17 Sep 2018 @ 12:58pm

      'We will punish them by hitting everyone BUT them.'

      Europe is definitely determined to kill the golden goose just to spite Google and Facebook.

      Which, assuming that is one of the main motivations here, is all sorts of funny because Google and Facebook are in the best position to handle this latest idiocy(what with having pools of money), whereas competitors to Google and Facebook, current and future, are going to get absolutely hammered, giving those two companies even more power and leverage.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Smartassicus the Roman, 16 Sep 2018 @ 6:29pm

    Justa Thought

    You have to pass it to see what's in it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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