The Internet Heralds A New Generation Of Online Creators And Economic Activity. The New York Times’ Farhad Manjoo made the case for How the Internet Is Saving Culture, Not Killing It, explaining in a March 15 story how the internet has resulted in both an explosion of creativity and entrepreneurship — often hand-in-hand. The rise of subscription-based platforms like Netflix and Spotify coupled with a boom in podcast and blog subscriptions have resulted in a new generation of online creators. “I don’t have to go out on the road and play in bars,” said Peter Hollens, an a capella singer on YouTube. “I can be a father and I can be a husband…[The internet] normalizes the career of being an artist, which has never been normalized.”
Ed Sheeran: I Love Seeing People Cover My Songs. London street artist Charlotte Campbell uses Facebook to post her latest cover songs, but recently a 15-second snippet of her cover of Ed Sheeran’s new hit “Castle on the Hill” was flagged for copyright infringement and she was banned from the social media site. Fortunately, Sheeran, who has credited the internet with propelling his music career as British students shared his songs, found out about the ban and posted his support on Facebook, writing: “I bloody love seeing people cover my songs. One of the best things I get out of this job is seeing other people find enjoyment too,” according to TorrentFreak in Ed Sheeran Tells Musician Fan He’ll “Sort Out” Facebook Copyright Ban.
SXSW: Re:Create Members Host Copyright And Innovation Panels. This week at SXSW, Re:Create members led important conversations about the future of tech policy. Panels included “The Internet of Things You Don’t Own” with representatives from Public Knowledge and the R Street Institute discussing copyrighted software and other issues. Additionally, the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) hosted its fourth annual Innovation Policy Day where panelists explored how tech advocates can work with policymakers to advance technological innovation.
Leaked Report Reveals European Parliament Divided On Proposed Link Tax. In an Electronic Frontier Foundation blog post, Jeremy Malcolm reported that the European Parliament’s Legal Affairs (JURI) Committee criticized proposals to mandate compulsory copyright filters and require online news aggregators to pay licensing fees for articles they link to (aka the “link tax”). According to the leaked JURI report, the filtering proposal would “[fail] to take account of the limitations and exceptions to copyright that Europe recognizes, such as the right of quotation.” Furthermore, the Committee slammed the link tax because digitization increases public access to the news and press.
CDT Calls For A Balanced European Copyright Framework. In the March edition of the EU Tech Policy Brief, the Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT) reasserted its concerns about the European Commission’s proposal for a Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market. The proposal would implement a strict copyright regime that would limit access to information and impede innovation. CDT urged the Commission to find a balanced copyright framework that addresses the interests of all who are affected by copyright, including creators, internet users, and education and cultural institutions.