ICYMI – LA Times Ed Board Supports Safe Harbor Provisions


Copyright holders win big in Europe, but at what cost?

As the European Union moves toward mandatory content filtering, the Los Angeles Times Editorial Board wrote in support of the existing American balanced copyright framework as a model that enables innovation and creativity without infringing on rightsholders’ original work.

Below are excerpts from the editorial.

“The risk and cost imposed by these provisions is so significant that only companies the size of Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are likely to remain open to users posting and sharing content freely. Ironically, the measure could drive off smaller companies that cater to upstart musicians and filmmakers looking for a low-cost way to market and sell their work online, simply because they can’t afford the filtering technology and licensing deals they’d need to guard against users infringing someone else’s copyrighted material.

From that perspective, the balance struck in U.S. law — where people posting content are liable if they infringe while the sites are required to take down works when notified of infringements — is the better one, even though copyright owners have legitimate complaints about how hard it is to rein in piracy. The U.S. model has allowed companies and creators to innovate without having to seek permission from copyright holders, as long as they do not infringe. The new European Union directive threatens that spirit, to its members’ detriment.”

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