European copyright reform will not do well for journalists either. Here is why.

Giovanni Minelli
Sep 13, 2018 · 7 min read

Why the new copyright law just passed by the European Parliament is not the right way to help newspapers make peace with users, platforms and small creators of content. And if Athens cries Sparta does not laugh.


On 12 September 2018 the EU Parliament meeting in Strasbourg plenary voted in favor of European copyright reform.

The proposal on Copyright received 438 votes in favor , 226 against and 39 abstentions. MEPs approved a number of proposed amendments to Articles 11 and 13 of the Copyright Directive proposal, which are nevertheless passed and have not been cleared.


But what are the critical points of the reform, the ones that are creating so much controversy and division here, overseas? (Assuming that 80% of both American Medium readers, edit)
Are the Articles 11 and 13 , which have critical implications for freedom of expression on the web and newspapers.

Article 11 introduces a “link on the” tax the news, according to which publishers may require the payment of fees by aggregators, and blogs from the app sharing a published news.

Article 13 , however, could lead to forms of censorship, because it makes the platforms responsible for any breach of copyright content hosting and invites them to adopt filters for uploading copyrighted content.


They were rejected by the Efdd and amendments M5S who proposed the ‘ elimination in the whole of Articles 11 and 13 .

The specific text voted that the uploading of content on online encyclopedias that do not have commercial purposes, such as Wikipedia , or on platforms for the sharing of open source software, such as GitHub, will be automatically excluded from the obligation to comply with the new rules on copyright.

Wikipedia , and nonprofit platforms such as GitHub, will be automatically excluded from the obligation to comply with the new rules on copyright.

The real problem


Currently aggregators, news apps and other platforms and blogs that make content curation can be embedded, quote and display portions of texts and photographs taken from the newspapers portals, gaining money from the user traffic.
Readers may in fact spend much time staying On Aggregator, browsing the headlines and thumbnails, and clicking on advertisements.
I think of Flipboard and Google news as a good example of this.

Flipboard on tablets, similar to an online journal, lets you read without leaving the app.

The aforementioned Article 11 will provide platforms that pay a small percentage to the creator of the original content for each use (sharing, reading, embed, even partial quote) made of it.

In Web 2.0, in which — again — we Realize what economic impact this could have new regulations on companies like Facebook and Google.
These business realities could hold up the burden, slightly reducing profits and will defend itself effectively.

The real problem will be for the audience of content curators, YouTubers, independent bloggerswho can no longer cite three lines from an article on their blog and without risk paying or worse suffer a cause by publishing groups.

Article 13 has even worse implications for users and platforms, provides in detail the legal responsibility for the contents to shift by users to the latter.

The platforms will have to equip themselves with copyright control much more advanced tools, or even rely on the control of a human operator . (Imagine a Youtube version where any uploaded video is not approved until after 48 hours, or 14 days as an iOS app …)

According to the article 13 youtuber one will not be able to comment as streaming a video game his game, or review audio-visual products.
Taken literally may not even be able to speak of physical products like cameras and phones: the Big Brother!

The privacy implications are very serious , with a pre-Orwellian scenario in which a Big Brother, with its employees controls “what can be published or not.”
At this point the transition from control by private companies, than by state employees and police would be short.

Again, for the self-creators would be a blow : to wait days before you see your videos published, would result in a run on platforms and self-publishing on its website, with the risk of ongoing lawsuits.

Censoring and lobbying is not the solution

For years the newspapers — print and online — see drop steadily the number of readers, and as a result sales of copies and advertising investments, which are a consequence of the public.

The dramatic drop in Italian newspapers

The world of information has changed since the early 2000s: they have multiplied the sources often fans are suddenly journalists and gradually organized into new blog of information that are now influential, Youtube has become the new TV, with a its audience and its presenters, finally, the social network “pure” like Facebook and Twitter have enabled billions of people to publish not only comment, but also micro-news and content.

The world has changed. Publishers and journalists should deal with it.

If today’s audiences prefer to get lost behind the sirens of influencers and bloggers, rather than buy and read the editorials and subscribe to newspapers and online newspapers, it is because they were outmoded or broken.

61% of the “digital” budget went to Goo + FB in 2017

Instead of making hidden Lobby and public, in newsrooms should ask why the papers have been overcome by young amateurs with minimal resources, with passion to give away, who publish on free platforms.

The Italian example is made of a category — that of journalists — perched in defense and already internally divided between journalists newcome (“pubblicisti”) and “Article 1”, which are part of the Order.
Anyone others wanted to write an editorial, it might not.
Editorial offices are closed, and for years, to defend the “old guard” in the advantageous position, the new generations only entitled to temporary contracts and low fees.

You cannot redo… and the consequences of the law.

We return to the question of copyright. Once millions and millions of people have tried the possibility of self-expression and sharing of content, you will never go back.

← No taking back to the ’90s: the consumer hypnotised by advertising that you drink all, the media “one to many” non-interactive, the situation where a handful of chief editor decided what needs to read people, and where there they are sources for a cross-check.

The approval of this legislation — which now goes under negotiation until later this year — could lead to unexpected results for publishers of newspapers and online media: while it is true that aggregators make money with previews and sharing their news, it is true that many users then end up on the pages of newspapers to read the full news.

Plainly put, the editors do not realize that aggregators like Google News, Flipboard, Apple News app carry their traffic, and provide free exposure to their websites!
One of the possible responses by aggregation platforms could be simply to… close the service in Europe!

In 2014 in Germany and Spain, following similar national regulations the incoming call, Google News has chosen to close its doors.

The solution, a change of model.


The current model information is full of costs and superstructures that have accumulated over decades: the warheads were receiving funding from the state and are printed several copies pulped, or, Category orders do not allow the right replacement rate (and of ideas) in the newsroom. And finally the big business groups control the newspapers and directs the editorial line.


Future solutions may be many, but one of them is already out there and it is working by few years: it is the model of direct financial support from the users to the content creators, through micro-donations and subscriptions.

The best example that comes to mind is the platform

The homepage

Thank Patreon and similar platforms, a myriad of small creators can be paid directly from their (as applicable) readers, followers, contributors, supporters.

New talent can find space and resources to start, without having to switch from the “doomsday” of personnel departments, recruiters, drawing heads, and endless work placements.

The home of

← Another excellent example is the same, blogging and writing platform that ingeniously redistributes the proceeds of subscriptions among the contributors.

On a larger scale, established warheads could follow this new model, abandoning the twentieth century system made of advertising space (pins, half pages, double pages) and investments of large lenders.

To have a future and remain popular, the world of information will have to accept the challenge in terms of content with the new voices, and not expect principled victories based on positions of income from the past.

Giovanni Minelli
P.S. Did you like the article?
Go through again and and report any incorrect translation for US english!

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