By Aaron Kesel
Protests all over Europe have been planned by Anonymous, as well as activists and politicians behind Pirate Parties International (PPI) for March 23rd, to fight against copyright companies and EU bureaucrats seeking to destroy the Internet with their proposed upload filter and link tax, (Article 11 and Article 13.) Meanwhile, the Bureaucrats are trying to push the vote before there is wide-scale outrage for their proposals for the Internet.
The first wave of street protests in at least 20 different cities in 15 countries took place on January 19, 2019, all across Europe.
Now, Anons, Pirates and activists alike are planning more massive demonstrations across Europe to show members of the European Parliament (MEPs) that public consensus is against the proposed articles. The Articles 11,12 and 13, were finalized for voting at the end of March.
However, a breaking development reported by Pirate Party Germany’s Julia Reda may push for further protests much earlier than March 23rd. Reda notes that Manfred Weber and the EPP Group are trying to push for the vote for ACTA 2 next week ahead of the planned protests ignoring the will of the people, which she adds is “troubling for democracy and outrageous.” Reda expressed that to stop the early voting EU citizens should contact political group leaders.
There are even negotiations going on in the Parliament to draw the voting as early as Thursday — that’s two days from now, which gives us all very little time to organize against it.
To stop the © vote from being rushed through before the #SaveYourInternet protests, reach out to the political groups’ leaders:
• @EPPgroup: @ManfredWeber
• @TheProgressives: @UdoBullmann
• @ECRgroup: @SyedKamall
• @ALDEgroup: @guyverhofstadt
(Greens & Left will vote against)
— Julia Reda (@Senficon) March 4, 2019
Save The Internet, another campaign to stop the ACTA 2 vote, also expressed that the early voting was a way for EU political leaders to ignore the protests and carry through with their crusade against the Internet. The group is calling for “spontaneous demonstrations in front of CDU/CSU/EPP branches.”
The arrogant approach of the CDU/CSU/EPP can’t be ignored! They want to bring the vote forward. We must act now! #Savetheinternet calls for spontaneous demonstrations! Organize demos everywhere in front of CDU/CSU/EPP branches! #SaveYourInternet #uploadfilter #Artikel13Demo pic.twitter.com/0zgRdHcbyY
— Savetheinternet.info (@uploadfilter) March 4, 2019
Pirate Party Germany member Julia Reda notes the final horrifying shocking changes made to the bill in a blog post.
- Commercial sites and apps where users can post material must make “best efforts” to preemptively buy licences for anything that users may possibly upload – that is: all copyrighted content in the world. An impossible feat.
- In addition, all but very few sites (those both tiny and very new) will need to do everything in their power to prevent anything from ever going online that may be an unauthorised copy of a work that a rightsholder has registered with the platform. They will have no choice but to deploy upload filters, which are by their nature both expensive and error-prone.
- Should a court ever find their licensing or filtering efforts not fierce enough, sites are directly liable for infringements as if they had committed them themselves. This massive threat will lead platforms to over-comply with these rules to stay on the safe side, further worsening the impact on our freedom of speech.
Reda also expresses that for the link tax, there will be extra copyright for news sites, like the one you are reading now.
- Reproducing more than “single words or very short extracts” of news stories will require a licence. That will likely cover many of the snippets commonly shown alongside links today in order to give you an idea of what they lead to. We will have to wait and see how courts interpret what “very short” means in practice – until then, hyperlinking (with snippets) will be mired in legal uncertainty.
- No exceptions are made even for services run by individuals, small companies or non-profits, which probably includes any monetised blogs or websites.
Pirate Party Germany’s Julia Reda has also started a campaign called Pledge2019.eu against those who have voted for ACTA 2 utilizing the upcoming elections stating “if you vote for upload filters we won’t vote for you.”
It’s Monday, MEPs are returning to Brussels. Time to give them a call! 69 MEPs signed the #Pledge2019 last week to vote against #Article13. Protests are working, many German MEPs have signed. But we only have weeks left before the final vote end of March! https://t.co/YnJDHDGViB pic.twitter.com/e7i2mspL3R
— Julia Reda (@Senficon) March 4, 2019
As Activist Post previously reported, Article 13 is designed to make website owners responsible for the content that users post on their websites, effectively forcing website owners to move behind an upload filter to protect themselves against huge claims by copyright owners and agencies that work on their behalfs like the MPAA and RIAA. Article 11 is an even worse concept. That has been dubbed the “link tax” article; if passed, linking to any copyrighted material is taxed upon.
Anonymous, Pirates and other activists have created a live Google protests map for protesters to find a demonstration near them, which will be kept up to date with upcoming marches. Currently marches are scheduled for March 23rd; however, there may be earlier urgent demonstrations added to the maps updated at a later time.
#StopACTA2 has created an easy to use uncensored Google Map to view ALL protests against #Article11 and #Article13 on March 23. Please share it far and wide!#SaveYourInternet #SaveTheInternet #UploadFilter #AxelVoss #EU #CopyrightDirective #Anonymoushttps://t.co/g5b0jF3hbm
— Anonymous (@YourMarkLubbers) March 3, 2019
Anonymous and Pirates everywhere are calling on the general public to protest like never before and flood the streets of Europe to send a message — hands off our Internet, help Save Your Internet.
We urgently ask you to do everything in your power to support the StopACTA2 movement that is coordinated by the Polish StopACTA2 crew and the crew of Anonymous Worldwide and many others including Pirate Parties International with its co-chair Bailey Lamon and board member Raymond Johansen.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) warns that the proposed policies will increase censorship and surveillance throughout Europe creating a Stasi state. The digital rights organization specifically calls on people from Germany, Sweden, Poland, and Luxembourg, to speak out.
“Your national government depends on your goodwill to win the votes to continue its mandate. This is a rare moment in European lawmaking when local connections from citizens matter more than well-funded, international corporations,” EFF writes.
In December, a more than 4 million strong petition of Internet users and businesses was sent to the European Parliament calling for an end to the ACTA 2 proposals in the various Articles for “reforming digital copyright law.”
EFF notes that the petition was created because the law will inevitably lead to the creation of algorithmic copyright filters that only US Big Tech companies can afford (making the field less competitive and thus harder for working artists to negotiate better deals in) and because these filters will censor enormous quantities of legitimate material, thanks to inevitable algorithmic errors and abuse.
Share this article, organize together amongst one another and send a message, show the powers-that-be that the Internet belongs to the people and not the corporations or the power-hungry elites that seek to profit from the free sharing of information. Our efforts already seem to be having an effect as EPP is trying to deny plans for an early vote:
Hey @EPPGroup, does #Anonymous & #Pirates got your tongue? Now denying that you wanted to have an earlier vote?
At least if you are going to fuck people out of democracy admit it? #StopActa2 #SaveYourInternet #SaveOurInternt #SaveTheInternet #LinkTax #Uploadfilter pic.twitter.com/4B80jm2QrE
— ⒶK #Unity4J(₿) (@An0nAKn0wledge) March 4, 2019
On social media, supporters are using the following hashtags for digital protests — #stopACTA2, #CopyrightDirective, #SaveYourInternet, #SaveTheInternet, #SaveOurInternet #Article11, #Article13, #UploadFilters, #LinkTax, #Filternet, #ACTA2 #Anonymous.
Because #ACTA2 will make it so u have to be significantly rich to run a website blogs & independent journalism will vanish. Allowing govts & their contractor cronies to run amok & pass us off fake reports like the Downing St memo to invade countries. #StopActa2 #SaveYourInternet https://t.co/YCehnpWYzn
— ⒶK #Unity4J(₿) (@An0nAKn0wledge) February 13, 2019
Supporters of the fight against ACTA 2 include — wolnemedia, SoMee.Social, Bitchute, Presearch, blogmedia24, Anonymous Bites Back, wykop, polskapartiapiratow, Pirate Parties International, kontestacja, Hackread.com, inspro, Stowarzyszenie Libertarianskie, Anonymous Info Army Poland, and Anon Ops Poland according to the StopActa2.org website.
You can find out more information by visiting StopACTA2.org, a website being run to support operation Stop ACTA 2. The website will be kept up to date with a full list of the existing protest locations. Are you an experienced organizer who wants to help organize in Europe for protesting against ACTA 2? Then contact firstname.lastname@example.org for any information, or if you want to start your own protest. As this article details, the cards are stacked against European MEPs; the more presence they see from we the people, the further they might listen instead of passing a dual draconian Orwellian law that threatens Internet freedoms, as well as smaller independent publications.
Aaron Kesel writes for Activist Post. Support us at Patreon. Follow us on Minds, Steemit, SoMee, BitChute, Facebook and Twitter. Ready for solutions? Subscribe to our premium newsletter Counter Markets.