EU Parliament rejects opening copyright law update negotiations

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Strasbourg, July 5 (IANS) The European Parliament on Thursday voted against a proposal to open discussions on updating copyright laws, an overhaul that would have paved the way for copyright-holders gaining much stronger powers over their creations.

The Legal Affairs Committee had proposed that the EU modernize its copyright laws so they made more sense in the modern age, but critics said it would force websites to screen users’ posts for copyrighted content and would essentially silence large parts of the Internet, Efe news reported.

“We will now return to the matter in September for further consideration and attempt to address peoples’ concerns whilst bringing our copyright rules up to date with the modern digital environment,” said Axel Voss of the conservative European People’s Party.

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The proposal to begin negotiations was slammed by Internet companies of all sizes and was voted against by 318 lawmakers. Another 278 supported it and 31 abstained.

Under the suggested new laws, film producers could have reviews taken offline for showing brief clips of the movie and memes, gifs or simple screenshots of copyrighted content would disappear from the web.

–IANS

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