Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Censorship Media The Internet Your Rights Online

Italy Floats Official Permission Requirement for Web Video Uploads 131

Posted by timothy
from the state-v.-man dept.
An anonymous reader writes with some bad news from Italy, noting that new rules proposed there would "require people who upload videos onto the Internet to obtain authorization from the Communications Ministry similar to that required by television broadcasters, drastically reducing freedom to communicate over the Web." Understandably, some say such controls represent a conflict of interest for Silvio Berlusconi, "who exercises political control over the state broadcaster RAI in his role as prime minister and is also the owner of Italy's largest private broadcaster, Mediaset."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Italy Floats Official Permission Requirement for Web Video Uploads

Comments Filter:
  • Italian Booty (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Blasphemy (78348) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @06:10PM (#30793580)

    I get the distinct impression will be seeing a surge in Italian YouTube videos with a "Screw you, Berlusconi" theme.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by geegel (1587009)

      That or the sale of small metallic cathedral replicas will really take off.

    • The guy is going to be drummed out of office anyways. He's become a laughing stock in Italy and in Europe. Not just a laughing stock, a dirty old laughing stock.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by omb (759389)
        No he isn't, Things play differently in Italy, and

        BTW he is one of the most successful, post WW 2, Italian leaders. I very much doubt he will be out anytime soon.
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          Unfortunately, that is an awfully low bar...
        • by Fred_A (10934)

          BTW he is one of the most successful, post WW 2, Italian leaders.

          Successful at what ?

          You don't evaluate success by the number of underage bimbos you screw, sneak into your government or by the number of trials you weasel your way out of while claiming it's all the fault of the "red judges" and the "communist press" (aka. newspapers he doesn't own).

          Italy is going down the drain at such a speed that it's dizzying to watch.

          • BTW he is one of the most successful, post WW 2, Italian leaders.

            Successful at what ?

            You don't evaluate success by the number of underage bimbos you screw, sneak into your government or by the number of trials you weasel your way out of while claiming it's all the fault of the "red judges" and the "communist press" (aka. newspapers he doesn't own).

            Italy is going down the drain at such a speed that it's dizzying to watch.

            Succesfull politically, i.e. at getting votes, which is the only metric that matters for a politician. At the end of the day it doesn't really matter how lousy Berlusconi is at his job because apparently the (largely xenophobic) Italian populace doesn't really care.

          • by m2f2 (1420929)
            Mr.B is a rootkit that flashed 30M people BIOS with its own propaganda. As Linux deployment in Italy is very low, it spread wildly. Don't underestimate the value of a good antivirus program when running stupid OSes on your brain. Sad sad sad
  • That's insane (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PenisLands (930247) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @06:11PM (#30793594) Homepage Journal
    That's horrific. An extremely oppressive requirement. I expect that anyone who disagrees with Silvio will be denied permission to upload anything. This is also impractical, because you can't expect every single citizen to apply for permission just to post videos of their cat onto youtube.

    Thankfully, I think that this could be circumvented easily, by transferring video files to another country in an encrypted form, then getting friends in the other country to unencrypt and upload it for you.
    • by Colin Smith (2679) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @06:33PM (#30793816)

      Thankfully, I think that this could be circumvented easily, by transferring video files to another country in an encrypted form, then getting friends in the other country to unencrypt and upload it for you.

      You've never mentioned the word "encryption" in casual conversation with non I.T. related friends and relatives?

       

      • You've never mentioned the word "encryption" in casual conversation with non I.T. related friends and relatives?

        "Of course you couldn't read it; it's encrypted."
        "What's that?"
        "Encrypted means I sent it in a secret code so that other people can't read it. The difference between regular e-mail and encrypted e-mail is like the difference between a postcard and a sealed security envelope. Encryption helps keep your personal information private. I'll help you set up a program on your computer so that you can read encrypted mail sent to you and make your own encrypted mail to send to other people. What program do you nor

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Narpak (961733)

      This is also impractical, because you can't expect every single citizen to apply for permission just to post videos of their cat onto youtube.

      Indeed. One thing that could kill such a policy quickly is the huge number of people applying for permission for all sorts of material would swamp the institution. But seriously the oppressiveness of such a policy seems excessive; even for Italy. And to make this have any sort of effect at all they would have to block all access to foreign sites since they would continue to upload more or less whatever they would wish.

      • by mdwh2 (535323)

        I don't know about Italy, but here in the UK, video/film producers have to pay for the privilege of being censored by the BBFC (thankfully it doesn't apply to Internet uploads though ... yet). So they could easily get round that problem by charging a fee.

        Even if it is free, swamping it would just leave a massive backlog, meaning that content would take ages to be approved. Although I can see the idea could work from a protest point of view of showing how bad the system is.

    • Re:That's insane (Score:4, Interesting)

      by DMiax (915735) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @07:22PM (#30794268)
      No need to circumvent for private individuals, fortunately. Our government is sloppy and has not thought of a single way to enforce this. It will be used against competitors to Berlusconi's TVs and against Murdoch's Sky, which is in the scope of the bill. Not that it is so much better...
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Hurricane78 (562437)

      No. You know how it will be circumvented?
      By about 60 million people just not caring.
      Or is there even a single person there who still does not think and say fuck Berlusconi at every chance he can get? ^^

      Of course, Italians are a bit like we here in Germany: The broad majority of the people, including the military, the police, and other state workers, might agree that they strongly disagree with something. And they might even know that they all agree. Yet they still cave in and fear a teeny tiny group of assh

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by sopssa (1498795) *

        No. You know how it will be circumvented?
        By about 60 million people just not caring.

        That doesn't really help. No, they won't be enforcing and punishing everyone. But they will target specific persons with it to silent and shut them down.

      • by donstenk (74880)

        The majority of the people here in the south (Tropea, it's glorious) are pro-Berlusconi. In fact, in Sicily he got 120% of the vote initially. That's why now they will be getting the bridge. Lot's of concrete paid for by the state, and concrete == mafia (who helped obtain the extra % vote but underestimated the man's real popularity).

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Kikuchi (1709032)
      I think people who uploads videos of their cat on youtube aren't the one who gonna be affected by this law. Italian government obviously doesn't intend to apply this law thoroughly but rather pop it out from nowhere when they'll need to apply censure.
    • This is exactly the reason the USA has a constitution. It limits the power of government, so that if Congress ever tried to do something that boneheaded here, the Supreme Court would just strike it down.
    • by mikael (484)

      And in other news ... sales of memory sticks, external USB drives and blank DVD's have suddenly skyrocketed along with the use of 'secure-ftp'.

    • by rtb61 (674572)

      Fortunately it is also a idiot's doomed 'FAIL', video phone calls over VOIP any one, literally millions of videos being uploaded to the internet all the time. Even if that were not the issue, how many people would need to be paid to view all those videos, each and every submission. Let me guess what also will be part of the lie, a two stream approval process. One for companies which corrupt Italian politicians have a financial interests in who get approvals free and another for the general public who must

    • by u38cg (607297)
      I suspect the quickest way to circumvent it would simply be to follow the law and deluge the authorities with several million videos of kittens chasing laser pointers.
    • by Frankie70 (803801)

      Thankfully, I think that this could be circumvented easily, by transferring video files to another country in an encrypted form, then getting friends in the other country to unencrypt and upload it for you

      Italy Floats Official Permission Requirement for sending stuff in encrypted form - Slashdot headlines few months down the line.

  • by negRo_slim (636783) <mils_oRgen@hotmail.com> on Saturday January 16, 2010 @06:11PM (#30793604)
    It's things like this that make me lament the US giving up any shred of control of the Internet and related systems to the international community.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by omglolbah (731566)

      Yup, not like the DMCA causes problems on the net...

      Or American businesses bullying other countries or generally making a mess of things.

      The US has plenty of their own shit to fix before yelling at anyone else :-p

      • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Yea, we have shit to fix, but be fair. It's nowhere near as bad as this bullshit in Italy, or even 99% of the rest of the world.

      • by Artraze (600366)

        Honestly, the DMCA is the best thing to happen to the net. Why? Because instead of everyone suing everyone for everything, it provides a fair method of resolving disputes... How nice is it that the plaintiff has to make a statement under penalty of perjury that you need to take something down, and also provides a formal way to refute the request? What would you prefer? The RIAA method of threatening to sue and just hoping people settle?

        Granted, the fact that the DMCA gives DRM the force of law (among a

        • by russotto (537200)

          Honestly, the DMCA is the best thing to happen to the net. Why? Because instead of everyone suing everyone for everything, it provides a fair method of resolving disputes...

          Fair? Because the DMCA I know of, the "method of resolving disputes is:

          1) Complaintant makes a complaint
          2) Work is taken down.
          99% of the time, dispute resolved. Not so fair, IMO. But that's a bit unfair to the DMCA, because there is the option of

          1) Complaintant makes a complaint
          2) Work is taken down
          3) Respondent agrees to meet complai

        • When is the last time you saw a DMCA complainant found guilty of perjury? In legal circles, this is considered a nuclear weapon, and the Judges rarely if ever find anyone guilty. Instead we get defenses such that "it was an honest mistake!" and the weasels live on to sue another day. No the DMCA is one of the *worst* things to happen to the net. The rarity in which a perjury charge sticks allows the weasels to issue takedown notices with little regard for consequences. How else would you justify a take dow
    • Now that Italy has come up with this idea I'm worried.

      Someone in the group crafting the secret ACTA Treaty (http://eff.org) may see this and incorporate it into the damn treaty unless it's formalized!
      (Hard for me to know since it's all secret.)

      And if the US public cannot find a way to stop the treaty we will end up forced to implement this in US law.

      And wouldn't that be nice?

      (Of course we have Obama, the RIAA and the MPAA to thank for all this).

  • by Extremus (1043274) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @06:19PM (#30793674)
    Some time ago, they tried something similar [slashdot.org] with blogs.
  • Amazing, bread and circuses, it still works after 2000+ years.

    It may become time to end the secret ballot. Else we keep getting people like this elected because people vote for their wallets thinking everyone else will save their freedom.

    Democracy is the worsed system except for all the others is a common bit of dogma, I think it has made us lazy. Keep us from trying to find something better. Because democracy sure as hell doesn't seem to be working anymore.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by couchslug (175151)

      They vote for him, thus they get what they want and deserve.

      Democracy works that way, and people are not entitled to good outcomes when they make stupid decisions.

      • They vote for him, thus they get what they want and deserve.

        Except--and this is a really critical point, many (probably nearly half) of the people did nothing of the sort! Why should they live under an oppressive ruler who they did not vote for?

        • by ShakaUVM (157947)

          >>Except--and this is a really critical point, many (probably nearly half) of the people did nothing of the sort! Why should they live under an oppressive ruler who they did not vote for?

          Democracy is a terrible system of government, except all the others

          • Agreed, but when somebody in a democracy is having their rightful liberties trampled, even if it's within the law, dismissing the problem as "well, they voted for it" is fallacious. It's a tyranny of the majority, and it some ways that's worse than a dictatorship.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by orzetto (545509)

        In the present Italian electoral system, about 2-3 people decide who will be a candidate for parliament (party leaders). Voters can only choose between parties, not single candidates. Add to that the fact that the "opposition" of Italy's Democratic Party is ludicrously weak (and, I suspect, several of its leaders are on Berlusconi's payroll). Whenever the present opposition was in power, they always "forgot" to pass laws to either strip Berlusconi of his media empire, or to ban him out of politics until he

        • by Hadlock (143607)

          This is how it works in the US as well, its just that we happen to have the formality of presidential primaries. The cannidates are largely chosen and supported by the party. Technically we have write-ins but those rarely, if ever work.

          • Well, what the GP was referring is worse: it's not about the presidential candidate but the representative itself.

            It used to be that you could choose who to vote out of a party list or leave it blank and let your vote default to the top; now it's not possible to specify a name any more, so only those on top of the list get elected. Who is in the list and the order of these is determined by the parties (and their internal squabbles and power games).

            This was called porcellum, pig-latin (one couldn't expect mo

      • by eaman (710548)

        Democracy works as long as you can chose who to vote for, and you have means to chose between differents candidates based on facts of your interests.

        In the latest years in Italy citizens have lost the right to choose who to elect, as the very same politics choose who can be elected, and small parties are automatically left out of parliament. If you are not part of the system you just don't get any space in TV (80% of electors base they votes on TV programs), or as soon as you do anything to gain attention y

      • by selven (1556643)

        And the 53.19% of the population that didn't vote for him? What do they deserve?

    • by cpscotti (1032676)

      Amazing, bread and circuses, it still works after 2000+ years.

      Precisely.. it's just that it evolved into pasta and soccer.
      ps: I'm temporarily living in Italy and most Italians seem to be unaware or such things...
      Well.. every bar or Italian's house I get into has a tv with Mediaset (Berslusconi's privately owned network) on..
      Italy REALLY looks like "Citizen Kane meets The Godfather"..

    • by DMiax (915735)
      What makes you think that in this semi-dictatorship a public ballot will make the votes for Berlusconi *decrease*?
    • by John Hasler (414242) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @09:16PM (#30795064) Homepage

      > Democracy is the worst system except for all the others...

      Which is a good reason to have as little democracy as possible and none of anything else.

  • What did some one do upload a video of some one getting beat up buy the cops for not paying a bribe?

  • from the country that invented it! But I doubt it will fly with the people. They would recognize it.. No?
    • by TeXMaster (593524)

      from the country that invented it! But I doubt it will fly with the people. They would recognize it.. No?

      Sadly, many of us aren't able to. OTOH, since the principal news sources are under Berlusconi's control, how would they ever even realize what's really happening?

    • by couchslug (175151)

      Let's remember why Mussolini was so popular (among other things, he had the will to attack the Mafia with harsh methods) and why the Italian people fought on the side of the Axis. Seeing him through the lens of Allied propaganda is not accurate.

      Being beaten then opportunistically switching sides in 1943 isn't quite the same thing as a profound social repudiation of Fascism. Those who were on the Left never liked it, but it was quite compatible with the rest of Italian society including the Vatican, whose (a

  • by gmuslera (3436) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @06:54PM (#30794028) Homepage Journal
    p2p will be a problem, even if what is being transfered is legal. What if i.e. a linux distribution includes a package with demo video of something... that linux distribution will be forbidden to be transfered using bittorrent or required a bunch of permissions for that?

    Same with videochat, i.e. skype, googletalk and others.

    Wonder if the selling of webcams will have some kind of requirement, like signing something. Because with this you will not be able to turn them on without getting a permission.
    • by eaman (710548)

      Italy politics are very found of privacy: as in no web cams, no data should be saved, no telephones conversatin shoud be intercepted.

      Then you have most of the mesia system in the very hands of the government, so they don't like newcomers.

  • So whats next? Having to get permission to type a paragraph? To post in forums? To update Facebook? To post on Twitter?
  • by stimpleton (732392) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @07:26PM (#30794308)
    On YouTube is a regular poster. He drives around on his farm and does crazy things in cars. Jumping over things etc. Friends come over and do the same. They post the videos to YouTube.

    Local authoritys have said he needs a "Movie Studios Licence". His property have been raided. He currently is posting videos from his house mostly these days.

    I should add he has a conviction of a sexual nature against a child back in the 80's, so the motivation of autorities might be on that.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/Davidsfarm [youtube.com]
    • by Mashiki (184564)

      Living in Canada and having posted video's to youtube, I see no such people showing up at my door. I've done video's from my hometown, of London, Ont. And a bunch of stuff on Toronto, Ont and Hamilton, Ont. No one is showing up. I'm going to guess that his prior conviction for whatever he did against kids is the reason. In Canada if you're actually guilty of such stuff, we do keep relatively good tabs on people for things like that even if you have the right to privacy; and your neighbours aren't allow

  • To move to his apparent favorite country, the People's Republic of China. He'd love to see his utopia in practice, I'm sure.

    • by eaman (710548)

      Actually he's Putin best buddy (when Berlusconi was elected last time he just disappear for a couple of days to celebrate with Putin in Sardegna as private jets took of the TV starlets to they amusement: Putin is well known for having donate to B. a gorgeus bid bed).

      But second choice would be Mu'ammar Gheddafi, dictator of Libia, where he goes quite often embarrassing Italy (this year he sent the national acrobatic air patrol to Libia to celebrate the anniversary of the dictator: the "air force" refused to

  • Anyone have an alabaster model of Milan cathedral handy?

  • How exactly would they enforce this? At best he can force Italian ISPs to comply, which could be circumvented by simply having a decent enough proxy outside Italian borders, or just sending files to users in other countries. I'd also hate to see how these licenses were handled- on a computer basis, in which ISPs authorize individual accounts? The entire idea simply seems absurd and unworkable.

    On another note, IANAL, but would this in any way conflict with any European Union laws regarding freedom of spee

    • Re:Enforcement? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by John Hasler (414242) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @09:27PM (#30795114) Homepage

      > How exactly would they enforce this?

      Selectively, of course. That's the whole point of such laws.

    • by chiui (1120973)

      How exactly would they enforce this?

      You don't know how things works in Italy. The government makes random laws and never think how to enforce them. The result is that there are plenty of laws which are never enforced. And do you know how they fix this? They make more laws :)

    • by eaman (710548)

      They just won't: they don't even bother to know how the internet thing works, they probably would throw some millions of public money to a "thrusted friend" of the governament just to show that they invest on the net in behalf of the Italian population.

      Obviously such a ting would never work, so they can blame the internet thing forever (the only media they don't control) and ask to remove whatever they don't like from time to time without any criteria.

  • by The Wild Norseman (1404891) <tw@norseman.gmail@com> on Sunday January 17, 2010 @12:15AM (#30795954)

    He'd better be careful otherwise he could wake up with an ASCII horse's head in his email inbox.

    Push the Italians too far and see what happens!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 17, 2010 @04:52AM (#30796830)

    i'm italian. posting AC for obvious reasons.
    i can tell you that's funny that they are now seeking for an authorization for internet's videos "similar to that required by television broadcasters" when one of the three tv channel of berlusconi himself doesn't have the permission to broadcast. in fact, that channel is illegally occupying frequencies already assigned to a new competitor in the italian's tv market that can't broadcast because of this. i'm not so much up to date, but the European Union (god bless them to try something against our dictator) already gave us a multi-million euros fine for that.

    just for the record, the italian tv system look like this:
    analog transmission: 3 public channels (controlled by the parliament, so by mr. berlusconi) with an average 50% share, 3 berlusconi channels with an average 45% share, and 2 channel owned by the local telco giant (about 5%), one of which broadcast the local mtv.
    dvb-t: still not everywhere in italy. 3-4 more public channels, other 2 free-to-air and 10 pay-per-view of berlusconi, 1 of murdoch's sky, bbc world, france 24, and almost nothing else apart from a couple of local tv stations airing mainly commercials.
    satellite: only murdoch himself. also, if you count that the average income is 1200-1300€/month and the cost for the subscription to the satellite tv is from 45€/month, you understand that the average joe can't afford this.

    and remember: when you say that mr. berlusconi was elected so is how democracy works and bla bla bla, keep in mind this fact: when you sum up his control over the televisions and the control over the press (where he controls different newspapers and magazines directly and a lot more indirectly, mainly by _controlling the advertising_) you know how is it possible that a man bound with mafia can win an election. the majority of people in italy are brainwashed and for them is ok that a man had a mafia killer as groom (vittorio mangano) and as co-founder of his party a man strictly tied with mafia (a mafioso himself, i would say: marcello dell'utri). note: berlusconi and dell'utri said that vittorio mangano was a "HERO", long after he died and where everything about him was know. YES! they said that a mafioso killer is a HERO!

    also, berlusconi did some illegal wiretapping with men at the lead of the our telco giant (the one with the others two tv channels :blink-blink:) and now he pose the state secret on that stuff so they can't prosecute him or the men that did this for him.

    if you count that a lot of opposition to berlusconi comes from the video blogs of beppe grillo, marco travaglio, piero ricca and others, you understand how much in trouble we are. (well, actually they go against everybody, but berlusconi is so dominant in the italian scenario that he takes 90% of the time)

    now, can you understand that Italy is FUBAR?

    • Nice summary... the crackdown on internet will gain momentum now that online opposition is coming out of the background noise and becoming visible: Il Popolo Viola [ilpopoloviola.it] (organizers of the No B Day)

  • by koan (80826)

    Benito would approve.

An optimist believes we live in the best world possible; a pessimist fears this is true.

Working...