Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
The Internet Censorship EU Government The Courts Technology

European Court of Justice To Outlaw Net Filtering 171

Posted by timothy
from the soon-only-outlaws-will-have-filters dept.
jrepin writes "Today, the European Court of Justice gave a preliminary opinion that will have far-reaching implications in the fight against overaggressive copyright monopoly abusers. It is not a final verdict, but the advocate general's position; the Court generally follows this. The Advocate Generals says that no ISP can be required to filter the Internet, and particularly not to enforce the copyright monopoly."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

European Court of Justice To Outlaw Net Filtering

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Too much money riding on it. Corporations will win. Always.
    • by WrongSizeGlass (838941) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @01:39PM (#35819832)

      Corporations will win. Always.

      FTFS:

      no ISP can be required to filter the Internet

      Well it does say can be required to, that doesn't mean they can't be convinced, paid, or otherwise motivated to filter the Internet.

      • by causality (777677)

        Corporations will win. Always.

        FTFS:

        no ISP can be required to filter the Internet

        Well it does say can be required to, that doesn't mean they can't be convinced, paid, or otherwise motivated to filter the Internet.

        Europe can always take a page from the US's playbook: the next time there's something to be remotely afraid of, it can be declared their "patriotic duty" to filter, monitor, etc. That can be done without passing a single law.

        • by Zironic (1112127)

          Europe doesn't have that particular flavor of patriotism.

          • by ByOhTek (1181381)

            For that matter, neither does most of the US.

            • by causality (777677)

              For that matter, neither does most of the US.

              You nailed it. The US doesn't but the media can be absolutely convincing that it does. They only need to beat the drums of patriotism and focus on press releases made by the government since they are "official sources". They are unlikely to delve too deeply into whether that's really representative of the rest of the population. They're too busy defining a convenient norm that sells advertising.

              • Again, that will not work in Europe. Patriotism died with the second world war, I think, or maybe the 60's.

                Kiddie porn, on the other hand, will work just dandidly :/

                • Europe is just as patriotic (and nationalistic) as anyone else, they are just more subtle. American "patriots" go around saying "gawd bless uh-merika", Europeans are patriotic by going on the internet and having huge circlejerks where they discuss just how barbaric other countries (usually the US) are and how Europe is the height of human culture. They also have a huge NOT_INVENTED_HERE complex, especially France.
        • Europe isn't a country though - it's a collection of countries all with very different notions of patriotism.

      • by fearlezz (594718) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:12PM (#35820224) Homepage

        Well it does say can be required to, that doesn't mean they can't be convinced, paid, or otherwise motivated to filter the Internet.

        Indeed.

        Falkvinge.net says the exact opposite of what I read dozens of times today. All articles I read today say that that very same advocate general, mister Cruz Villalón, said that if individual countries make laws requiring ISPs to filter the web, there's nothing the EU can/will do. Only without those local laws, it would be illegal.

        Some of my sources:
        Translation of tweakers.net [google.nl]
        Translation of nu.nl [google.nl]

      • The corporations don't want to filter the internet. It's just hassle and pain.

        They may well bow to government pressure to do so if it looks like less pain than the threatened alternative - but this strengthens their hand.

    • Too much money riding on it. Corporations will win. Always

      Aren't ISPs corporations too?

    • by ron_ivi (607351) <sdotnoNO@SPAMcheapcomplexdevices.com> on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:32PM (#35820456)

      Those who charge for bandwidth love piracy - since if the cost of the content goes to zero, all the profit in home-viewing of movies will go to the telcom companies & ISPs.

      Also, telcom companies are known to be at least as skilled and powerful at lobbying than the copyright groups.

      And the last thing ISPs want is to start having to filter content and therefore potentially become legally responsible for every wikileak and drug deal done through their network.

      It'll be an interesting fight.

      • Those who charge for bandwidth love piracy - since if the cost of the content goes to zero, all the profit in home-viewing of movies will go to the telcom companies & ISPs.

        I don't think you're thinking this through. ISPs generally don't like P2P because they don't get to charge both ends -- they get money from the "consumers" but they don't get to charge the "producers". Why do you think Comcast wanted to throttle BitTorrent, instead of just letting customers hit their caps and whacking them with ridiculous fees? It's because they'd much rather you use Netflix, so that they can charge Netflix for bandwidth and let customers hit their caps and whack them with ridiculous fees.

  • by ilsaloving (1534307) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @01:36PM (#35819800)

    You can bet the Copywrite lobby will fight this tooth and nail. After all, their yacht payme^H^H^H^H^^H^H^H^H^H^H^H artists livelihoods are at stake!

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I hate the RIAA and their methods as much as anyone, but I don't think it is spurious to look at what's happened to the music industry in the last 15 years or so and say that the internet has not had a negative effect.

      It will have a continuing negative effect on revenue - not that I care how much EMI makes, but I do care when by extension there is less money available to sign artists, promote music that is not currently mainstream, when lower quality music receives all the promotion dollars available from t

      • by KlomDark (6370) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @01:48PM (#35819920) Homepage Journal

        Nah, people just have to get it through their heads that they will have to do it themselves instead of expecting someone else to do it for them. A full 24-bit digital recording studio that beats anything that was available to Pink Floyd, The Beatles, or Zeppelin will cost you only a few hundred dollars these days. Less than a good drum set. Stop whining and get to work on it.

        • Anyone can walk into a music shop and buy a Les Paul too, but that doesn't mean they can produce material anywhere near the quality of Jimmy Page. A tool means nothing without knowledge.

          The quality of recording facilities does matter. The quality of those engineering, mixing, and producing does matter. The quality of session players available does matter.

          "So, use a computer - dummy" has very little to do with it.

          • by ElectricTurtle (1171201) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:10PM (#35820192)
            You're conflating a lot things here. Talent is the first and last key to art, and can overcome inferior tools and distribution. However talent is singular, and cannot be bought or taught. At a certain point the quality of tools reaches a sort of "Monster Cables" level of diminishing returns. Truly good music will sound amazing whether it is recorded and produced in a high budget studio with a stupidly huge team or if it is recorded with a few hundred bucks worth of mid-grade hobbyist equipment and the artists themselves. Really expensive tools and teams can make talentless douchebags sound good, that's the whole pop music industry in a nutshell, but people with talent remain so even with inferior equipment.
            • You're conflating a lot things here. Talent is the first and last key to art, and can overcome inferior tools and distribution. However talent is singular, and cannot be bought or taught. At a certain point the quality of tools reaches a sort of "Monster Cables" level of diminishing returns. Truly good music will sound amazing whether it is recorded and produced in a high budget studio with a stupidly huge team or if it is recorded with a few hundred bucks worth of mid-grade hobbyist equipment and the artists themselves. Really expensive tools and teams can make talentless douchebags sound good, that's the whole pop music industry in a nutshell, but people with talent remain so even with inferior equipment.

              That is very true. Let's assume for the sake of argument that that high budget studio is an absolute requirement for the production of good music (it's not.) Let's further assume that artists still need expensive advertising campaigns (they don't) or radio airplay (not anymore) to promote and sell their music. That still would not justify the incredible overhead of the big music studios, their profiteering, and the societal and legal damage they and their corrupt "trade organizations" are causing the world

              • by h4rm0ny (722443)

                However talent is singular, and cannot be bought or taught

                I've yet to meet a really good musician who wasn't taught their skills by other musicians. Perhaps one or two self-taught types are out there and are a success story. The rest all got taught. Often those lessons were paid for.

                • However talent is singular, and cannot be bought or taught

                  I've yet to meet a really good musician who wasn't taught their skills by other musicians. Perhaps one or two self-taught types are out there and are a success story. The rest all got taught. Often those lessons were paid for.

                  I think you were replying to ElectricTurtle.

            • Pop music is an animal unto itself and really isn't music in the same sense. I don't think it's useful to say that "computerization can make anyone sound good" - while that might be true for a pop singer who only ever sings to backing tracks, it's not really what I mean by "music". (and they finance real music, so it's ok with me)

              I know you say that amazing music will sound amazing even if it's recorded in a toolshed, but this really isn't the case. You can go find quotes from the band, but you mentioned Pi

              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                by Kongming (448396)
                I must strongly disagree with the idea that "real music" will suffer without highly profitable major record labels to promote it. The major record labels have long been more interested in spending promotional dollars on pop acts than on anyone doing anything innovative. With the self-promotion opportunities that the Internet provides, I have been able to find (and purchase music from) dozens of truly excellent artists that I would never have been able to find under the old model. Even aside from the concent
              • by AmonTheMetalhead (1277044) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:16PM (#35820912)
                You know what's making the real music suffer? Not the internet, but large retail chains that only stock the popular shit and out compete the smaller record stores that actually have lesser known works. The whole industry was set to fail sooner or later, the internet did nothing to change that. If you are a budding artist, embrace things like last.fm, those are the future.
            • by Maclir (33773)

              Talent is the first and last key to art, ... and cannot be bought or taught.

              You clearly havn't been watching shows like "American Idol".

          • For every realized brilliant engineer/mixer/producer, there are more, possibly many more, unrealized ones. In the days when TV studios were building-sized, you needed to work for years to gain access to one to tell your story. Then camcorders, webcams, and youtube happened, and while 99% of what's on there is crap, 1% of it is brilliant work from people who could never have gained access to the big studios. That 1% represents a two or five or tenfold increase in the amount of smart/clever/funny/important vi

        • Plus he can sell his music DRM-free and at a low price (killing the incentive to pirate), and take all the profit for himself. 100% of $5-$10 is better than 3-20% of $20-$30*

          *Yes I know there are certain values of that for which it isn't true, but you won't get anywhere near a 20% cut unless you're a chart-topping legendary megasuperstar.

          • by TubeSteak (669689) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:58PM (#35820710) Journal

            100% of $5-$10 is better than 3-20% of $20-$30*

            As a lot of people selling games, e-books, music, and movies have found out,
            100% of $1-$2 is better than 100% of $5-$10.
            It turns out you really can make it up on volume.

          • by brit74 (831798)
            > "Plus he can sell his music DRM-free and at a low price (killing the incentive to pirate)"
            To be fair, any price above $0 is an incentive to pirate. I know people who, because they learned how to pirate, regard paying any money for anything digital as the equivalent of throwing money in the trash.
        • The recording media (the computer) is cheap/software But are you seriously of the opinion that you can build a room like Abbey Road has, buy the microphones that the beatles used (or even comparable microphones), and the gear (amps, instruments) that they used? Heck, even buying an interface with as many mic-preamps as would be needed to duplicate the recording conditions of the beatles costs more than a few hundred dollars. Not to mention that the speakers you'll need to even know what the hell it is you'r

          • by mikael_j (106439)

            Sure, you will need to make an investment. However, if you make the right investment then $3,000 spent on the right home studio gear today, combined with someone with talent to handle it, will take you a lot further than $30,000 out of the money the label promised you. Remember, your buddy who's doing this as a favor/because it's good practice/because you're buying him pizza isn't billing you hundreds of dollars per hour for labor and hundreds of dollars per hour for "equipment rental" and similar shenaniga

      • by CRCulver (715279)

        I just don't think some of the greatest records would have ever been recorded in the current and future system.

        I listen to a lot of jazz and classical music. So much of the great recordings in these genres were produced by state arts subsidies, private patronage, or recording labels subsidizing their many less popular acts by their handful of big successes. Even if very few people were expected to go out and pay for these recordings, they still got made for decades and decades. There's no reason that can'

      • by 0123456 (636235) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @01:58PM (#35820040)

        I hate the RIAA and their methods as much as anyone, but I don't think it is spurious to look at what's happened to the music industry in the last 15 years or so and say that the internet has not had a negative effect.

        I suspect it's had far less of a negative effect than replacing musicians with manufactured bands designed by marketers.

        • When the music labels came in, and the unions came in, the big bands vanished. That big band sound, like the Brian Setzer Orchestra and all, just went away. Losing all this shit will give us back our god damn culture.
        • Labels manufacture boy bands and it-girls because they sell. While nobody is under any delusions that Justin Bieber will be around in 20 years, at least his vapid music/coasters end up funding the enterprise that sets actual musicians up with studio time, airplay, engineers, producers, etc.

          All I am saying to /. is that this problem is more complicated than "label it and kill it" / "record industry = evil". The record industry has done both good and evil. If it disappears, some evil disappears but some good

      • by mikael_j (106439) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @01:59PM (#35820046)

        I'm an amateur musician, but among the semi-professionals I know no one has any delusions about breaking into the music industry anymore. It's really changed the landscape because the industry itself has shrunk dramatically.

        Got any numbers to back up your claims that the music industry has "shrunk dramatically"?

        From what I've seen with people I know it definitely seems that if anything for amateur/semi-pro musicians the possibilities have grown. At least this is true for those who have ambitions beyond "playing covers in local bars".

        Fifteen years ago if you produced and pressed your own album in a small run you were considered a nobody (didn't matter if it was 5,000 copies, you still weren't as "pro" as the guy with a minor record deal who's first album fizzled and who's second album release only involved 500 copies so the label would fulfill it's contractual obligations). These days there's no shame in it, if anything "I don't want to be screwed over by the labels" is a perfectly valid reason rather than a lame excuse (as it used to be).

        Fifteen years ago if you gave your music away for free (be it online or as actual CDs) that meant nothing, it probably would've gotten people talking about how you were trying to game the charts by claiming the albums as sales. These days it's ok to put up a website to share your music (perhaps with a link to iTunes for those who want to pay for it).

        Fifteen years ago the only real chance you had of making a video that ended up getting seen by 100,000 viewers was a record deal and letting the studio bring in their pros to create your video (taking the cost of this out of the money they were going to pay you). These days you can get that many viewers if you have a good band, a friend with a HD cam or a DSLR and another friend who's kind of good with FCP or Premiere (just film a few shows, get a little more material to match the mood of the song, edit and upload to youtube).

        • "These days you can get that many viewers if you have a good band, a friend with a HD cam or a DSLR and another friend who's kind of good with FCP or Premiere (just film a few shows, get a little more material to match the mood of the song, edit and upload to youtube)."

          If only producing things at the production quality people expect in music they pay money for were just as "you + computer, viola" as Slashdot believes...

          • "These days you can get that many viewers if you have a good band, a friend with a HD cam or a DSLR and another friend who's kind of good with FCP or Premiere (just film a few shows, get a little more material to match the mood of the song, edit and upload to youtube)."

            If only producing things at the production quality people expect in music they pay money for were just as "you + computer, viola" as Slashdot believes...

            It's not. But neither is the expense of hiring a couple of pros to do some of the work so high that it justifies the existence of the record labels. The big labels are criminal organizations that should have been disbanded decades ago.

          • by a_n_d_e_r_s (136412) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:30PM (#35820432) Homepage Journal

            It basically is - just listen to Friday by Rebecca Black:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CD2LRROpph0 [youtube.com]

            The cost of making music that the masses listen too are not very expensiv.

            With 101 miljon viewers on youtube its a huge viral success that many 'commercial' artist can only dream about.

            • Having 101 million viewers doesn't mean that the viewers actually liked it.

              Somebody posted it on facebook with a comment about how "I can't believe kids actually listen to this crap", which showed up in my news feed. I watched it. My overall reaction was something along the lines of "well... if you try to ignore the lyrics, her voice, and the video, it's actually almost bearable."

              • by brit74 (831798)

                Having 101 million viewers doesn't mean that the viewers actually liked it. Somebody posted it on facebook with a comment about how "I can't believe kids actually listen to this crap", which showed up in my news feed. I watched it. My overall reaction was something along the lines of "well... if you try to ignore the lyrics, her voice, and the video, it's actually almost bearable."

                Indeed. Here's what YouTube says: 267,472 likes, 2,041,843 dislikes. That's the most skewed ratio of likes to dislikes I've

            • And it's actually crap, go figure :P
          • by Rary (566291) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:32PM (#35820460)

            If only producing things at the production quality people expect in music they pay money for were just as "you + computer, viola" as Slashdot believes...

            Who said anything about needing a viola? ;)

            But seriously, you obviously need talent, and it definitely helps to surround yourself with other people who have talent (other musicians, audio engineers, etc). The thing is, there are lots of amateurs with talent in those areas. The Internet provides a means to connect with them, modern technology provides the ability for those without too much money to create content, and the WWW provides the ability to distribute. It's not a perfect system, but honestly, a decently talented amateur musician nowadays has a much better chance of becoming known online, at least enough to subsidize their efforts, maybe even make an honest living out of it, than they ever had before when their only hope was to get "discovered" by some elusive record company exec who'll promise them zillions of dollars and all the girls they can screw, only to turn around and screw them from the get-go.

            I'm an amateur musician as well, and I used to be a professional musician (independent, mind you), and I'm quite enjoying watching the music industry crumble. I do think that society has shifted to a mindset that really doesn't value content highly (monetarily speaking), but I'm not convinced that's entirely a bad thing. On the other hand, I'm also not convinced that that in any way prevents artists from being able to make a living. It might spell the end of the mega-rich superstar, but that's not something I'll mourn the loss of.

          • It is, I know bands who've done it, I've even helped some doing it. You just don't need the big labels anymore, they are OBSOLETE
        • by brit74 (831798)
          This article shows the decline of music sales - from a peak of around $17 billion or $71/year per capita in 1999 to around $8 billion or $26/year per capita in 2009.
          http://www.businessinsider.com/these-charts-explain-the-real-death-of-the-music-industry-2011-2 [businessinsider.com]

          Now, of course, the "music industry" isn't just recorded music. It's also concerts, and those have been rising, right? Yes, but certainly not enough to makeup for the shortfall. According to this paper (http://www.nber.org/papers/w16507.pdf), th
      • How can the current and future system have been prohibitive of past achievements if anybody can record and release themselves? I think you're in denial. Yes, the "record album" paradigm is dead, and rightfully. Now there is no magical middleman prerequisite to distribution. In that there can be no loss.
      • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:29PM (#35820426)

        I don't think it is spurious to look at what's happened to the music industry in the last 15 years or so and say that the internet has not had a negative effect.

        Nor would it be unfair to look at what has happened to the film camera industry in the last 15 years or so, and say that digital cameras have a negative effect on that industry. Likewise with the typewriter manufacturing industry.

        The moral of the story is this: adapt or die. Adapt to new business challenges and conditions. This is what the music industry has had trouble with for over a hundred years now. Player pianos, phonograph records, AM radio, FM radio, tape recorders, MP3 and digital music formats, and the Internet have all been labelled as technologies that are killing the music industry. In each case, the music industry eventually relented, adapted, and saw higher profits than they had earlier.

        Nobody feels any sympathy for businesses that fail to adapt to changes in the market and in technology. Especially not when those businesses have a history of abusing the legal system and trying to bankrupt college students.

      • I hate the RIAA and their methods as much as anyone, but I don't think it is spurious to look at what's happened to the music industry in the last 15 years or so and say that the internet has not had a negative effect.

        That's because the 'you can only purchase the album' business model was destroyed. Really it should never have been as lucrative as it was.

      • by poetmatt (793785)

        a market change isn't negative to the market, it's only negative to that industry.

        People spend their money elsewhere. It doesn't mean music is dying.

      • by AmonTheMetalhead (1277044) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:11PM (#35820854)

        I hate the RIAA and their methods as much as anyone, but I don't think it is spurious to look at what's happened to the music industry in the last 15 years or so and say that the internet has not had a negative effect.

        I don't know, i used to buy plenty of Cd's, and i still do buy Cd's, but the last 15 years has seen extremely crappy 'artists', there's hardly anything coming out (from the major labels) i even want to listen to. It's not the internet that's killing the industry, it's lack of good material.

        • by brit74 (831798)
          I think it's pretty much a cliche that people don't like 'new music' as they get older, and argue that music was much better when they were young. My own interpretation is that young people have young, impressionable brains, they absorb the music of their generation, they like it, and as their brains start to harden up, they're dismissive of the 'new stuff' because it's different from the stuff they absorbed when they were young and impressionable.
          • There is definately a truth to that, but also a matter of quality, there is a reason the old guys are still popular even with the new crowds.
      • I hate the RIAA and their methods as much as anyone, but I don't think it is spurious to look at what's happened to the music industry in the last 15 years or so and say that the internet has not had a negative effect.

        The effect the internet has had has been to somewhat level the playing field between smaller acts and big labels, with the result that instead of getting a small handful of acts who each sell millions of recordings, you get a far larger number of smaller acts that can each make a living without becoming millionaires. The idea that getting more self-sustaining bands and more music but less of a chance for record companies to be king makers is, on balance, "a negative effect" seems highly disingenuous to me.

        I'm an amateur musician, but among the semi-professionals I know no one has any delusions about breaking into the music industry anymore. It's really changed the landscape because the industry itself has shrunk dramatically.

        I

      • I hate the RIAA and their methods as much as anyone, but I don't think it is spurious to look at what's happened to the music industry in the last 15 years or so and say that the internet has not had a negative effect.

        It will have a continuing negative effect on revenue - not that I care how much EMI makes, but I do care when by extension there is less money available to sign artists, promote music that is not currently mainstream, when lower quality music receives all the promotion dollars available from the now smaller pool, etc.

        I'm an amateur musician, but among the semi-professionals I know no one has any delusions about breaking into the music industry anymore. It's really changed the landscape because the industry itself has shrunk dramatically.

        Maybe people will see it as good in the future that most music will be local and self-released by the artist and the only acts with real national exposure will be the Britneys and Taylors who sell football stadiums. I just don't think some of the greatest records would have ever been recorded in the current and future system. We've lost something.

        Oh, just release good stuff, and you won't have piracy issues. Iron Maiden really does nothing about piracy (other than look the other way, or encourage their fans to share IM's music amongst themselves), yet even with nearly 60,000 videos on YouTube, according to EMI, they don't have a piracy issue for Iron Maiden's stuff - people go out and BUY their music instead of pirating it. And they are buying it in record numbers for Iron Maiden. Someplace on IM's or EMI's website, you can found EMI's statement. So

  • In other news (Score:5, Informative)

    by mseeger (40923) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @01:40PM (#35819840)

    In a shocking development, the famous tech web site "Slashdot" has been found to post misleading headlines *again*. While the european court is moving to ban internet blocking without a law, it clearly states that it would be legal if a specific law would allow and specify the conditions for it.

    • by Drakkenmensch (1255800) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @01:48PM (#35819924)
      Basically, not letting the copyright lawyers set the "laws" themselves and move the goalposts every single time something happens that they don't like. Sounds like a step in the right direction to me.
    • by Haedrian (1676506)

      If nothing its a precursor to Net Neutrality.

      Of course there needs to be that clause, otherwise they couldn't filter child pornography.

    • by AmiMoJo (196126)

      That is just a concession that they have to put in to keep the national governments happy. They are going to want to block stuff like child pornography etc. It would still be extremely effective at preventing blocking on the grounds of copyright infringement and would give ISPs support when they tell the music and movie industries to fuck off. It would also prevent the ISPs from blocking rival video streaming sites because "they suck up too much bandwidth" etc.

      This is very good news.

      • by CCarrot (1562079)

        It would also prevent the ISPs from blocking rival video streaming sites because "they suck up too much bandwidth" etc.

        Sorry? I thought this proposal was saying that nobody can *force* the ISPs through the courts to block arbitrary content without an actual law *requiring* all ISPs to block it (such as child-pron). I didn't see anything in there stating that ISP's can't voluntarily and arbitrarily choose to filter content on their own initiative...but IANAL, maybe I missed it...

  • Please set an example for the rest of the world in this regard. This definitely needs to be recognized and upheld if we wish to maintain the integrity and usefulness of the internet.
  • European court
    Has preliminary rule
    BI now gives finger

  • Is this between the Fortress of Solitude and Lex's Lair?

  • This kind of reminds of of the half-hearted threats to move away from Windows. Microsoft invariably rides in on a grey horse and offers them a better deal not to migrate away from Windows.

    Does anyone have any expectations that this ruling, which is diametrically opposed to everything else we've been seeing, is anything but a cry for attention from the money-givers?

  • Updated article (Score:5, Informative)

    by CrystalFalcon (233559) * on Thursday April 14, 2011 @02:24PM (#35820360) Homepage

    Hello, Slashdot. I had intended to update this article tomorrow with a more detailed analysis, but given that it's now Slashdot Top Story, I posted the followup immediately. For your convenience:

    What this does is say that:

    One, no court may impose an ISP with an order to filter, in particular not because of enforcement of copyright monopolies;

    Two, such filtering is a reduction of fundamental rights, so

    Three, if laws are written requiring an ISP filter or block the internet, such laws must conform to very strict criteria that are applied to laws limiting fundamental rights. They must be effective, they must be proportionate, and they must be defensible in a democratic society. While this sounds like political wishywashing, it has some very specific meanings. It is useful to compare to what laws have been written to prevent terrorism: these laws are held to that standard, which the copyright industry wants badly to supersede. The Attorney General also goes into detail how such laws must be transparent and predictable.

    What this does not say is that:

    Four, no censorship must ever take place.

    Five, no ISP may choose to limit what they present as "The Internet".

    In conclusion:

    Six, it has been the modus operandi of the copyright industry to threaten ISPs with "block to our wishes or we'll take you to court". This has been their standard operating procedure for the past couple of years, in order to establish enough precendents to get them written into law. Today's verdict, or potential verdict, gives those ISPs the power to say "go play on the highway, parasites, we have an order from the highest possible court saying no court can force us to do that. We care more about our customers than about obsolete irrelevants".

    Seven, this is the highest court in Europe, referring to the (equivalent of) Constitution of Europe. Thus, there are no courts and no laws that can supersede this. No EU Directive can change this (potential) verdict. The way forward for the copyright industry appears permanently blocked; I hold it as absolutely improbable that they'll get paragraphs in the referred European Charter of Human Rights that put the copyright monopoly before the sanctity of correspondence, of personal data, and freedom of information.

    There. Do I get karma for posting from my own blog when it is TFA?

    Oh, and yay - my server is holding. *celebrate*

  • Hey, people in the land of freedom. How do you consider regulation such as this? It certainly is regulation, but it also certainly promotes freedom. I know there people who cannot fathom that freedom and regulation are not xor, infact I think you have minimum freedom in both the the minimum and the maximum end of the how-much-regulation-scale.
    Maximum freedom is achieved some amount of regulation. How much regulation is dependent on the society, and I think it is an unstable maximum, which is why we need to
  • Here you can read why: http://jay.lu/2011/04/%E2%80%98scarlet-extended%E2%80%99-%E2%80%93-ecj-to-prohibit-internet-filtering/ [jay.lu] Don't get too excited about this ECJ ruling on internetfiltering , firstly it isn't a ruling, secondly it doesn't outlaw web-blocking. In other words; it's all up to the individual EU memberstates now. What i think will happen, is that France & the UK will start the nasty .biz followed by a lobbying campaign in Brussels for EU ( legislative )"harmonization" since this is how mos
  • by metrometro (1092237) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @04:45PM (#35822024)

    One lever of influence gone: European courts*. What other levers exist to pressure ISPs into filtering?

    Since the courts (or, more specifically, the threat of lengthy legal hassle) can no longer be used as a lever on ISPs to “voluntarily” filter content, what non-legal levers of influence will pro-filtering actors use on the ISPs? These aren't illegal levers, just ones which don't require the courts as bully. The separation of business interests (content creators and pipe-providers, for instance) suddenly becomes very important.

    *Assuming the AG's opinion becomes a ruling, which is likely. Read the opinion -- pretty strong stuff.

Save yourself! Reboot in 5 seconds!

Working...