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Euro Parliament Warns Against Overzealous IP Enforcement 73

An anonymous reader writes "Days after New Zealand dropped its support for the 'three strikes and you're out' approach for terminating Internet subscribers, the European Parliament has now similarly rejected the proposed approach. Today the EP adopted a new report on security and fundamental freedoms on the Internet that expressly rejects disproportionate measures for IP enforcement and the use of excessive access restrictions placed by IP rights holders."
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Euro Parliament Warns Against Overzealous IP Enforcement

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  • There seem to be a huge number of governments, agencies, corporations, and people who are carefully measuring how abusive they can be to the Internet. It's the old story: The powerful want to make money or get more power by restricting someone else's freedom.

    Piracy is a serious issue. But the bulk of the problem with individuals doing piracy seems to be that there is often no good option to buy music and videos. Once companies bring themselves into modern thinking and modern ways of commerce, piracy will be less of a problem.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Chemosabe ( 1049664 )
      Good to see that the European Parlament is in tune with what the pirate bay generation already know; that there is a change in the rules of the game.
    • Piracy is a serious issue.

      Indeed, but copyright is a fucking joke.

      • by haeger ( 85819 )

        I don't see copyright as a joke at all. I do believe it does have a place in modern society. I don't have a problem with the fact that people who make things get paid for them, even if what they make is an intangible thing.

        Painter, writers, programmers, actors and others deserve to be paid, no argument there.

        I do however see the internet as a great equalizer. If the difference between what someone makes from copyright is too large compared to what other people make doing something else then the law loses it

        • by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 27, 2009 @06:37AM (#27354987)

          You're assuming that copyright is the "right way" to ensure that people who make IP get paid for it - indeed, authors already get paid for the "right to publish" their work (which amounts to selling their IP rights to someone else), which would be possible analogously (just not uploading the master to anyone until they pay you) without copyright, strictly. Of course, the incentive to buy those rights would be reduced, but...

          The main problem with copyright, though, is that it has been strengthened and extended far too much over the last century, such that now it doesn't do what it was originally intended to do - encourage production of works *which enter the public domain after the copyright expires*. For several classes of content, copyright effectively never expires now, which removes the important second component of the feature.

          • i think we're talking about contract work here, which is how classical music developed anyway. if a work is only performed once or a very limited number of times (which was the usual state for classical music), there's no point in having copyright.
        • by Chatterton ( 228704 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @06:40AM (#27355003) Homepage
          copyright is a fucking joke by it's length of 95 years after the death of the author. 1) Tell me how a dead artist is compelled to create new content after his death by this income. 2) The copyright are generaly owned by corporation that can't be dead because they are already living dead soul suckers... If they decide to go back a little back on the length of the copyright and who can own a copyright, well then will I see it as an useful tool again.
          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by Andy_R ( 114137 )

            Corporations dying or not is irrelevant, the right expires 95 years after the author dies, not the owner. The original reason for copyright extending beyond the author's life time was that back in the days before it was common for women to have jobs and for diseases to be curable the wives and children of authors would suffer a double blow if the author died, they would be widowed and deprived of their income, while the publishers would get a big financial bonus because they would no longer be paying royalt

            • ...they would be widowed and deprived of their income,...

              Which still happens to spouses and children of people who do not produce IP (like plumbers, drivers, builders, managers). He's dead -> does not work anymore -> does not get paid.

              So why are families of IP producers different? The person died, he no longer works and no longer gets paid. If he had some brains, he put some of the money he earned in a bank or invested it, so he has something to leave for his family. Just like every other person.

              Personally, I'd go for 'copyright last x years after first publication, rights sold to coporations revert to the author if the work is not commercially exploited, rights reverted to the author expire quickly if the work is still not commercially exploited', and I'd say x should be around 30 to 50 ish.

              I'd agree with that. If the company or author stops selling t

        • by smoker2 ( 750216 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @07:02AM (#27355133) Homepage Journal
          I don't have a problem with copyright either. I do have an issue with limited copyright protection lasting 70 years after the authors death. I don't care how much they make from their creation, I do have an issue with how long they expect to keep making money from old work. If an artist, say a pop star, makes $10M in 2 years, from one hit album, then expecting society to protect their work from copying for more than 100 years is complete and utter greed. If an artist ,ie. a painter, creates a work, then they can sell it. There are no copyright issues lasting 100 years (not allowing for prints). Either they get paid or they don't. If they want to make more money they have to paint another work and sell it. It's time to stop these assholes who believe they are owed a lifetime monopoly for pretty minor contributions to society. I bet the pop star doesn't send money back to their English teacher, or their music teacher, or the town council or the innumerable other people who made their specific contributions to the success of that one artist. No, despite having all that help, once they make some money it's a case of "mine all mine".

          People also tend to forget that a work being out of copyright, does not prevent the original author making money from it. I find it amusing that the fall in the standards of new music is paralleled by the rise in the length of copyright terms. Extended copyright terms leave new artists with nowhere to go. Which is precisely the opposite of what copyright was intended to achieve.
          • I also agree with the concept and spirit of copyright, but disagree with the implementation of it. Copyright by its nature should be none transferable. Meaning if John Doe wrote a piece of literature, you shouldn't say the the company xyz that bought the copyright wrote it, nor should the company package a group with the same name but fire the original authors and claim the packaged group wrote it. Further more, in no cases should any company bar the original author from using their own work. What it comes

        • I hear this argument all the time.

          Since when did people not have a way to get paid without copyright? Why should we give someone a monopoly for being so idiotic that they can't monetize their own creations, and interpret it so loosely as we had for the last 20-25 years?

          Oh, right, so they don't innovate again and sit on the one single thing they create is a hit and never make anything else again. Oh, and re-release whatever it is into movies, action figures, tv series, etc, and sue into oblivion anyone who m

          • Why should we give someone a monopoly for being so idiotic that they can't monetize their own creations

            Sometimes it's not a matter of idiocy but of resources and recourse. Let's assume that there was no copyright law. Let's also say that tomorrow I wrote a book and shopped it around to various publishers. Publishers A-D refused publication, but small-publisher E made a limited run of my book. It became a hit and less-than-scrupulous Publisher B decides to cash in. They take the manuscript copy I gave t

    • by Yvanhoe ( 564877 )

      The powerful want to make money or get more power by restricting someone else's freedom.

      I used to think that was the point of the fight, but now I really have the impression that it is the clueless desperately trying to give the image that he is in control.

  • by QuantumG ( 50515 ) * <> on Friday March 27, 2009 @03:23AM (#27354077) Homepage Journal

    Meh, these power grabs weren't even anything to do with "IP".. they were attempts to circumvent the legal system which has already rejected the nefarious claims of the music companies.

  • Hey, can we spot the typo in the summary?
  • the use of excessive access restrictions placed by IP rights holders

    Will this, one wonders, apply to the case of PearC, who are installing OSX on x86 machines in Germany? Will it have a bearing on any reaction Apple may make to EFI-X?

  • by coretx ( 529515 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @05:47AM (#27354711)
    Intellectual Property is no "Property" IP is a goverment granted temporary monopoly, that was created in the 19th century, when publishing was expensive, and represseing books was verry cheap. This was done in order to save the business model and stimulate new productions. Nowadays, online publishing costs nearly nothing. And publishing in general has become dirt cheap in comparison. Where as "property" is a basic human right protected by law. People confuse "IP" with real property and react acordingly, as if it is a human right, wich it is not. If we ever wish to change this, and make rational decissions, we should stop useing the words "Intelectual property"
    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      What method do you use to distinguish human rights from other rights? And how does this method detect normal property rights as human rights, but "IP" rights as other rights?

      • by Sique ( 173459 )

        Human rights are the rights you have independently of the local laws. Laws that infer to your human rights are considered unenforcable or unconstitutional. The U.S. even from time to time invade regions with other legislation (e.g. other countries) under the premise to reinstitute the human rights.

        • You didn't answer my question. How did you determine that (normal) property rights are human rights? And how did you determine that "IP" rights are not?

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Sique ( 173459 )

            One of the big differences is that you can actually have a border around your property. You can't have a border around your "intellectual property", because even in the most original Works of Art there are layers and layers of cultural knowledge, environmental influences and ideas from other people.

            As an easy example: "Which part of '42' is public knowledge, and which part is the intellectual property of Douglas Adams (Estate)?" (To make it more simple for you, using 42 in any circumstances is completely fr

            • One of the big differences is that you can actually have a border around your property.

              I cannot have a border around my life, my health, or my freedom of speech. Therefore I conclude life, health and freedom of speech are not human rights?

              Note: I didn't ask you about the differences between property and "IP" (I know those), I asked you about why you think property is a human right, and "IP" isn't.

        • Human rights are the rights you have independently of the local laws.

          If the local laws say you don't have those rights, then people who live there don't have those rights, no matter how much anyone thinks they should have them.

          The U.S. even from time to time invade regions with other legislation (e.g. other countries) under the premise to reinstitute the human rights.

          So the whole world has to live by US law? Don't think so.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Teun ( 17872 )
      It seems you mix up the rights of the author and the printer.
      Although I don't at al agree with the silly in excess of life time awarding of rights to authors and their successors I do wish to give them a chance to benefit from their often years of work.
  • All those corporate types who think that Piracy is the "bane of society" or similar unsupported claims need to only look at these people, and how by changing the way they release their products they've done incredibly well (some even better than when they were with the large organisations):

    Trent Reznor/NIN - he releases all his albums for free with a "pay what you think it's worth" mentality.
    Radiohead - they released an album under the same idea as NIN, and they profited wildly from it
    Cory Doctorow - re
  • by Alsee ( 515537 ) on Friday March 27, 2009 @07:37AM (#27355337) Homepage

    What, no executions?


    • by HTH NE1 ( 675604 )

      "Now, either you all give yourselves up now and let us beat you up a bit, though not very much of course because we are firmly opposed to needless violence, or we blow up this entire planet and possibly one or two others we noticed on our way out here!"

  • Dear Editors,

    It is called European Parliament or EU Parliament because of the European Union (EU) [].
    The Euro [] is the official currency of 16 out of 27 member states of the European Union (EU).

"We don't care. We don't have to. We're the Phone Company."