3 May 2019Copyright

YouTube calls on creators to lobby against article 17

YouTube has called on creators to lobby the national governments of EU member states in order to mitigate what it sees as the worst components of the recently passed EU Copyright Directive.

Following the directive’s approval by the European Council last month, member states have two years to transpose its provisions into national law.

In a post on the company’s  Creator Blog, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said that there was “still time to affect the [directive’s] final implementation to avoid some of the worst unintended consequences”.

France’s minister responsible for copyright, Franck Riester, has already  pledged that the government will introduce new anti-piracy legislation to implement the directive this summer.

Wojcicki said YouTube was still “very concerned” about article 17 (formerly article 13) of the directive in particular.

Article 17 makes online platforms liable for infringing content hosted on their sites, which critics say will effectively require the introduction of expensive content filters.

The German government said last month in a statement at the European Council that content filters were  likely as a result of the directive.

Wojcicki said the provision “could create serious limitations for what YouTube creators can upload”.

“This risks lowering the revenue to traditional media and music companies from YouTube and potentially devastating the many European creators who have built their businesses on YouTube”, she said.

The YouTube CEO also pledged to review the company’s manual copyright claim system to “claim very short (in some cases one second) content or incidental content like when a creator walks past a store playing a few seconds of music”.

“We are exploring improvements in striking the right balance between copyright owners and creators”, Wojcicki said.

This story was first published on TBO.

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More on this story

17 April 2019   Following the adoption of the EU Copyright Directive, Germany has claimed that controversial online upload filters are likely to be required and can only be prevented “as far as possible”.
10 July 2019   YouTube has announced changes to its copyright claims process in a bid to protect creators and better manage infringement.
29 July 2021   The EU Commission has threatened to launch infringement suits against 23 of its 27 member states for failing to implement new copyright rules in time.