Posting memes, remixes, and other similar content could soon be banned from the web in the European Union, according to critics who are speaking out against a recently proposed copyright law.
The law, known as the "Copyright Directive," will be voted on later this month by the European Parliament, and lawmakers suggest that this will protect content creators in the internet age. However, one of the primary reasons why the internet age has brought us so much innovation and novelty is because of the fact that such a large aggregate of people are able to share their ideas and build upon the ideas of others to create something uniquely special.
Article 13 of the proposed bill calls on platform providers such as Google, Facebook, and web hosts to "take measures to ensure the functioning of agreements concluded with rights-holders for the use of their works".
This type of policy would create a slippery slope that could very quickly lead to a situation where platforms are required to add a filter for the content that is shared through them, which will restrict the ability for creators to do something as simple as creating a meme or a remix of a song.
When the law was first suggested, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and 56 other civil society organizations sent an open letter to European lawmakers, warning of the possible implications of this law.
The letter reads: