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Amongst all the Brexit chaos, I thought I’d just update everyone on the recent Article 11 and Article 13, which is now Article 17.

Article 13, which is now Article 17, was recently voted in by the EU Parliament and it requires the likes of YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, all of the content websites out there, to take responsibility for copyright content that is uploaded to their platforms. Now, despite it being voted in by EU regulators, there is still a 2 year transition period where people have to now try and figure out how to actually achieve what they voted in.

For example, there is a section in Article 11 called the ‘Link Tax‘, which would require the likes of Google to pay News sites to link to their websites (that’s their wording). The article also states that it has got to be the responsibility of the platform owner itself to systematically take down and block copyrighted content. There’s an extortionate amount of information that gets uploaded to the web every single second, so it is got to be some form of an automated system to do this.

There is quite a misconception that memes will be banned as part of this, but as I’m sure you will all be happy to know, is not true.
Memes, educational content, and satire are all exempt from the penalties along with non-profit and online encyclopedias (Wikipedia), open source software development platforms, cloud storage services (Which is interesting because there is a lot of content going on to that), online marketplace and communication services.

It is very early days to know what is actually going to happen with many people believing that it is the end of free speech and the end of the internet but we don’t know really. 

For the likes of YouTube, they already have a copyright system built into their platform. So, when you upload something to YouTube, it will analyse the upload against all of the existing content they’ve got, to identify if it is copyrighted material. It needs a much bigger improvement to meet the new legislation but there’s nothing to say YouTube couldn’t  license that copyright protection system to other companies out there and use it on their systems. Who knows, it could be a copyright protection platform.

I see it a lot nowadays especially on LinkedIn, where the same viral video has been re-uploaded and re-shared hundreds of times by different people.

What does this mean to us normal UK small to medium businesses?

Not much really.

“A content hosting site can be exempt from needing an upload filter if it’s been live for less than three years or if it has an annual turnover of less than 10 million or it has fewer than five million unique monthly visitors” 

So, this is really geared towards the likes of Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube, the very big online content platforms that are out there.

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