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Age of censorship...

European age verification consortium starts meetings


Link Here15th July 2021
euConsent is a consortium of twelve pro-censorship academic institutions, campaigners and technology providers championing internet age verification in the name of child protection. The consortium is being funded by the EU Commission to design, deliver and pilot a new Europe-wide system age/iD verification system and to ensure that younger children have parental consent before they share personal data.

The consortium doesn't seem to have much interest in keeping adults safe from their ID and porn viewing data being used by scammers, spammers, thieves, commercial exploiters and of course state authorities.

Pro-censorship campaigner and chair of the consortium John Carr has now announced that the group has had its first meeting. He noted:

An Advisory Board has been established and I agreed to be its Chair. The Board comprises representatives of a wide range of stakeholders: European regulatory authorities, children's rights organizations, tech companies and politicians. We held our inaugural meeting last Friday.

[notice no mention of porn viewers or adult internet users].

The Board will hold the project team accountable, helping them as they establish the standards. The Board's collective and individual insights will contribute to a system that is workable with existing technology and facilitates the creation and implementation of effective regulations. Any new technologies which may emerge will know what they must be able to do if they are to be recognised as an acceptable tool.

 

 

Charged if you do, fined if you don't...

Google opts out of displaying paid for snippets to French newspapers only to be fined for 'market abuse' in not being fair to those newspapers


Link Here12th July 2021
Full story: Copyright in the EU...Copyright law for Europe
The EU red tape generation machine has become so entangle that most of the EU's latest internet laws are simply impossible to comply with.

The latest example is that search engines are nominally forced to negotiate with newspapers to agree a charge to pay for links to newspaper websites. However it now appears that French law means that newspapers can ask ask any price they like and the French authorities will fine search engines that don't agree the price.

Google has been hit with a euro 500m (£427m) fine by France's competition authority for failing to negotiate in good faith with news organisations over the use of their content.

In 2019, France became the first EU country to transpose the EU's disgraceful new Digital Copyright Directive into law. The law governed so-called neighbouring rights which are designed to compensate publishers and news agencies for the use of their material.

As a result, Google decided it would not show content from EU publishers in France, on services like search and news, unless publishers agreed to let them do so free of charge.

News organisations felt this was an abuse of Google's market power, and two organisations representing press publishers and Agence France-Presse (AFP) complained to the competition authority.

Google told the BBC: We are very disappointed with this decision - we have acted in good faith throughout the entire process.

The new ruling means that within the next two months Google must come up with proposals explaining how it will recompense companies for the use of their news. Should this fail to happen the company could face additional fines of euro 900,000 per day.

 

 

The EU 'earmarks' its copyright on bad law...

The EU publishes guidance on its impossible to implement copyright directive requiring both automatic blocking of copyrighted material for bad reasons whilst allowing it for good reasons


Link Here10th July 2021
Full story: Copyright in the EU...Copyright law for Europe
A while ago the EU passed a copyright directive demanding that internet businesses, websites and social media automatically block the upload of unauthorised copyrighted material whilst simultaneously demanding that this should not impinge on the free speech use of material in terms of memes or comment.

Of course the subtlety of distinguishing between differing usages is way beyond the AI capabilities of most EU businesses and so is more or less impossible to implement. Now EU states are getting confused on how to implement the directive in their national law.

And even though June 7 was the initial deadline for member-countries to implement it, it is far from being settled from the point of view of the harm it can cause to free online expression in the bloc.

The tortuous EU legislative process reached a milestone on June 4, when the European Commission revealed guidelines to its 27 members on how to implement Article 17, while protecting online users rights. And while the document , that is not legally binding, states that filtering should only apply to what are clear-cut cases of illegal content, it also ushers in what advocates see as a massive loophole.

It refers to giving rights holders the ability to 'earmark' content, which could end up in platforms censoring it, including in cases of fair use. Content that according to the European Commission may be earmarked as economically viable is a new term in the realm of copyright enforcement, and there are fears that it may be little more than a synonym for censorship.

Some EU member states have not given up on their legal challenge to the Directive, with Poland going to the Court of Justice of the European Union and naming the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union as defendants in a case seeking to establish if Article 17 is aligned with the bloc's Charter of Fundamental Rights. Poland is seeking partial, or full annulment of the article. The ruling is expected on July 15.

 

 

Germany vs xHamster...

The authorities are trying to block notable porn sites


Link Here2nd July 2021
Full story: Internet Censorship in Germany...Germany considers state internet filtering
The German media censor, the Commission for the Protection of Minors in the Media, wants to force the hosting provider of the porn website xHamster to lock out German users.

A year ago, the State Agency for Media in North Rhine-Westphalia began to issue porn portals such as PornHub with an ultimatum: Either they establish age verification systems or there is a threat of network blocking.

Several proceedings are currently pending at the Dusseldorf Administrative Court are being contested by porn companies who argue that they label their websites according to an international standard designed to make it easy for parents to block offers on their children's devices.

However, German legislation takes the opposite approach: Portals that are harmful to minors should only be accessible if the users are proved to be of legal age. Tobias Schmid, the director of the State Agency for Media in North Rhine-Westphalian, said:

In the end it is very simple: Anyone who wants to earn money with pornography in the German market has to adhere to German laws.

The agency has now been able to determine the hosting provider for xHamster. This is not trivial, as many porn portals disguise their IT infrastructure with the help of cloud services. The media censor has now written an official to the web host.


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