European Commission Admit Copyright Is Broken

EuropeI have not held back in previous articles on my distaste for the current legal framework of copyright that props up failing business models that are refusing to adapt to our digital world – but it appears even the European Commission is starting to take that view.

In a speech over the weekend to the Forum D’Avignon thinktank, Digital agenda commissioner Neelie Kroes noted that the public increasingly “hate” the current copyright system and view it as “a tool to punish and withhold, not a tool to recognise and reward”.

In a political climate where governments are being lobbied into imposing draconian “three strikes” laws, extending the term of copyright, or simply getting ISPs to block copyright infringing websites – her honest and pragmatic position is a breath of fresh air. She may not have provided any answers as to what a better system may look like, but it is great to see someone who appears to actually understand the digital world not deciding to sell the digital freedom of the public for all expenses paid boat trips (*ahem* Mandelson).

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