Today marks a very sad day for the internet in Europe. Lawmakers in the European Parliament have just voted to turn their backs on key principles on which the internet was built; namely openness, decentralisation, and collaboration.
Parliamentarians have given a green light to new rules that will compel online services to implement blanket upload filters, a crude and ineffective measure that could well spell an end to the rich creative fabric of memes, mashups, and GIFs that make internet culture so great. The Parliament’s vote also endorses a ‘link tax’ that will undermine access to knowledge and the sharing of information in Europe.
We recognise the efforts of many MEPs who attempted to find workable solutions that would have rectified some of the grave shortcomings in this proposal. Sadly, the majority dismissed those constructive solutions, and the open internet that we’ve taken for granted the last 20 years is set to turn into something very different in Europe.
The fight is not over yet. Lawmakers still need to finalise the new rules, and we at Mozilla will do everything we can to achieve a modern reform that safeguards the health of the internet and promotes the rights of users. There’s simply too much at stake not to.