Europe: YouTube Must Pay Artists More

Europe has started a new battle in its fight against big tech from the U.S., as it announced draft rules that could make YouTube as well as others pay more to the world’s music industry.

European Union law is administrated by the European Commission, which has proposed new copyright laws for all of Europe saying it wanted to strengthen the rights of the different artists and to make sure they were compensated fairly with profits made from their work.

If these new rules are approved, they will force the different music streaming services like Dailymotion and YouTube to increase their measures for copyright protection through filtering out content that is copyrighted or pay for using it.

That is a big step up from current measures that just require the services to act upon being notified about infringement of a copyright.

The EC said it wanted to address concerns that artists have, who see the value of what they do plummet once it appears free online.

The overall music industry is in full agreement with the EC. It has lobbied Brussels to increase its pressure on online video and music providers.

IFPI is an international group that represents more than 1,300 record companies. Its CEO Frances Moore said the EC proposal confirms that uploaded content services like YouTube, which are the biggest source of music on demand, should not have the right to operate outside normal rules for licensing.

However, critics say this proposal would hurt the freedom of the Internet across Europe. As association that lobbies for freedoms online, European Digital Rights said the reform proposed panders to a lobbying interest that is small in number.

The group added that the rules would mean the filtering of all uploads in Europe to the Internet.

Google, which is the owner of YouTube, said the new proposal was worrying.

A vice president at Google, Caroline Atkinson wrote online that the proposal suggested that works that included video, text, images as well as more must first be filtered by services online.

That, she said would effectively turn Internet into a place that has everything uploaded must first be given clearance by lawyers prior to it finding an audience.

The EC wants to also give news groups the right to ask for payments from search engines and aggregators who use parts of their articles as well as other content.