Sigh. I wish I was posting about something more uplifting and fun. Instead, I need to write this in my best Hulk voice:
EUROPEAN UNION WANT TO HURT WIKIS. GRRRR.
Randomly smashing things wouldn’t help here, so I’ll try to explain what’s happening and how you can help. This is me still in Hulk mode, but with glasses on.
Who do you think should be responsible for an edit on a wiki? Or a post in Discussions?
This is not a trick question. And if you’ve been a part of FANDOM for a while you would probably answer:
The entire wiki community has a shared responsibility for keeping the content up to date and well organized. Similarly with Discussions, we’re all responsible for keeping the conversations interesting and civil.
But it’s the user making the edit or creating a post who’s responsible for making sure the change is a good one. Good content is on-topic and doesn’t break any laws – it’s either added by the author (when you write your page yourself), added with permission, and/or permitted by law.
Today, according to the law, the person adding the content is responsible for what they add. And that makes sense, right?
Unfortunately, the European Union is considering changing this by introducing a new European Copyright Directive.
If passed, the proposed new law appears to require FANDOM to verify every edit and upload, and remove any content that appears to be used without permission. They want to make FANDOM actively police all content added to our sites.
In other words: this law would require us to censor our communities.
We strongly believe this is not right. It goes against the open internet that we are all building together. It’s also not needed.
Our most active communities already carefully review their content, and are perhaps some of the more copyright-aware places on the web. Those places within FANDOM which are less frequented get screened by members of our tireless community volunteers. And if something slips through, a copyright owner can contact FANDOM directly – we review the content, and take action if needed. This process works.
In place of this tested process, Article 13 of the proposed European Copyright Directive seems to require that companies automatically verify the copyright status of all edits, posts, videos and images. This would be very costly, often unfair, and would restrict freedom of speech and access to information.
So please, join us in smashing this idea of forced censorship to pieces!
The proposed law is up for a vote on September 12. We still have time to make a difference.
If you’d like to learn more about the European Copyright Directive and its most concerning Article 13, here’s some further reading:
- How will this impact you (Save Your Internet campaign)
- Your internet is under threat. Here’s why you should care about European Copyright Reform. (Wikimedia Foundation blog)
FANDOM and our communities have always stood for a free and open internet. Together we spoke out against surveillance on The Day We Fight Back in 2014, and protested against US legislation SOPA and PIPA back in 2011. And your continued vocal support of these initiatives makes me proud to be part of this community of ours.
Go to ChangeCopyright.org to take action now.
And please spread the word by sharing this blog post with your community!
Lucas Garczewski FANDOM Staff
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