EU Drafts New Copyright & Communication Laws

The European Union's executive arm has proposed new copyright and communications laws. The draft copyright laws are focused on giving more rights to content owners, such as musicians and news outlets. Under the proposed laws, news aggregators such as Google News would have to pay newspapers every time they post snippets of their content online. YouTube would also be required to automatically filter video uploads for copyrighted content, such as songs, and remove any videos that contain copyrighted content. It would also be required to inform musicians of how much money it is making from their tracks. Content creators have praised the proposed laws, saying that they are currently suffering because they are not being paid when their works are being shared or copied online. However, Google has said it is strongly opposed to the draft laws, and some tech lobbyists have suggested that the rules could harm small companies that may use parts of copyrighted music clips in their videos. The proposed communications laws would ensure that chat apps and calling apps, such as Skype, would be subject to the same laws as traditional telecoms companies. The EU hopes that this will level the playing field and make it easier for European telecoms firms to compete with American tech giants.