Clearing the minefield that is online copyright law lies in the hands of web programmers, according to the inventor of www, Tim Berners-Lee.
He was speaking at the www2012 conference in Lyon, France, where he used his keynote speech on Wednesday to reiterate his defence of internet openness and warn of the dangers threatening it.
A panel that also included European Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes discussed, among other issues, the controversy of proposed anti-piracy laws such as ACTA.
After the debate, one conference participant- a programmer and producer of music- asked how protecting intellectual property online could be reconciled with the idea of an internet that is open to all.
Berners-Lee advised him to be creative and use his computing skills to come up with a solution that would satisfy creators and consumers alike, telling him:
“Imagine what you want the world to look like, then go geek! Go and do it!”
UNLOVED ANTI-PIRACY LAWS
Many governments, backed by industry lobbyists, are trying to get bills passed that would prevent music, film and other intellectual property being consumed for free over the internet. Opponents of these bills claim they threaten basic freedoms such as privacy, expression and access to information.
The US administration saw its SOPA and PIPA shot down in a hail of popular protest. A new replacement bill, CISPA, has also drawn criticism from consumer groups.
The once smooth passage of a similar signed but, as yet, non-ratified multinational treaty, ACTA, has been slowed by growing accusations of violations of civil liberties.
FRANCE’S HADOPI ‘RIDICULOUSLY OUT OF WHACK’
Under the provisions of France’s own version, HADOPI, repeat offenders of online copyright infringement could have their internet connections cut off. Berners-Lee described HADOPI as “ridiculously out of whack” with the practical requirements of tomorrow’s internet. Punishing a teenager who illegally copies intellectual property by cutting off the internet connection to his/her whole household would be “weird,” he added.
There is undoubtedly growing public mistrust of government efforts to tackle what most people agree is a genuine problem for intellectual proprietors. For Berners-Lee and many others in the www community the best chances of a compromise may lie with programmers coming up with innovative business models rather than law-makers drafting new legislation.
Among those who agree is Neelie Kroes, the EU’s head of all things digital. She opened her keynote speech in Lyon on Thursday with the words: “The best thing about the internet is that it is open,” prompting immediate and warm from the audience, led by Berners-Lee.
We need to get rid of “digital handcuffs,” she added, brandishing a pair of real handcuffs to force home her point.
Members of the www community will keep a close eye on what Kroes, and the rest of Europe’s decision-makers, seek to put in place. In the meantime, they have been urged to dream up the solutions themselves.
Copyright © 2014 euronewsMore about:
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Iraq: Baghdad rally held against US ‘occupiers’ | euronews, world news
- 3Now is ‘right time’ for Catalonia independence vote, says Mas | euronews, world news
- 4Vatican rocked by another paedophilia scandal | euronews, world news
- 5Two container ships collide on Egypt’s Suez Canal | euronews, no comment
- 6British Muslims’ message to ISIL: Not in my name! | euronews, world news
- 7Ukraine: Donetsk rebel weapons factory blows up | euronews, world news
- 8Algeria: ISIL offshoot releases video threatening French hostage Hervé Gourdel | euronews, world news
- 9Sweden becomes first European nation to recognise Palestine | euronews, world news
- 10Emma Watson threatened with naked photos leak after UN equality speech | euronews, world news
- 11Iceland volcano ‘pollutes Paris’ | euronews, world news
- 12How nasheeds became the soundtrack of jihad | euronews, world news
- 13Learning through “serious games” | euronews, learning world
- 14euronews speaks to Ban Ki-moon ahead of key UN and climate change talks | euronews, the global conversation
- 15Thousands ‘evade’ Ebola lockdown in Sierra Leone | euronews, world news
- 16Mike Tyson: ‘You learn humbleness when you get older in life’ | euronews, the global conversation
- 17European Union News | euronews: latest breaking news and headlines about European Union
- 18Ebola: Six new suspected cases in Spain | euronews, world news
- 19International tv news | euronews: European and International tv news bulletin
- 20Global warming to ‘cause 250,000 extra deaths a year’ | euronews, world news
Wires > News
- 14:41 CET Blast rocks Donetsk in east Ukraine, no deaths reported
- 14:05 CET Nigeria declared Ebola-free after containing virus
- 13:53 CET Ukraine, Russia gas deal may be just enough to get through winter
- 13:47 CET Thai rights body to probe torture claims over tourist murders
- 12:59 CET EU’s Ashton to stay on until end of Iran nuclear talks
- 12:54 CET Turkey to let Iraqi Kurds reinforce Kobani as U.S. drops arms to…
- 12:46 CET Bus accident kills 20 in Bangladesh, leaves 30 injured
- 12:08 CET Japanese PM Abe suffers setback as two ministers quit