The Platform Wars – 3 Intellectual Property strikes back – Sharing vs Creating

More than half the world’s population, or more than 4 billion people have Internet access in 2018. And we generate 2.5 quintillion (1 with 18 zeros) bytes of data a day!

Sharing information across the globe has never been as easy. Hundreds of millions of people around the world, don’t think twice before uploading photographs on Instagram and Facebook, blogging their views on the next election, sharing breaking news on Twitter and forwarding a Whatsapp “forward”!

The Internet has brought the world together on one global network that has allowed billions of users to share information and connect with each other, more easily and seamlessly than ever before. This is set to change if the EU Copyright Directive 2018 comes into force.

The Copyright Directive has 2 major controversial rules. Article 11 – simply known as the Link Tax, requires all large Platforms – aggregators and social media – to pay media houses, publishers, authors and journalists – for links to their news it uses.

Article 13 – known as the Upload Filter rule – mandates that all platforms and social media, must make sure that any content posted on it, does not infringe any copyright! Given the scale of data generation and sharing, this is only possible if there is large scale automated (read AI) censorship of content.

Both of these are aimed at protecting the interests of the individuals and organisations who “create” content. So what’s wrong you would ask – isn’t protecting the Intellectual property rights of “creators” and “innovators”, the bedrock of a modern, liberal economy and society.

The problem is that these rules – hit at the very heart of the “sharing” economy. The Internet was born and flourished on the principle of free, and unfettered connectivity and sharing of information across the globe. This borderless and free movement of information and ideas, not only spawned a single global social media driven “culture” – but also unprecedented innovation, new business models and wealth creation.

So critics argue, the EU initiative is a serious threat to the Internet itself. If implemented, users may not be able to freely share or upload media and social media platforms will lose much of their appeal, or become defunct!

The movement #SaveYourInternet, has launched a campaign across the EU to prevent the approval of these 2 Articles when it comes to vote in Jan-2019.

While this battle is projected between the “Creators” ie. IP owners – and the “Sharers” – the protectors of freedom on the internet, it has strong political implications. For in simpler terms, it is has the EU on one side – and the large US Tech companies on the other.

So before the Link Tax comes in, let me share a link to some staggering stats on the amount of data and information generated and people connected on the Net, each day!


The Platform Wars – 1

The Platform Wars – 2

#platformwars #sharingeconomy #EU #linktax #uploadfilter #AI


@IndusGuru Network Partners – an online curated platform of independent management consultants