19 April 2007

Intellectual Monopoly Enforcement Directive

Doesn't sound so good like that, does it? Perhaps that's why they dress it up as the Intellectual Property Enforcement Directive, which sounds so much cosier. But the fact is, bad things are about to happen in Europe on this front:

IPRED2 – the EU’s second intellectual property enforcement directive – is going to the vote at the EU Parliament next week. If it passes in its current form, “aiding, abetting, or inciting” copyright infringement on a “commercial scale” in the EU will become a crime. What’s more, it will be the first time the EU will force countries to impose minimal criminal sanctions – this is normally left up to the discretion of member states.

If you're a citizen of the European Union - and remember, that includes all you Romanians, Bulgarians out there, too - please write to your MEP and point out how bad this legislation as currently drafted it (contact UK MEPs here). Aside from bolstering intellectual monopolies, it will also threaten free software development.

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