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  4. <title>FSF Europe - EUCD - Copyright extensions that harm</title>
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  7. <p class="postit">
  8. Meanwhile, the EUCD has been implemented in all EU member countries.
  9. These pages are kept for archiving purposes.
  10. </p>
  11. <h1>EUCD - Copyright extensions that harm</h1>
  12. <p>
  13. In December 1996 in Geneve the WIPO Copyright Treaty was signed by
  14. most, if not all, developed countries. By signing this treaty these
  15. countries compromised themselves to give away the right to use a
  16. copyrighted work in favour of protection of electronic protections,
  17. independently of their effectiveness.
  18. </p>
  19. <p>
  20. Today we are starting to see the effects of this kind of
  21. legislation. The U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and
  22. the European Union Copyright Directive (EUCD) pass the WIPO treaty
  23. into effective law. This page is about the effects of this kind of
  24. legislation and related resources.
  25. </p>
  26. <p>
  27. The risks of this kind of legislation are:
  28. </p>
  29. <ul>
  30. <li>
  31. <strong>Monopolies on file formats</strong> - This is the issue that
  32. is worrying libraries. The ability to effectively control a file
  33. format means that each e-book format will have its own reader and it
  34. will only be readable by that company's reader. Maintaining access
  35. to all the different kinds of readers throughout decades needs the
  36. kind of personnel and technological ability that libraries can't
  37. afford right now, not to mention the cost of e-book readers that
  38. they'll need to have to give access to the library's users.
  39. </li>
  40. <li>
  41. <strong>Interoperability</strong> - If you can't use and share tools
  42. to analyze protocols, because they can be used to circumvent
  43. ineffective technological measures, then it's not possible to put
  44. two systems working together unless both vendors publish information
  45. on the protocols they use. Knowing the trend of proprietary software
  46. vendors to trap a client in its systems, this is not a realistic
  47. scenario.
  48. </li>
  49. <li>
  50. <strong>Insecurity</strong> - In the last years the full disclosure
  51. movement has made considerable improvements on the whole security of
  52. computer systems. This was done by forcing vendors to correct the
  53. vulnerabilities through the publishing of vulnerabilities even if
  54. they weren't corrected in a limited timeframe. To avoid an image
  55. problem most vendors started correcting in days what used to take
  56. months or even years to do. With this legislation a vulnerability
  57. that allows the circumvention of rights-management information
  58. cannot be even communicated. This means that full disclosure is not
  59. an option, and that we all lose its advantages.
  60. </li>
  61. <li>
  62. <strong>Freedom of Speech</strong> - By allowing copyright owners to
  63. define terms of use and protecting all measures taken by those
  64. owners to enforce those terms of use can limit rights as basic as
  65. freedom of speech. The most recent example is Microsoft Frontpage
  66. 2002's latest End-User License Agreement (EULA) that prohibits the
  67. usage of the software to create sites that criticise Microsoft or
  68. any of its subsidiaries.
  69. </li>
  70. </ul>
  71. <h2>Legislation</h2>
  72. <p>
  73. The pieces of legislation that follow the letter of the <a
  74. href="http://www.wipo.int/clea/docs/en/wo/wo033en.htm">WIPO Copyright
  75. Treaty</a> are:
  76. </p>
  77. <ul>
  78. <li><a href="http://www.loc.gov/copyright/legislation/dmca.pdf">Digital Millennium Copyrigth Act</a> (USA)</li>
  79. <li><a href="http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&amp;lg=EN&amp;numdoc=32001L0029&amp;model=guichett">European Union Copyright Directive</a> (EU)</li>
  80. <li><a href="http://www.ag.gov.au/publications/copyfactsheet/copyfactsheet.html">Copyright Amendment (Digital Agenda) Act 2000</a> (AU)</li>
  81. </ul>
  82. <h2>Legislation Analysis</h2>
  83. <p>
  84. This legislation as already been analyzed by law professors, experts
  85. and others. Following is a sample of those analysis:
  86. </p>
  87. <ul>
  88. <li><a href="http://www.ivir.nl/publications/hugenholtz/opinion-EIPR.html">An analysis by a dutch pofessor of law</a>.</li>
  89. <li><a href="eucd-fs.en.html">Copyright Extensions threaten Free Software in Europe</a></li>
  90. </ul>
  91. <h2>Organisations against Copyright Extensions</h2>
  92. <p>
  93. Some organisations have understood the impact of this kind of
  94. legislation and have made statements about it:
  95. </p>
  96. <ul>
  97. <li><a href="http://www.acm.org/usacm/IP/dmca.exemption.htm">Association for Computer Machinery</a></li>
  98. <li><a href="http://www.eff.org/Legal/active_legal.html">Electronic Frontier Foundation</a></li>
  99. <li><a href="http://www.eblida.org/topics/position/legaffa.htm">EBLIDA
  100. Comments on Copyright Directive</a> - European Bureau of Library,
  101. Information and Documentation Associations, The European Consumers'
  102. Association, European Association of Consumer Electronics
  103. Manufacturers, European Blind Union, European Disability Forum,
  104. International League of Societies for Persons with Mental Handicap -
  105. European Association
  106. </li>
  107. </ul>
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