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YouTube’s CEO Susan Wojcicki continues plea to take down EU’s Copyright Directive



On April 30th, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, once again, voiced her concern about Article 13 (now renamed Article 17). Undeterred by the Copyright Directive’s passing, Wojcicki has vowed to continue the fight.

Looking back into time, it has always been evident that YouTube wasn’t exactly happy about the European Union’s new law, the latest and the controversial Copyright Directive.

As per the Directive, Article 17 grants rights-holders an improved negotiation position with online platforms that use their works.  Authors and performers are to directly benefit from the provisions included in the bill, which includes better remuneration and contracts. Major online platforms, including YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter, will now have to sign formal licensing agreements with creators to use their works. And if they fail to do so, these platforms must ensure infringing content is taken down and not re-uploaded.

EU Member States have two years to implement the new legislation in their respective countries.

YouTube which has historically paid the music industry a poor amount in royalties compared to all other major music services, clearly it has a lot to lose now. The popular video platform now has vowed to take down Article 17 at any cost.

Susan writes in her blog:

In an open quarterly letter, CEO Susan Wojcicki has vowed to derail the Copyright Directive. Admitting that the popular video platform remains “very concerned” about Article 17, she opined that the Directive is ultimately unclear.

“While we support the rights of copyright holders – YouTube has dealt with almost all the music companies and TV broadcasters today – we’re concerned about the vague, untested requirements of the new directive,” she wrote.

She further wrote, “Article 17 could create serious limitations for what YouTube creators can upload. This risks lowering the revenue to traditional media and music companies from YouTube, and potentially devastating the many European creators who have built their businesses on YouTube.”

According to Susan, with the launch of YouTube Music in India, Japan, and Argentina, YouTube has witnessed musical artists big and small reach new audiences internationally, and the free, ad-supported streaming app is now available in 43 countries, with more to come.

Also, she further mentioned that YouTube is still very concerned about Article 13  — a part of EU’s Copyright directive that recently passed in the E.U. While YouTube supports the rights of copyright holders— it has to deal with almost all the music companies and TV broadcasters today— YouTube is concerned about the vague, untested requirements of the new directive.

“While the Directive has passed, there is still time to affect the final implementation to avoid some of the worst unintended consequences. Each E.U. member state now has two years to introduce national laws that are in line with the new rules, which means that the powerful collective voice of creators can still make a major impact. We must continue to stand up and speak out for open creativity. Your actions have already led to the most popular Change.org petition in history and encouraged people to reach across borders. This is not the end of our movement but only the beginning,” she opined.



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