I blogged some days ago about the possible introduction of an article, 17.bis, in the new Internet law -not yet enacted- by which SGAE (the General society of the authors and editors) could shut web pages if it considers they are illegal.
si una página web aloja obras intelectuales que pudieran vulnerar derechos de autor, la entidad de gestión o asociación representativa puede dirigirse al prestador de servicios que aloja esa página [...] el prestador del servicio de alojamiento queda obligado a dirigir la misma a su cliente en los próximos tres días hábiles [...] el cliente estará obligado a defenderse ante entidades como SGAE de la ilegalidad que le están atribuyendo en los próximos 6 días hábiles si no quiere ver cómo le bloquean el acceso a esos contenidos que la entidad o asociación señalan como ilícitos. El simple hecho de recibir esa comunicación de la entidad de gestión, aunque sea insostenible y ridícula, obliga a que te defiendas ante ella, el silencio faculta a la entidad de gestión para que inste el bloqueo al acceso del contenido presuntamente ilícito. [...]
"If a web page is reproducing intelectual works which could go against author's rights, the SGAE or any other similar association will be able to tell the server where the blog/page is located to inform that the blog's author is breaking the law. The client will be obliged to defend him before the SGAE of the illegality in the next 6 days if he does not want to see his blog's content down or closed. Even if the communication is absolutely ridiculous or unmaintainable, it obliges the normal blogger/website's author to defend himself to regain access to the presumably illicit content".
So a few weeks ago, there was a campaign against the insertion of this article. Although several people consider that they should be cautious about the Government's movement not to include it, no one denied some kind of relief about the article's supression.
But the relief has not been very long:
El Ministerio de Industria ha enviado a los miembros del Consejo Asesor de Telecomunicaciones un texto (PDF 90KB) casi idéntico al artículo que se eliminó de la reforma de la Ley de Internet, enviada la semana pasada al Congreso para su tramitación.
The Industry Minister has sent the members of the Consulting Council of Telecommunications a text very similar to the article supressed from the reform of the Internet law, sent the past week to Congress.
So according to this law, SGAE, which is NOT a judicial body, just an administrative one, is able to shut down/suspend a blog/web just because they consider that it can/might infringe the author's rights.
And this is related to the words of SGAE's lawyer, Pedro Farré, who considered that normal people should not be allowed to surf the web if they don't have a sort of "driving licence", and considered that the web should not be annonymus, as people on the web "are not responsible for what they do".
What this man wants is that, no introduce the address of a webpage, you should first enter your own data (contained in the driving licence), and only afterwards the browser will take you there. In the meantime, everything that you do -or anything that you write in the Internet, will be monitorised.
This truly POLICE STATE has only one reason: money and power -as ever-. Authors -specially musical ones- are -supposedly- losing huge quantities of money because of the unregulated sales (i.e. sales in the street, with no payment to the author, no taxes...). So after the canon -they want any of the people who buy a computer, DVDs, CDs, MP3s reproducers... to pay a canon to the authors, just in case they use those devices to store protected material-, they want any of us to be outed in the Internet, in an administrative process, in which you can be punished (i.e. fined, for example) before going to court.
The communication can be totally wrong or even something entirely lacking of any sense, but if you want to prevent a definitive erasing of your files, you will have to show yourself. Thus your annonymus condition will end.
Para hacernos una idea de la monstruosidad que propone Farré, no haría falta más que extrapolarla a la vida fuera de internet: cada libro que uno compra, cada conversación, cada sitio al que acudimos... todo debidamente auditado y permitido previa muestra de nuestro documento de identidad, con registro de los hechos de manera que se nos puedan exigir responsabilidades. Un ojo que todo lo viera en cada momento y así impidiese cualquier hecho "no permitido" por el sistema. Una idea propia de pesadillas "orwellianas" o, también, de quien no ve más allá de sus ansias recaudatorias.
As the web Error500 wrote, "you can consider what this means if you take the situation to the normal life, out of the Internet: each book that one buys, each conversation, each place where we go... everything conveniently controlled and allowed after you show your identity card, with a registry of all the facts so they can sue us. An eye that can see it all and could prevent the realization of any fact which is not allowed by the system. An idea which can be found on the "Orwellian" nightmares or just in the mind of people who do not see farther than their own tax collection".
Of course, the "Culture" world has asked for the article 17bis to be reintroduced as they consider that the "producers of technological equipment and devices are working on exclusively economical terms and have huge benefits in other parts of the world". They mix the canon with the blocking of copyright material. And they continue saying that they are making a huge effort to boost culture in modern Spain and Spanish cultural values.
The producers work on economical terms -they are firms-. But that has nothing to do with it: we are considering if it's just to oblige the normal people to pay a canon for copying a song from a CD in the MP3, for example, what it has been named as "private copy". And no, it is not: the canon considers every citizen a criminal which should be punished before he has even committed the crime and even if he does not do it in his entire life. And the "driving licence" makes possible to punish the content which is not agreeable to SGAE's eyes, even if it's not copyrighted and even if afterwards the web-writer has been declared innocent. Because as a lot of people points out every PC has an IP. And that is the way to discover who are really committing crimes over the Internet (pedophiles, terrorists,...).