The Recreating Europe program includes many working groups to help revise digital copyright for a culturally diverse, accessible and creative Europe. The project is funded by the EU's Horizon2020 program. The final conference of the project will take place on March 21 and 22 in Brussels, Belgium, but can also be attended online.
The participating ZeMKI project deals with the following topics:
Social media platforms have become key regulators of the historically tense relationship between freedom of expression and copyright enforcement. Every day, services like YouTube, Instagram and Facebook examine, monetise and remove millions of videos, pictures and texts on the grounds that these contents match existing registered works or violate platform guidelines. Their massive sway over public discourse is (and will remain) the target of global disputes between platforms, governments, the media industry, content producers and users. In the EU, for instance, national governments now have to follow the new “copyright directive”. Approved in 2019 with the aim of reducing the power gap between platforms and creators, the directive has been met with intense controversy over its exact implementation and consequences. Especially Article 17 of the directive (formerly Article 13), which makes platforms responsible for the content they host, has ignited massive protests and fears of censorship.
This project tackles these issues from two complementary perspectives. On the one hand, it investigates the governance structures that social media platforms have devised over time to create a profitable balance between freedom of and control over speech. How do the obscure algorithmic systems that identify and take down contents function? What private rules are used to regulate both these systems and users’ actions? How do platforms adapt to public pressure and regulatory interventions and change their internal rules and guidelines? On the other hand, the project looks into the actual consequences of these governance structures. How do they transform platforms’ informational environments? How are they understood and acted upon by creators and users and how might this change the way their voices are articulated? Are Article 17 and other provisions of the EU directive really massively reducing the availability of diverse content online? Answering these questions is instrumental to understand how diversity and accessibility to knowledge and culture have (or have not) been transformed by a largely novel sociotechnical solution to a centuries’ old problem.
More information about the project "Platform Governance and Copyright"
Link to participate in the conference
Information on ReCreating Europe