Platform responsibility? Get the backstory - check my book The Closing of the Net - only £15.99!

IPR Enforcement

IPR enforcement on the Internet is highly contrversial as measures may entail some form of content blocking and  impose new liabilities on  ISPs and content platforms.  Blocking measures immediately engage the right to freedom of expression.

This section  monitors  aspects of EU policy which relate to IPR and copyright enforcement from 2009. It covers a variety of industry-led proposals, including early moves against Internet providers. Iptegrity provided almost exclusive coverage of the European Commission's proposed Notice and Action Directive. It was  subsequently shelved - but will it re-appear? The section also logs industry moves which may influence the policy agenda and seeks to understand ways in which European  IPR enforcement policy could change or evolve.

If you like the articles in this section and you are interested in copyright enforcement policy in the EU, you may like my books A Copyright Masquerade: How Corporate Lobbying Threatens Online Freedoms and The Copyright Enforcement Enigma - Internet Politics and the ‘Telecoms Package’

You might also like my latest  book 'The Closing of the Net' which examins corporate power and Internet policy, including 3 chapters on copyright.

The European Commission is consulting on blocking orders against websites, and on privacy rules which relate to graduated response / 3-strikes measures. Interested Internet users have just over 2 months left to respond.


 Just before Christmas, on 22 December,  the European Commission snuck out a  Report on    the IPR Enforcement directive (commonly known as IPRED).  This  is the Report from the Commission on the Application of Directive 2004/48/EC on the enforcement of Intellectual Property rights. The Report is   the first shot in a Consultation process which ends on 31st March.

The   main goal is to build   new measures for copyright enforcement on the Internet into EU law.  That is unmistakeably clear when you read the text of the Report. File-sharing is one target. Search engines are another. Anyone selling online  is a third target group.

 It is also very evident that the Commission proposes to use ISPs and

Read more: IPRED review: alarm bells for those who care about the 'Net

DG Markt has been secretly  working on a  file-sharing MoU for over a year.  According to available sources,  telecoms industry groups such as EuroISPA and ETNO have been sitting together with  the rights-holders such as IFPI and Vivendi, in meetings chaired by Commission staff.  But why did the Commission not reveal the MoU possibility  in answer to a  European Parliament question?


The European Commission is trying to get industry to agree to a "voluntary" MoU on file-sharing, and copyright enforcement. The  MoU has been discussed in non-public talks with industry lobbyist along with a parallel initiative to update and amend the IPR Enforcement directive. On the table  are blocking injunctions and privacy implications for 3-strikes, as well as so-called ‘legal offers'.


The existence of the talks was first revealed by

Read more: Secrets and lies and EU file-sharing talks

The European Parliament has reneged on its previous position to protect users rights against  3-strikes/graduated response for  copyright enforcement with a vote endorsing the Gallo report.

To make matters worse, the French media has exposed  how the European Parliament was informed by questionable  rights-holder lobbying which included the name of at least one dead person. 


The  European Parliament has taken a backwards step, an U-turned on its former position which protected Internet users' rights. Instead - unbelievably -  it has voted in favour of  the  hard-line Gallo  report which wants to see criminalisation of copyright infringements and ISP liability for copyright. These are the kind of policies which the European Parliament is opposing  in the ACTA (Anti-counterfeiting Trade Agreement) and which it has previously opposed on several occasions over the past two years.

 The Gallo report is an 'own-initiative' report written by the French, centre-right MEP Marielle Gallo. It is not

Read more: Gallo report: European Parliament U-turns on users rights



States v the 'Net? 

Read The Closing of the Net, by me, Monica Horten.

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" essential read for anyone interested in understanding the forces at play behind the web."

Find out more about the book here  The Closing of the Net


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Copyright Enforcement Enigma launch, March 2012

In 2012, I presented my PhD research in the European Parliament.

Don't miss Iptegrity!  RSS/ Bookmark is the website of Dr Monica Horten. She is a policy analyst specialising in Internet governance & European policy, including platform accountability. She is a published author & Visiting Fellow at the London School of Economics & Political Science. She served as an independent expert on the Council of Europe Committee on  Internet Freedom. She has worked on CoE, EU and UNDP funded projects in eastern Europe and the Caucasus. In a voluntary capacity, she has led UK citizen delegations to the European Parliament. She was shortlisted for The Guardian Open Internet Poll 2012.

Iptegrity  offers expert insights into Internet policy (and related issues on Brexit). Iptegrity has a core readership in the Brussels policy community, and has been cited in the media. Please acknowledge Iptegrity when you cite or link.  For more, see IP politics with integrity is made available free of charge for  non-commercial use, Please link-back & attribute Monica Horten. Thank you for respecting this.

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The politics of copyright

A Copyright Masquerade - How corporate lobbying threatens online freedoms

'timely and provocative' Entertainment Law Review