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Righting copywrongs - we need you to #SaveTheLink

In November, we issued our call to action. In December, we set out precisely why the PR and communications community across Europe has to come together to #SaveTheLink. Today, we are asking for your help.

Our colleagues at OpenMedia (and campaigners around the world) have done some exceptional work so far. The problem we are all facing can be summarises in two stark sentences. Effectively, the link tax is a proposal to apply a new copyright to the snippets of text that automatically accompany news links. It will mean licensing fees and unaffordable contracts for sites that share news.

We do not want a world where our favourite websites are stripped of links or entirely forced out of business; we certainly do not want the internet as we know it to undergo such fundamentally flawed changes; and – as an industry brimming with innovation and creativity – we cannot ignore a situation that would entrench the position of major websites at the detriment of smaller publishers and smaller news sites. This is not some sort of abstract campaign or solely of interest to internet freedom campaigners: this has real, concrete outcomes for us.

Speaking directly to some of the points members have raised around Brexit: this is no less of a problem for us in the UK. If the link tax is left unchallenged and goes ahead, we can expect similar laws or standards in the UK. Even putting this aside, this will change how we access European platforms and websites. Consequentially, as OpenMedia put it, “internet companies won't create one Internet for Europe and one for the UK”.

Clicking below will take you through to OpenMedia’s MEP tool: please tell your representative (in your own words if you have time or using the draft message if you are in a rush) to #SaveTheLink.