Proposed EU Broadcast Rules Threaten Video Bloggers

Posted on October 17, 2006

The Times reports that the British government is trying to prevent an EU directive that would require blogs and websites in Europe to comply with broadcasting regulations. The rules would require all blogs and websites in Europe containing video images to be licensed according to The Times.
The European Commission proposal would require websites and mobile phone services that feature video images to conform to standards laid down in Brussels.

Ministers fear that the directive would hit not only successful sites such as YouTube but also amateur "video bloggers" who post material on their own sites. Personal websites would have to be licensed as a "television-like service".
Broadcasting Minister Shaun Woodward told The Times why the new broadcast rules would be so harmful to video bloggers and basically anyone else with a website who wanted to play video clips.
But Shaun Woodward, the Broadcasting Minister, described the draft proposal as catastrophic. He said: "Supposing you set up a website for your amateur rugby club, uploaded some images and added a link advertising your local sports shop. You would then be a supplier of moving images and need to be licensed and comply with the regulations."
More comment from Shaun Woodward can be found in this article from Digital Spy. An AP article also says the new EU broadcast rules could stunt they growth of citizen media. The AP says the European Parliament is likely to vote on the law later this year.

Update: The Times article can also be found here. Slashdot users are also discussing the issue.
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