AGCOM Measures against freedom of expression. Question for written answer to the Commission Rule 117 Niccolò Rinaldi (ALDE)


ALDE Party

Subject:  AGCOM — Online copyright infringement
On 25 July 2013 the Italian Communications Regulatory Authority, AGCOM, opened to public consultation the draft regulation on the protection of copyright on electronic communications networks and procedures for the implementation thereof pursuant to Legislative Decree No 70 of 9 April 2003. Annex B of the regulation sets out the powers that the Italian authority intends to grant itself in order to prosecute online copyright infringement.The resolution will in fact enable AGCOM to block — automatically and without any prior requirement to establish guilt, through the obligatory cooperation of Internet Service Providers — access to websites, blogs, online newspapers and other sources of information, including those outside Italian jurisdiction, and/or to remove content from the Internet if it suspects copyright infringement.

Freedom of expression and information, guaranteed by Article 11 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, are seriously threatened by this measure.

— In view of the above, can the Commission, to which the AGCOM regulation in question was notified by the Italian authorities on 2 September 2013 (Notification No 2013/496/I), say whether it intends to take any action, and what form that action will take? What comments does it intend to make pursuant to Article 8(2) of Directive 98/34/EC?

— As guardian of the Charter of Fundamental Rights, will it not take action against the Italian authorities to prevent the spread of the effects of this harmful administrative measure, which could put due respect for freedom of expression, as guaranteed by international human rights instruments and in particular by Articles 6 and 7 of the EU Treaty and the Charter of Fundamental Rights, at risk within the European Union?

Fulvio Sarzana
Studio Legale Roma Sarzana & Associati
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