September 16, 2021
The Growing Tensions Between Digital Media Platforms and Copyright Enforcement
With the rise of “new media” platforms reliant on user-generated content, tensions over the use of copyrighted material are at an all-time high. In a new insight, Tech Policy Analyst Juan Londoño explains the challenges of regulations intended to police copyright infringement, primarily the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, on digital platforms. Specifically, Londoño contends the regulatory focus on expediency over accuracy and an unclear definition of fair use of copyrighted content fails platforms, creators, and users.
- Pressure from copyright holders combined with aggressive infringement-flagging algorithms and significant penalties under current regulations push platforms to take down content—often before infringement has been proven.
- While there are legitimate concerns regarding copyright infringement online, current regulation incentivizes over-blocking content in order to avoid fines; this tactic is alienating content creators and limiting free speech and innovation.
- Moreover, recent reform proposals aim to increase platform liability; this will make platforms even more cautious, exacerbating current problems and seriously limiting the content that has made these platforms a novel means of entertainment.