YouTube CEO Warns Of Dire Consequences Should Europe's Article 13 Pass

Susan Wojcicki, YouTube CEO, wrote in an op-ed published Monday that if the European Parliament passes its controversial Article 13 copyright directive, it “will create unintended consequences that will have a profound impact on the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people.”

Article 13 wants platforms to enforce copyright infringement uploaded to their platform by users. It passed Parliament, but the final text may still be changed ahead of a final vote scheduled for January.

In her op-ed, Wojcicki cites the popular song “Despacito,” which may contain a wide number of copyrights. Although youTube pays record labels and other rights-holders to host their songs on its platform, Wojcicki warns that other unknown copyrights may force YouTube to proactively pull it and other songs from its platform as a precautionary measure.



Going further, she writes: “Multiply that risk with the scale of YouTube, where more than 400 hours of video are uploaded every minute and the potential liabilities could be so large no company could take on such a financial risk.”

The op-ed follows an update that Wojcicki sent to YouTube creators last month, where she argued that Article 13 “poses a threat to both your livelihood and your ability to share your voice with the world.”

She went on to ask European creators to petition the European Parliament to tweak the language of the legislation.

YouTube, with its massive scale, would be at particularly high risk if the legislation passes as written. The company says that videos from 35 million EU channels would be at risk of being removed from the platform.

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