Monday, December 17, 2018

The Article 13 Trialogue and Google’s Magic Grits | MUSIC • TECHNOLOGY • POLICY


             Perhaps the laws of physics cease to exist on your stove!  Were these magic grits?
I mean, did you buy them from the same guy who sold Jack his beanstalk beans?

From My Cousin Vinny, written by Dale Launer

After Google’s stunning defeat on the plenary vote on the Directive on Copyright in the Single Digital Market in the European Parliament, they had to go to plan B on their lobbying and public messaging tactics.  Which was a problem because plan B is the same as plan A–bots, fakery and online disinformation tactics.  Not to mention goofy pronouncements from YouTube President and Sergey Brin’s ex-sister in law Susan Wojcicki and the rebarbative Lyor Cohen.

How do we know of this Plan B problem?  Because notwithstanding the facts that fewer than 1,000 warm bodies turned out for Google’s Day of Rage protesting its embarrassing loss and that this reality check was entirely at odds with the tens of thousands of spam emails their cut outs sent to Members of the European Parliament–notwithstanding these facts, Google wants everyone to believe that an online petition with not 100, not 1000, not even 10,000 signatures was for reals.  Nope–that online petition supposedly had  four million signatures.

Nobody believes this, just like nobody believed the spam.  Why?  Because it could be gamed, just like Google’s other online campaigns that turned out to be largely fake.  And credible journalists determined that the spam campaign on Article 13 was fake.  Volker Rieck and David Lowery also exposed how Google uses astroturf front groups to “push its views”.


More importantly, many of the MEPs on the receiving end of the spam believed it was fake.  My bet is that they believe the millions of signatures are fake, too.

We need to keep fighting in Europe because this is as close as our community has ever come to overturning Google’s safe harbor in any country, but you have to ask if they are snarfing down some magic grits at the Googleplex.


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