Online rights - data protection and copyright
The digital revolution and the internet have changed our lives, creating a world without borders and opening new opportunities every day. The S&Ds stand for a Europe at the cutting edge of technological development. We want to eliminate the digital divide and defend fundamental rights in the digital environment.
The S&D Group has long campaigned for EU protection for citizens' personal data. The importance of data protection is clear, in a Europe that is increasingly interconnected and digital, where the e-world is commonplace in commerce, communication, information, recreation and relations between the citizen, companies and governments. At the same time, we need to consider the opportunities for new businesses, new business models and the internal market.
While we support the legal protection of intellectual property in the digital era and acknowledge the danger of counterfeit goods – without exaggerating the threats – we believe the internet should remain a place of freedom. Unlocking creative potential should take on board all of society's concerns, not just those of industry.
With proposals currently being debated in the European Parliament, we are working for high levels of data protection across Europe to guarantee legal protection for individuals and to establish clear duties and rules for those processing personal data, especially if they are also transferring the data onwards, particularly outside the EU. These principles will inform our views as the proposals go forward.
Copyright laws should accommodate competing sets of rights (including the fundamental right of access to information and culture, and fair remuneration for artists), be able to cope with rapidly shifting technologies and new media, and support new economic models.
Our strong stance on copyright and data protection led us to call for the rejection of the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). We support European innovation and led the campaign for an EU-wide patent which, after decades of negotiations, will greatly simplify the way innovators can apply for patents to protect their work. We reject attempts to force internet service providers to install systems for filtering electronic communication.