Given the inclusion in the Draft Law on Sustainable Economy of legislative amendments that affect the free exercise of freedom of expression, information and the right of access to culture through the Internet, journalists, bloggers, users, professionals and creators of the Internet express our firm opposition to the project, and declare that:
- Copyright cannot take precedence over the fundamental rights of citizens, such as the right to privacy, security, the presumption of innocence, effective judicial protection and freedom of expression.
- The suspension of fundamental rights is and must remain the exclusive competence of the judiciary. Not a closure without a sentence. This draft, contrary to the provisions of article 20.5 of the Constitution, puts in the hands of a non-judicial body – an agency under the Ministry of Culture – the power to prevent Spanish citizens from accessing any web page.
- The new legislation will create legal uncertainty throughout the Spanish technology sector, damaging one of the few fields of development and future of our economy, hindering the creation of companies, introducing obstacles to free competition and slowing down its international projection.
- The proposed new legislation threatens new creators and hinders cultural creation. With the Internet and successive technological advances, the creation and broadcasting of content of all kinds has been extraordinarily democratized, which no longer comes predominantly from traditional cultural industries, but from a multitude of different sources.
- Authors, like all workers, have the right to live from their work with new creative ideas, business models and activities associated with their creations. Trying to sustain with legislative changes an obsolete industry that does not know how to adapt to this new environment is neither fair nor realistic. If their business model was based on the control of copies of works and on the Internet it is not possible without violating fundamental rights, they should look for another model.
- We believe that cultural industries need modern, effective, credible and affordable alternatives that are adapted to new social uses in order to survive, rather than limitations that are disproportionate and ineffective for the purpose they claim to pursue.
- The Internet must operate freely and without political interference sponsored by sectors that seek to perpetuate obsolete business models and make it impossible for human knowledge to remain free.
- We demand that the Government guarantee by law the neutrality of the Net in Spain, in the face of any pressure that may occur, as a framework for the development of a sustainable and realistic economy for the future.
- We propose a real reform of intellectual property law aimed at its purpose: returning knowledge to society, promoting the public domain and limiting abuses by managing entities.
- In a democracy, laws and amendments thereto must be adopted after appropriate public debate and prior consultation with all parties involved. It is not acceptable that legislative changes are made that affect fundamental rights in a non-organic law and that deals with another matter.
This manifesto, prepared jointly by several authors, belongs to all and none. It has been published on many websites. If you agree and want to join it, spread it online.