EU, Copyright, taxes, and social media: A protectionist idea that will not save journalism.

An excellent and thorough discussion on EU’s “snippet tax” can be found here on Baekdal, but I would like to add something to the discourse.

If European media outlet think they can punish Google and “reclaim” ad revenue they erroneously blame Google and Facebook for “stealing”, they are sadly mistaken. Google can create or buy up a wire service or outlet and then just bypass having to bother with the press entirely. They can drop any links to media outlets, and it will be outlets — not social media — that suffer by the shut out. Like cable channels that ran re-runs of network programs until they gained enough money and audiences to create their own, Facebook and Google no longer are dependent on news outlets.

Western European news outlets are playing chicken and it is a game they will lose. It is too little, too late. Western Europe sticks to old patriarchal traditions, looks down on change, and when they do not adapt, they lobby the government for nonsensical laws that never solve the problem.

This was a problem that should have been addressed about twenty years ago when Yahoo, Netscape, and MySpace dominated cyberspace. Google and Facebook can vanish and be replaced with another breed that can bypass the old system with a different method.

Media outlets are at a crisis globally, and judging by their Mommy Government solutions, they are incapable of solving a thing on their own…