HADOPI - towards endoctrination of children at school

In a recent press release entitled HADOPI - proprietary propaganda at school? April showed its concern regarding an article suggesting setbacks in the educational and commercial neutrality of school.

Such fears were relevant since the Parliament rejected on Thursday the 2nd of April 2009 an amendment of sheer common sense proposed by the GDR Member of Parliament Martine Billard who wanted to balance the article by presenting also the legal distribution of contents and works under open or free licenses.

The Member of Parliament Mrs Martine Billard had indeed presented two sub-amendments aiming at correcting article 9 bis. These were the sub-amendment 527 and the sub-amendment 528.

They were discussed Thursday but were rejected following the unfavourable opinion of both the bearer of the bill Franck Riester (UMP) and the Secretary of State Christine Albanel. Here are the details:

Mr the President: I'm being presented with amendment n°95, which is itself the object of amendment n°527. The floor is yielded to Mr Franck Riester, in order to defend amendment n° 95.

Mr Franck Riester, bearer [of the bill]: This is a re-wording amendment.

Mr the President: The floor is yielded to Mrs Martine Billard, to defend sub-amendment n°527.

Mrs Martine Billard: As long as we don't try, we're sure to fail! This is why I'm presenting this sub-amendment. Maybe Mrs Marland-Militello will support me again.

Mr Philippe Gosselin: You are right: nothing is inevitable, there is only renounciation!

Mrs Martine Billard: Article 9 bis provides that students will receive information on the dangers of downloading on cultural creation, as part of the computing and internet diploma for middle school students. So be it, but since we still haven't the report that was expected from the DADVSI law, the debate remains whole as to ascertain its result.

This is why this sub-amendment aims at underlining that this information shall be "neutral and plural" - which is not yet the case today - and that it will present "also the legal distribution of contents and works under open or free licenses". If I insist on such licenses as Art Libre or Creative Commons, it is because there constitute an excellent way to legally distribute culture and to share culture between individuals.

It is important to explain that these licenses exist. Moreover, Mrs the bearer of the bill recognized it, by telling us she had used a work under a Creative Commons license while omitting to mention its author. This is a relatively recent license, which therefore need to be better known in order to avoid that internet users use involuntary works that use such a license without mentioning its author's name, when it is the main requirement of that license. This sub-amendment is therefore essential to ensure the respect of copyright law in the case of distribution of works for which the authors ask for the respect of their moral rights without demanding financial compensation. It is also essential because I maintain that the opening up of the cultural practices of our youth requires the use of such licenses. Didn't today's major artists start in a more modest way?

It is true that Internet constitutes for new artists a fantastic distribution tool. It is therefore were important to explain to the younger ones that they must respect copyright by not downloading illegally pieces of work but that they can very well use open and free licenses.

Mr the President: What is the opinion of the commission on this sub-amendment?

Mr Franck Riester, bearer [of the bill]: Ms Billard expressed longly her point of view but the elements she proposes aren't in the purview of the law (Ms exclaims), but rather in an application decree. Ms the Secretary of State, maybe could you highlight to Mr the Secretary of State of Education these concerns, but I insist, Ms Billard: This proposal of yours shouldn't be dealt with by law. The commission therefore expresses a unfavourable opinion.

Mr Patrick Bloche: Does Ms Billard's proposal disturb you?

Mr the President: What is the opinion of the government?

Ms Christine Albanel, Secretary of State for Culture: Same opinion.

Sub-amendment n°527 is rejected.

Amendment n°95 is adopted.

You can find it interesting to read Alexis Kauffman's reaction "Civil disobedience coming to school?".