I'm in Strasbourg, lobbying hard. Updates soon, but was able to talk to Axel Voss, the main guy behind the current (bad) versions of and . Doing my best to .

Lessons from today:
- Pro-Art11/Art13 MEPs do not know how copyright law works (no surprises there, the copyright law is a mess!)
- Wikimedia Commons is a very good example of a service that could suffer very much.
- As during , MEPs are not entirely against sitting down and discussing the issues.

Oh, and yes, I used / as an example of services that would get hit hard with / . The Fediverse is helping to too now! :)

Another important take-away from my meetings already: calling MEPs is way more effective than e-mailing them.

E-mailing MEPs with a standard e-mail from a template can actually be counter-productive.

If you can, please *call* your MEPs. You can find your MEP here:

If you'd rather e-mail, please write two-three paragraphs in your own words, from your e-mail address. Even if it's not as slick as the template, it will work way better!

People like Julia Reda could be fixing the underlying problems of copyright law in EU. I could be focusing on helping journalists stay safe and uncover corruption and organized crime.

Many other people could be spending their time way more productively.

Instead, we need to focus on this bullcrap so that people who can't even into Internets don't break our main creative outlet, communication channel, our main knowledge base.

Because Axel Springer told them to.


But I guess that the basics need to be taught and discussed over and over and over, because otherwise they become forgotten and, surprisingly, stop being basic in turn.

History likes going in circles.

@phoe but but but we taught them all of this 6 years ago during ! It was literally almost the same!

Well, to be honest some remember, and are strongly on our side. Polish MEPs Thun, Boni are great on this. Not in the least because they *remember* ACTA, and learned from it.

@rysiek It doesn't really matter it was almost the same. People don't learn that well. And the ones who are taught often disappear and go do other things, and new ones are elected instead of them, who do not remember, do not know, and need to be taught again and anew.

@rysiek I always wondered if those standard template mails where a good thing (instead of as you say, using your own words).

Thanks for sharing this insight!

@Ilja sometimes they might be. But it's tricky.

It's *always* better to just send an e-mail with your own text.

Standard template mails or your own words. Which would you pay attention to if you got 100 or 10000 of them?

But you said before that it can't do any harm...

@Wolf480pl I said e-mailing your MEP can't do any harm, that's true. Apparently I was wrong, and in some circumstances e-mailing your MEP with a template e-mail coming from an automated service might actually be a bit harmful.

We all learn.

@rysiek that’s good to hear. thank you for putting in so much legwork on everyone’s behalf! <3

@rysiek thank you for fighting the good fight.

@rysiek I made the mistake of participating in the email spam problem, but mostly because I'm not sure I'll still be able to call the MEPs in time.

It's good to know and somewhat unexpected that MEPs don't just count pro/con emails but actually read the text.

@ente their assistants definitely do. ;)

Thank you for sending the e-mail nonetheless. It's important people get involved and it shows the MEPs that there's interest.

But people will have to re-think e-mail campaigs in the future.

On my way to a meeting with a few MEPs. Wish me luck.

These are mostly sympathethic to our cause, but perhaps need a few strong arguments. Hopefully, I can provide that.

But this time try explaining without whisky. Otherwise they might get distracted. 😉

But seriously, this is something great you are doing. Good luck!

the experience you made and what you learned from would be a great theme for a blogpost ;-)

And this concludes our tour of Strasbourg and its labirynth of halls and procedures.

I am on the train back home. I would have stayed longer and worked on more, but could not. :/

This is not the end of the fight. The vote is way too close to call. Every MEP counts. I will be calling them from the train, I would even call them from the plane if it were an option.

Your calls are working. MEPs are changing their minds. I saw this first hand.

You have the power!

I have so many things I need to write about after this trip. Please poke me if I don't deliver in a few days!

@webmind @jeroenpraat which table?
You mean, discussing issues? It was always open. Everybody just hoped reality and rationality will win in the JURI commission. We did contact the JURI commission members and talk to them, but they decided (majority of 1 vote!) to go with the crazy option.

Hence the current shitstorm.


I'd love to have proper discussions with MEP's, but all these actions feel so very rushed rushed. Everytime I hear about it, it's we need action -now- and soon it's too late.

That's neither a modus of working or of cooperation.

@webmind that's true, but Wikimedia, EDRi and others were working behind the scenes all of this time. The information was there. Look at Julia Reda's blog and the dates of blogposts about this.

It's just that people seem to start caring when it's very close to a very bad outcome. It's hard to galvanize people unless shit is *looming*.

@rysiek @webmind bad shit is being planned all the time. Everyone can't work on all of it. Effective organizing requires presenting the most crucial information in the simplest and clearest possible way, so you can galvanize enough people, at the critical times when it will make a difference to the outcome.



You also wear people out I think like this. I don't want to critisise edri and the likes. What I want is more transparant government.

To me this feels exhausting

@webmind @strypey sure. But give me a working alternative and I'll jump on it.

Julia had been writing about this for ages. Asta I remember was getting people to take part in these consultations at CCC 3 or 4 years ago! And then JURI commission decided to ignore that input because the other side lobbied so hard and with a plan.

So tell me, what will work better, honestly, we need a better way! But we have limited resources, and are working against companies that have *unlimited* resources.

@webmind @strypey @rysiek

Most importantly, don’t burn yourselves out.

I‘m still mad about SOPA/PIPA/CETA/ACTA/NSA/the police state/... and I feel shit is being thrown at us and we’re collectively not moving in the right direction as a species and that’s terrible. And yet life goes on somehow.

@ente @webmind @strypey yes, and every now and then theres an emergency, like now.

I would much rather have no emergencies. I would much rather be able to do calm long-term planning on improving the state of the world.

But some people have way more resources and a different plan. And unless we start organizing better and more, they will win.

@rysiek @webmind @strypey I know, and yet I often feel incapable of mobilising resources before it’s almost too late. And that’s a big problem and I think it doesn’t only affect me.

@rysiek @webmind @strypey I think we need more NGOs but at the same time my friends at NGOs work hard and can barely pay their bills. :(

@ente @webmind @strypey we need better funded NGOs. NGOs funded by individual donations, instead of grants.

Grants are terrible. They lock an organization to a specific deliverables over specific time. There's a shit ton of reporting work on it. Shit ton of bureaucracy.

But it's the only thing right now that can fund NGOs on any sane level, sustainably.

We really need to get people to donate to NGOs directly.

@rysiek @webmind @strypey

Maybe a democratic funding system where you can vote which NGO your part goes to but which is funded by taxes can help?

@ente @webmind @strypey we have that, in some sense, in Poland. You can indicate which NGO gets 1% of your tax.

This has however created a few NGOs that focus on getting the 1% instead of on actually doing stuff. Basically this system favours the big ones who can already afford a national media blitz just before the Tax Day.

@notclacke @strypey @webmind there are many more NGOs than political parties, but @rysiek said they have that in Poland and it only benefits the big players, so I guess not.

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