The eYouGuide

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the-eyouguide

altThe gloriously named eYouGuide is the new effort by the EU to "educate" the masses on "their rights" in regards to intellectual property and things internet. This was a result of an initiative launched in 2007 by the EU to set people straight on their "rights" online. CMU digs deeper to some of the more stern warnings on the site.

The eYouguide states that copyright exists "to promote the progress of knowledge and arts", and warns that in some European countries copyright law may "provide civil or criminal sanctions even for infringements of copyright for non-commercial purposes". It says that civil sanctions "may involve paying damages or just an injunction ordering you to stop the infringing behaviour", while criminal sanctions, normally reserved for infringement for commercial gain, may include "the seizure of devices containing protected work, fines and in some extreme cases also imprisonment"."

So there, that's clarifed it for all of us right? To me it reads like a pretty strong threat with little on the specifics of what you should do to avoid such sanctions. There is really nothing that specifically speaks to those thorny issues like personal copying of material or the matter of where your site is hosted. In short, the eYouGuide is far more about telling consumers things rather than answering their queries. One issue fairly important to bloggers is whether or not you can be served with an arrest warrant if you offend some law in another EU country. Until such thorny issues are full explained its probably still best if you host your site outside the EU.