So, yesterday, the European Union Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market passed. This is a European Union directive that is designed to limit how copyrighted content is shared on online platforms. EU directives are a form of legislation that set an objective for member states to achieve. For two years, institutions, companies, and individuals have fought hard to scrap this directive, but to no avail. It was passed yesterday, so one of these days, it will be implemented.

What does that mean? Well, two articles are problematic for EU bloggers like me: Article 11 and Article 13. Article 13 is the least problematic for my blog. Article 13 requires online platforms to filter or remove copyrighted material from their websites. The Directive on Copyright would make online platforms and aggregator sites liable for copyright infringements. this applies to, for example, social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. It's also known as the "meme ban," as memes, gifs, etc. tend to be made with copyrighted material.

Blogger, my blog hosting platform, will have to put filters in place as well, although I have no idea how they will do this yet. I doubt they have any idea yet either, to be honest. So, this will affect me but probably not you, as the reader, so much. I might have to fight against censorship, but you won't notice.

What you will notice is the effect of Article 11. Article 11 is also known as “the link tax.” The article intends to get news aggregator sites, such as Google News, to pay publishers for using snippets of their articles on their platforms. Press publications “may obtain fair and proportionate remuneration for the digital use of their press publications by information society service providers,” the Directive states.

There are a lot of question marks. How much of an article has to be shared before a platform has to pay the publisher? The Directive states that platforms won’t have to pay if they’re sharing “mere hyperlinks which are accompanied by individual words,” but since most links are accompanied by more than a couple of words it seems that many platforms and news aggregators will have to either invest in a license to share or will shut down.

I share a lot of news articles related to archaeology and various other pieces of interest, and link back to the source. I won't be able to do this anymore under Article 11 and I don't have time to create 100% unique content for you every day. So, I will have to figure out how to deal with this. A license will be unaffordable, I'm sure, so two options I am looking at are

1. posting less regularly, like once or twice a week, with 100% original content.
2. inviting guest bloggers who are willing to produce 100% original content to fill in the days in-between so I can still post once a day (or near that ratio). Needless to say, this option depends on if there is interest to do so. If you are someone who would be interested in doing this--and this content can literally be anything from articles, to art, to vlogs--email me at

Back to Article 11, this will mean that our favorite news aggregators like The archaeology News Network will disappear as well (completely, or just in the EU), and this is such a shame. Google's News tab? Gone as well, at least for the EU and perhaps globally.

The Directive does contain an exemption for “legitimate private and non-commercial use of press publications by individual users,” so it doesn’t look like individuals sharing links on social platforms will have to dip into their pockets. But even this is open to interpretation.

I am assuming the ban won't be implemented retroactively. If it is, I will have to go through my blog and delete a lot of content. I won't do that, for now.

I can't figure out yet if the Directive will be enforced from this moment on. I'm researching that. So, for now, I am going to be on the safe side and either re-use original content or post things I am sure are unaffected by either Article. I might still post about archaeological finds, but I'll have to create the actual copy myself and then link you to the article, which is...not as much fun. I'm sorry about that, but I'm fairly certain I can't afford to be fined for breaking the Directive.

If you have original content lying around that you are willing for me to put up, email me. If I think it will be useful for the 700-or-so people visiting this blog every day, we'll work out a bio, backlinks to wherever you want, and a way for us to organize this. I can't pay you. Baring The Aegis has been a daily labor of love and devotion for me for seven years. I don't make money off it myself and I can't lose money on it either.

Please bear with me while I figure out what the Directive means for Baring The Aegis. I really hope I can figure out something that works with my schedule and which means regular content for you!