A KIDDERMINSTER musician and trade unionist has hit out at claims a proposed new copyright directive would ‘censor the internet’.

MEPs voted against the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market following a debate the European Parliament yesterday (July 5).

Musician’s Union Midlands regional organiser Stephen Brown said the aim of the proposal was to ensure fairer royalties to artists and giving them more control over how and where their work is used online.

Critics, including Kidderminster-based MEP James Carver who voted against the directive, fear it would give power to huge tech companies and enable them to delete any content – including legitimate material – from the web.

He added that this legislation was “typical of the European Union”.

But Mr Brown, who is a member of Wyre Forest Labour, said performers such as himself received very little in return for their original work and argued the vote was defeated to protect interests of multinationals rather than stop them.

He said: “This is not about censoring the internet at all. The Musician’s Union has been lobbying and working with the EU parliament on this issue for years.

“The reason this vote was rejected was because multinational platforms strong armed their right wing mates in EU Parliament to deny people like me fair rewards for our online works so the same multinationals can keep most the revenue.

“Does he (James Carver) actually know how much we earn off a download on these platforms? We get just 0.003 cents.

“He’s just voted for the status quo and throws out spurious claims about why by blaming the EU.”

The vote was lost by 318 to 278 and the legislation is now on hold and will go before a full debate in September.