On 6 October, telecoms ministers formally rejected the parliament’s key amendment – the now infamous Amendment 138.
France-France-based internet freedom pressure group La Quadrature du Net calls the compromise text « useless legalese » that essentially only restates existing rights protections and does nothing to explicitly rule out internet blocking.
« Amendment 138 will instead be replaced by a weak provision that does not carry any new important safeguard for citizen’s freedoms, » said spokesman for the group, Jeremie Zimmerman.
« This decision was taken consciously by rapporteur Catherine Trautmann, in order not to risk a confrontation with the Council [representing the member states] and to quickly finish with the telecoms package. »
Mr Zimmerman said pressure from France and other member states has been fierce.
« Ministers of member states, who want to be able to regulate the net without interference from the judiciary, were rushing to kill amendment 138 and put an end to the negotiations. »