Great news this week for all who want global internet freedom. After an 18-month campaign – including four separate pushes by Avaaz members – the Italian Communications Authority (AgCom) has abandoned its attempt to bring in repressive copyright rules. Like similar laws planned in the United States and across Europe, the new regime would have bowed to corporate interests, allowing the shutdown of servers and websites without proper judicial process.
A huge effort by campaigners in Italy inspired more than 500,000 emails, social media messages and petition signatures opposing the move. Activists lobbied politicians and the politically compromised AgCom. Opposition parties came together to oppose the bill, which was backed by powerful political allies of the disgraced ex-president, Silvio Berlusconi.
Campaigners are delighted. The principle is now established that such important rules must come from Italy's parliament – not the Communications Authority, with its party-nominated members. "The Authority bosses are changing now, so the whole internet regulation process is going to start from scratch," said Avaaz campaigner Luca Nicotra. This offers fresh and exciting opportunity for web liberty campaigners.
Further reading: How Italy mobilised to save the internet (in Italian) from AgCom.
Take action: Help save the internet from CISPA, a US bill that would destroy privacy – sign this Avaaz petition.