Italy Wikipedia shuts down in protest at EU copyright law
| Updated Jul 03, 2018 at 4:33pm
Italian Wikipedia blocked readers from its pages on Tuesday in protest over the future of EU online copyright law.
Critics say the rules, due to be voted on this week, could put an end to memes and remixes, and require platforms to pay for linking to news.
Instead of an encyclopaedia entry, visitors to any page on the Italian language Wikipedia were greeted with a statement about the upcoming vote.
The editors wrote that "Wikipedia itself would be at risk of closing".
"If the proposal is approved, it may be impossible to share a newspaper article on social networks or find it on a search engine," it said.
English-language users of the site were not cut off from its articles - but instead saw a large banner advert urging readers to contact their European representatives, or MEPs, ahead of the vote.
Wikipedia is one of the most visited sites on the internet, currently ranked fifth in the world by traffic ranking site Alexa.
The organisation has been a fierce opponent of the EU's proposed directive on copyright in the digital single market, calling it "a serious threat to our mission".
Two particular parts of the new rules - articles 11 and 13 - have been the focus of much criticism online.
Article 13 has been the most controversial, requiring websites to enforce copyright, even on content uploaded by users.
SOURCE: BBC NEWS