The European Commission has revised the copyright directive that would have banned caching and slowed down the Internet.
The news of the revision was released late Friday and legitimises caching by making it exempt from the new regulations designed to protect the copyright of content on the Web.
The new wording of the directive adds "those which facilitate the effective functioning of transmission system" to the exceptions.
Caching stores temporary copies of Internet content on a local server or PC, preventing the user from repeatedly having to access content from its source. This speeds up Internet access and prevents traffic bottlenecks.
Draft legislation from the European Parliament proposed in February called for the banning of all 'non essential' copying of information, suggesting that it will protect authors. While caching is not essential, it is widely believed that without it the Internet would effectively grind to a halt.see Newswire 8 February
The proposed legislation was heavily criticised by ISPs, cache software developers and industry groups who held it up as another example of politicians making laws on issues they do not understand.
The Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA) was just one organisation that urged the European Parliament to amend the legislation to permit caching, pointing out that the legislation would not benefit the artists and authors it was designed to protect as it would hinder them from getting their own copyrighted work viewed by a wide audience.
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