Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Digital Economy Bill

I recently wrote an email to my MP (Alistair Darling) about the Digital Economy Bill (DEB). He wrote back to me requesting more details and so today I sent him this letter. Anyone who wants to send their MP a letter feel free to copy it (this at least is copyright free):

Dear Alistair Darling,

Many thanks for your reply to my email dated Sunday 4th April re: the Digital Economy Bill. I know that the Bill has now come been passed but I want you to understand the serious ramifications and implication that the Bill contains. My main points are below:

  1. The bill seems to have been designed to satisfy the requirements of the entertainment industry and victimise the public. The ‘three-strike’ rule is unfair without proof or evidence by trial. The government does not have the right to say who is guilty without recourse to law. £50,000 fines are also too much when it is almost impossible to say who is liable when an internet connection is shared.
  2. Making ISPs spy on their customers again in support of the entertainment industry is heinous. They don’t have the right to record what I look at online, just incase. It will also have a detrimental effect upon shops, cafes and restaurants offering open public wifi. The UK Government should be leading us into a Britain where access to the internet is enabled for all, this will seriously stunt any growth in this area.
  3. There is nothing in the Bill about stimulating the digital economy. We need everyone connected to the net via cheap, fast broadband. This will stimulate growth and commerce. Also as a new writer trying to build up a public profile I work and create new media stimulated by digital access. Copyright rules can get in the way of this ability to create new things.

I really don’t believe that the Bill has been given due consideration and it was pushed through without rigourous debate. We have a great wealth of tech-savvy creators in this country, individuals who understand the future that the net will give us far better than politicians. I don’t believe you’ve listen to these people enough and have instead merely taken into account the wants of big business.

Sincerely yours,

Adam J. Shardlow


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I'll let you know if he replies.