Monday, 12 April 2010

The Digital Economy Bill Acts Up

Apologies in advance - this post is meant to act as a repository for some of the more interesting responses to the Digital Economy Bill being passed into law, now the Digital Economy Act.  I'm planning on dumping a few links on here and following up with more of them as I find them.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive post in its current guise.

During the second and third hearings in the House of Commons, there was a great deal of interest in the proceedings of the House by people watching BBC Parliament, iPlayer, the Parliament webpage, and via Twitter.  Needless to say, the 'wash-up' was more of a stitch-up than anything else, lacking detailed and sustained debate.  The back-bench rebels were unable to defeat the party whips.  Many MPs voted despite not being present in the House of commons discussions - namely they were asked to vote in a specific direction by their party without even knowing what they were voting on.  For evidence of this, see this letter from MP Stephen Timms in which he confuses Interent Protocol for Intellectual Property! - He was instrumental in rebutting criticisms of the Bill throughout the third hearing. Democracy?

Quite a few interesting tools, posts and sites emerged around the political discussion:

Letters and responses:
  • ISPs like TalkTalk, BE and O2 were critical or muted with regards to the outcome via their company blogs.
  • Member of the Music Union, Steve Lawson, fired off this angry letter to said union.
  • Twitter was full of users announcing that they did not recognise the Bill - powered en masse by this site: http://whatdebill.org
  • Several online petitions and open letters against the bill emerged.  Here's one via GoPetition.  
  • Here's a signed letter via Tumbled Logic which amassed more than 650 signatures in a very short period of time.
  • The Open Rights Group decided to fight back by organising local forums for protest and direct action
Data mash-ups

South Shields Digital Economy Bill No Show Miliband

More to follow...

If you find any interesting links be sure to comment or reach me via Twitter

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