UK Gov't Insists That File Sharers Won't Be Kicked Off The Internet

from the well,-it's-a-start dept

While there are still some concern about what the UK gov't is planning concerning ISPs in relation to the recording industry, reports are coming out that kicking file sharers off the internet with a "3 strikes" policy is off the table -- at least according to David Lammy, the Intellectual Property Minister in the UK. That's a good sign, and fits with what the EU Parliament has said. The full government report is expected later this week, though no one has yet explained to us why the government is stepping in to what is effectively a business model issue, and trying to force a different industry (ISPs) to help deal with a problem created by an industry (the recording industry) that has spent a decade trying to hold back new business models that would solve any "problem" it faces.

Meanwhile, of course, Lammy's comments have (not surprisingly) upset the recording industry. Folks at BPI are particularly pissed off that Lammy compared file sharing to swiping a bar of soap in a hotel room you rented (i.e., a minor issue, not something to arrest someone over). BPI's representative claims he's "appalled" that the IP minister would say such a thing, and even says it shows a lack of understanding about intellectual property. Generally, if you're pissing off the established recording industry folks, you're probably doing something right these days.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Douglas Gresham, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 3:57am

    A small positive amongst a larger worry

    While I would welcome this outbreak of sanity, we're still clearly on the wrong track if we have an Intellectual Property Minister at all - that indicates not looking at IP as a means to an end (increased innovation and creativity) but as a means in and of itself - until government starts looking at this from the correct point of view, I worry that we're only going to the interventionalist and protectionist point of view in any discussion on the matter.

    Oh well, baby steps.

     

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  2.  
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    Twinrova, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 4:22am

    Right. And I've a bridge to sell you.

    Isn't this the same UK gov't which turns around minutes later and recants its previous decisions?

    Anyone in the UK who believes this deserves my latest offer on a fantastic bridge. It's centuries old, has a drawbridge, and is often mistaken as "London bridge".

    Place your offer here →

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 4:28am

    from the we want to know everything department.

    Generally, if you're pissing off the established recording industry folks, you're probably doing something right these days.

    that made me chuckle ty mike.

    now concerning:
    though no one has yet explained to us why the government is stepping in to what is effectively a business model issue, and trying to force a different industry (ISPs) to help deal with a problem created by an industry (the recording industry) that has spent a decade trying to hold back new business models that would solve any "problem" it faces.

    that doesn't surprise me much of the UK Govt, i think it goes hand in hand with the Uk's special privacy policies, somehow i feel the main goal for is data collection, and not to "protect" the recording Industry.

     

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  4.  
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    Analmouse Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 4:56am

    @Right. And I've a bridge to sell you.

    What!. You guys wanna sell it back to us?, our no refunds policy is non negotiable i'm afraid.

    You could try palming it off on some other mug but i don't rate your chances of finding another sucker!

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 5:00am

    Re: Right. And I've a bridge to sell you.

    Hang on, wasn't it an American who bough London Bridge?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Bridge_(Lake_Havasu_City)

    Oh well...

     

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  6.  
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    music lover, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 5:46am

    hypocrites

    All you "tech" luvies are a bunch of hypocrites.

    Your happy to see the music IP get stolen, because your the parasites that are benefitting, but If the govt won't protect, Music IP, what makes you think anyone will protect your IP, when you need it?

    It not just a trade issue, because the law is being broken, and ISP's and various tech co's have built their business model on the lawlessness they have created.

     

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  7.  
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    ukredbear, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 5:47am

    Re: Right. And I've a bridge to sell you.

    From Wikipedia:

    In 1967, the Common Council of the City of London placed the bridge on the market and began to look for potential buyers. Council member Ivan Luckin had put forward the idea of selling the bridge, and recalled: "They all thought I was completely crazy when I suggested we should sell London Bridge when it needed replacing." On 18 April 1968, Rennie's bridge was sold to the American entrepreneur Robert P. McCulloch of McCulloch Oil for US$2,460,000. The claim that McCulloch believed mistakenly that he was buying the more impressive Tower Bridge was denied by Luckin in a newspaper interview. [8]

    So no deceit the guy said he knew what he was buying i.e. not TOWER Bridge :P

     

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  8.  
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    anon, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 6:03am

    Re: hypocrites

    I don't know if you're trying to be sarcastic or not...

    Either way, most "tech" is merely a proper application of math, which is not under IP (not to say that many tech companies try to patent or otherwise protect simple concepts such as stacks and recursive properties).

    other than that, many of the best and brightest of the tech industry are involved in Free Licence and Open Source Software. The furthest that most Open Source Programs go for IP is they require a nod to the original project and that ensuing projects also be open.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 9:37am

    Re: hypocrites

    Who's stealing what now?

     

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  10.  
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    Suds, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 10:02am

    The hotel soap analogy...

    The soap is there for the guest. It is provided and therefore presumed that it will be used. It is there for the taking whether a guest uses it or not, since really - if you used it, who'd want it after? It's a physical good that diminishes with use or is thrown unwrapped into a suitcase upon checkout.

    It's a disposable good that has value to the guest, the hotel, and the maker of the soap if it's nice (I've gotten some sweet soaps from hotels!).

    But don't think for one second that the cost of such goods isn't already figured into the cost of the hotel room.

     

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  11.  
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    Drew, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:02pm

    Soap analogy part deux

    Just to add to the comments from 'Suds', swiping a bar of hotel soap is not the same as digitally distributing MP3s. The better analogy would be that you get a very expensive, exclusive bar of designer soap (which was indeed part of your hotel room cost), and then you make millions of identical bars for free to distribute on the street in front of the hotel. The argument from the music industry is that the free mass distribution of what someone originally had to pay for causes the value of the original item to drop.

    Where I think they fail, is in recognizing the distinction between selling the MUSIC and selling the DATA. They need to stop thinking that their industry exists to push physical objects, and start thinking about distributing intangible sound. Sure, you can't control the distribution of sound once it's out in the market, but perhaps they ought to restructure the way that they spend money to compensate for that, rather than standing at the door of the hotel with a soap-sniffing dog.

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 8:55pm

    Re: hypocrites

    What the hell is this weirdo rambling on about?

     

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  13.  
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    Real Estate Search, Mar 13th, 2009 @ 3:31am

    nice.

    Very nice.

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    symonds, Mar 13th, 2009 @ 3:32am

    nice.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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