UK May Reconsider COICA-Like Plan To Have ISPs Censor Websites Deemed Infringing

from the good-for-them dept

One part of the Digital Economy Act in the UK was that the UK government could have ISPs ordered to block certain websites deemed to be infringing upon copyrights. This is similar to what the US is trying to pass with COICA (or, already doing via Homeland Security's domain name seizures). However, it appears that at least some folks in the government are realizing this is a dangerous idea, and they're now exploring whether or not it's actually a feasible plan. That's better than just implementing it, of course. Perhaps most interesting is that this "rethink" was driven by a government website which asked the public to "nominate laws and regulations they would like to see abolished." Apparently this was a big one. What a concept: having citizens in a democracy point out what laws they believed were unfair.


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  1.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 2nd, 2011 @ 9:42pm

    "What a concept: having citizens in a democracy point out what laws they believed were unfair."

    After it is removed, with much fan fare, celebration, and back slapping. It will return in another form next year. Only to be passed into law again.

    After the past several months of world events. Egypt being the lastest. I have some words from the past for the british government ...

    "remember remember the 5th of november"

     

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  2.  
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    aperson (profile), Feb 2nd, 2011 @ 10:20pm

    i bet it only won after they deleted all the "stop the war on drugs" answers were deleted.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2011 @ 10:50pm

    Re:

    After it is removed, with much fan fare, celebration, and back slapping. It will return in another form next year. Only to be passed into law again.

    At least the UK maintains the illusion of government representing the peoples' interest. The US has given up all pretext at this point, blatantly obeying the whims of wealthy special interests.

     

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  4.  
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    Jay (profile), Feb 2nd, 2011 @ 11:14pm

    " Perhaps most interesting is that this "rethink" was driven by a government website which asked the public to "nominate laws and regulations they would like to see abolished." "

    ...

    Why the HELL don't we have anything like that here in the United States?!

    Better yet, let's have one website that Congress can gauge the public's view instead of seeing nothing but the wheels of money turning in their minds!

     

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  5.  
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    The eejit (profile), Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 1:32am

    Re:

    Because that would be sensible.

    Nuke it from orbit, it's the onyl way to be sure. That's MY recommendation, anyway - as it's clearly not fit for purpose.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 1:37am

    get angry people

    it worked in canada
    in 4 days almost 400,000 of us signed a petition and failing that you could see some serious shit.

    Sitting on your buts talking here does what tells them what?
    GRRRRRR get angry. ITS a waste a money and they seem bent on wasting it

     

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  7.  
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    Not an electronic Rodent, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 2:32am

    Re: Re:

    At least the UK maintains the illusion of government representing the peoples' interest.
    It may look that way from over there but I think you'll find we can do pointless and draconian police state laws at least as well as the US. A few examples immediately spring to mind:
    No right to silence when arrested. (Current wording "You do not have to say anything but it may harm your defense if you fail to mention when questioned something you later rely on in court")
    Guilty until proven innocent and no right not to incriminate yourself. (As far as I know you must hand over an encryption key when asked by police and failure results in being guilty of obstruction. This to my knowledge applies even if you can prove your machine has been hacked and there would therefore be a reasonable doubt as to whether you even had the encryption key)
    Oh and we have far more CCTV cameras than you guys for a smaller population - I seem to remember the statistic is we have 1/4 of the worlds CCTV cameras. As far as I know the police can claim any footage they like.

     

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  8.  
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    btrussell (profile), Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 2:57am

    Re: get angry people

    Phht!
    Bill C-32

     

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  9.  
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    mike allen (profile), Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 3:37am

    The whole act is totally unworkable and should be repealed. It only is for large ISPs like BT small ISPs are exempt and now this we should get rid of the thing ASAP.

     

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  10.  
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    Not an electronic Rodent, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 4:16am

    Re:

    Actually that's am interesting point that I haven't seen discussed anywhere.

    By putting large burdens on ISPs with the DEA, like needing a (probably large considering how foamy-at-the-mouth some content providors can get) beaurocracy to handle the admin of takedowns and well as massive amounts of infrastructure to cope with the demanded retention of data etc, it puts up a huge barrier to entry for a startup ISP. It's also likely to put a load of the existing smaller ones out of business unless it gets modified.

    That would indeed result a small number of ISPs having de-facto control over all connectivity in the UK by reason of being the only ones able to afford to meet the regulations. It's bad enough already with many if not most ISPs relying on BT infrastructure for last-mile delivery in many places.

    Potential result? Well we've just seen how well such a situation worked out for Egypt. I'm sure we all assume "that would never happen in the UK", but.....

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 5:37am

    Re:

    Being DIY enthusiast if the government won't do it for you, do it yourself.

    There is nothing that stop us from making a website to monitor legislation, suggest legislation and vote for legislation.

    To monitor politicians and see on what they voted, with background history on them all.

     

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  12.  
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    abc gum, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 5:37am

    Re:

    Then again - one could investigate and provide actual data rather than speculation - just sayin

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 6:55am

    Governments are facing the dilemma of trying to balance the public's right to know and right to read what they want with the good old "greater good". They aren't going to just throw their hands up and say they can't do anything about it, they would be working themselves out of a job.

     

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  14.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 3:15pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "It may look that way from over there but I think you'll find we can do pointless and draconian police state laws at least as well as the US"

    To bad the hereditary peerage from the House of Lords was removed in 1997. I can't believe your country turned to such shit in such a sort time. Seems about the same time frames as the US did.

     

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  15.  
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    Not an electronic Rodent, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 4:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    To bad the hereditary peerage from the House of Lords was removed in 1997
    the police caution thing "Criminal Justice an Public Order (yeah right) act 1994" (sarcasm added) but yes it didn't really help much. A bunch of upper class twits who at least tended to be fairly educated and impartial in a class-biased sort of way to a bunch of bought and paid for cronies was not a fair swap IMO.
    The encryption thing was worse though. From an article at the time:
    "The burden of proof is on the suspect to prove that they don't have the key, and if they fail, they go to prison. But if they can give an explanation for not having the key, then the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that they are lying," Bowden said.
    Clearly the difficulty with proving a negative never occurred them in all the cries of "Think of the children!", which is of course how it was justified.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2011 @ 7:03pm

    Actually, people wanted to repeal the entire Digital Economy Act. So, while this is welcome, the government seems determined to go ahead with the rest of the DEA.

     

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


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