UK Politicians Look To Make Digital Economy Bill Even Worse: Insert Web Censorship Filter Proposal

from the [redacted]-[redacted]-[redacted]- dept

We’ve written a few times about politicians trying to fix Peter Mandelson’s Digital Economy Bill, but now it appears some politicians are trying to make it worse. One of the proposed amendments would let the government designate websites to be blocked at the ISP level. This is blatant censorship, of the kind that Australia is now trying to implement, and which China already uses. Basically, if a court determines that, via any website, a “substantial” amount of infringing content can be accessed, the court could order ISPs to block that site. The idea here, obviously, is to get ISPs to block sites like The Pirate Bay and to stifle new technologies. If this had been a couple decades ago, they would be passing laws to ban the VCR.

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Comments on “UK Politicians Look To Make Digital Economy Bill Even Worse: Insert Web Censorship Filter Proposal”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: a sure way to lose

facilitate unlawful gain

That’s a funny way to say copyright infringement. How is infringing on copyright a sure way to lose freedom and the privilege of anonymity?

Our hard won freedom at that?

Copyright infringement can take away my freedom? Freedom to think? Freedom to speak? Freedom to breath?

Hephaestus (profile) says:

Ooops ... the only thing that comes to mind here is...

Remember, remember the Fifth of November,
The Gunpowder Treason and Plot,
I see no reason
Why the Gunpowder Treason
Should ever be forgot.
Guy Fawkes, Guy Fawkes, t’was his intent
To blow up the King and Parli’ment.
Three-score barrels of powder below
To prove old England’s overthrow;

mike allen (profile) says:


there is a bit of “somebody think of the children”what the government and others have not figured out yet is that to ban something is the quickest way to gain traffic or sales. That has happened with music many time where a song has been banned by say BBC radio quickest route to a number one.
In the case of web sites any 8 year old will work round the ISP block in minutes. where if left alone would not bother.

Niall (profile) says:


Hmm, weak argument. Lots of people ‘need’ drug recipes. Drug users, law enforcement, researchers… so why would terrorists specifically need them?

Lots of people like access to ‘illegal’ movies. (What’s an ‘illegal’ movie? Something like A Clockwork Orange used to be in the UK? Something that’s banned in some country somewhere. Maybe you mean an ‘illegally downloaded movie’…) Why does a terrorist specifically ‘need’ access to ‘illegal’ movies? Or are we talking A-Q recruitment vids here?

As for bomb instructions… maybe a terrorist might ‘need’ this, but last I heard, people were learning to make bombs long before the internet. What did the Oklahoma bomber use, a time machine to access the web? Maybe the Unabomber peered into a crystal ball to read ? [made-up URL for those with no sense of humour] Did the IRA read tea leaves?

“If you’ve got nothing to hide then you’ve got nothing to worry about” is the stupidest answer ever. It’s not even about ‘hiding’ stuff, it’s about people blocking stuff that is perfectly legitimate just because they have a particular prejudice. Anyone remember the republican senator whose own name ‘Dick’ was caught in his promoted spam filter – the one that blocked out sites containing words like Scuntthorpe…

Ask anyone who lived in Eastern Europe a mere 20-odd years ago if they had “nothing” to worry about. Or people now being recorded on secret, over-broad databases and then harried because of that. Because of course, no politician or policeman or spook is EVER evil, corrupt or stupid. And there really WERE weapons of mass destruction… 😉

Johnny Canada says:

Not only in the UK

It happens in the U.S. of A.

Try to go to any Russian Music site like All of MP3.

The are still there but they are blocked by the U.S. and you do not even have the law yet.

The big problem of one country blocking sites is that they get blocked in other countries as well.

As a Canadian I can not access some Music sites as the U.S. has blocked them. If the internet routes through the U.S. it get blocked in Canada, even though Canada has not blocked the site.

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