UK Gov't Now Supporting 3 Strikes: Lobbyists Win Again
from the the-will-of-the-people? dept
Looks like the same thing is happening again. Earlier this year, the UK gov't "Digital Britain" report clearly said that a three strikes regime, whereby ISPs would be responsible for kicking file sharers offline, didn't make sense. While there were other problems with the report, at least it knew better than to drag ISPs into things as copyright cops.
But... then the lobbyists took over. Entertainment industry lobbyists have been working overtime in the UK (the stories we've been hearing are pretty nuts...), and a few weeks ago the British press was noting that UK Business Secretary Peter Mandelson had vacationed with David Geffen (who has ties to both the recording and the movie industries) and suddenly showed an immense interest that hadn't been there before, on changing Digital Britain to make the rules tougher.
So, surprise, surprise... suddenly ISPs are finding out that three strikes is back on the table even after being promised it wouldn't be. The original report had given regulators until 2012 to consider what technical measures ISPs should take -- if any. But Mandelson's department has suddenly declared that timeframe is "too long." The minister for Digital Britain, Stephen Timms, practically comes out and admits that they were lobbied hard:
"We've been listening carefully to responses to the consultation this far, and it's become clear there are widespread concerns that the plans as they stand could delay action, impacting unfairly upon rights holders."So, expect three strikes to show up in the UK. Of course, it will be a dreadful mistake. I still can't understand why the recording industry thinks this is a good idea. You may kick people off the internet, but does anyone honestly think that will actually get people to buy again? It seems like a strategy designed to piss more people off. And when has that ever been good for business?