City Of London Police Inserting 'This Website Has Been Reported To Police' Banner Ads On Websites With No Legal Review
from the that-seems...-dangerous dept
In fact, some of us are so conditioned to ad blindness that it actually took a bit of an effort to get me consciously focus on the City of London Police banner ads in that picture -- and I didn't even notice the top banner until I was proofreading this post. Can't imagine that's particularly productive.
But the bigger problem is the one we brought up when it first came out that they were putting together this list in the first place. A totally non-transparent, one-sided system by which these technologically clueless police designate a site to be a "pirate" site seems ripe for abuse and harming perfectly legitimate sites. Remember, of course, the last time the legacy entertainment and online ad industry teamed up on such a list? It included tons of legitimate sites, including the Internet Archive, Soundcloud, Vimeo and BitTorrent's corporate website. It also included a bunch of popular hip hop blogs and 50 Cent's personal website.
One hopes that this new list will be put together with a bit more care, but you never really know. The industry has a way of declaring certain sites "rogue" despite them being perfectly fine. Remember, this is the same industry that tried to outlaw the VCR, the DVR and the MP3 player. It's also the same industry that insisted that both Youtube and Veoh were "pirate" sites, though both sites won in court (not before Veoh went out of business though).
So what happens when the City of London Police put these banner ads on the next YouTube? Does that site have any recourse from this opaque and totally one-sided process? Do they get to sue the police for defamation? And, really, in what world do the City of London Police think they have any jurisdiction outside of a single square mile of land?