Letterworks Blog

Digital Economy Bill – no more iphone in the works loo!

Posted by: Letterworks on: 14th June 2010

June 12th saw the entry of the Digital Economy Bill to our statute books and despite huge protests from some journalists and public rights campaigners, it’s slipped into our lawbooks without much notice.

The bill was presented under the labour government in April and without any fanfare has got assent on June 12th. The Liberal Democrats had pre-election announced it illiberal and that if in power would repeal it. But it now seems that the coalition government have other things on their mind to worry about.

There are many things I don’t like about this bill. The fact that Letterworks internet service could be shut down if one of my customers uses our wi-fi to download from any copyright infringement sites, whilst on-site (or even outside in the carpark, if they remember the password). Do I really have to nanny their use or my employees for that matter? In this age of smartphones, any employee could take their phone into the bathroom and download something they shouldn’t courtesy of our wi-fi account. Where does the employer stand? Should employers ban the taking of iphones into lavatories? One thing is for sure, if we have no internet service, we have no business.

There are many serious implications of this law and this is just one small company’s take on it. If you want to read more about the impact on both commercial and private life, I strongly recommend you read the articles available, including Wikipedia.

From a humanitarian viewpoint, the blocking of public information sites like Wikileaks would be outrageous. Wikileaks was set up by a Swedish organisation with the aim of bringing the worlds attention to many dubious activities by public officials and governments. It offers journalists the opportunity to bring serious issues anonymously to the publics attention.This is often in the form of leaked documents that are in the public interest. If you haven’t visited this site, you will be amazed by some of its content, although as much of it is put up without the owners permission, doing so from June 12th could land you in big trouble!

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