Mandelson wants to impose law by decree on filesharing

Not satisfied with the powers he’ll get against filesharers in the new Digital Economy Bill — a £50,000 fine and banning from the internet — Lord Mandelson has decided that to stop illegal copying, he needs the power to make new laws by decree (i.e. statutory instrument):

Lord Mandelson is seeking to amend the laws on copyright to give the government sweeping new powers against people accused of illegal downloading.

In a letter to Harriet Harman, the leader of the house and head of the committee responsible for determining changes to such legislation, Mandelson says he is “writing to seek your urgent agreement” to changes to the 1988 Copyright, Designs and Patents Act “for the purposes of facilitating prevention or reduction of online copyright infringement”.

By writing to Harman, the business secretary is seeking to get the change made through a “statutory instrument” – in effect, an update to the existing bill that the government can push through using its parliamentary majority.

That can be done with the minimum of parliamentary time, which is already at a premium.

The letter, which is circulating inside the government, comes as ministers prepare to publish the digital economy bill at 7.30am tomorrow. That is expected to set out a “three strikes” policy under which people who are found to be illicitly downloading copyrighted material have their internet connections withdrawn after three warnings.

Lord Mandelson therefore wants to impose more impositions, over and above the already very draconian powers given to him in the Digital Economy Bill. What particular powers does he want? Cory Doctorow explains:

1. The Secretary of State would get the power to create new remedies for online infringements (for example, he could create jail terms for file-sharing, or create a “three-strikes” plan that costs entire families their internet access if any member stands accused of infringement)

2. The Secretary of State would get the power to create procedures to “confer rights” for the purposes of protecting rightsholders from online infringement. (for example, record labels and movie studios can be given investigative and enforcement powers that allow them to compel ISPs, libraries, companies and schools to turn over personal information about Internet users, and to order those companies to disconnect users, remove websites, block URLs, etc)

3. The Secretary of State would get the power to “impose such duties, powers or functions on any person as may be specified in connection with facilitating online infringement” (for example, ISPs could be forced to spy on their users, or to have copyright lawyers examine every piece of user-generated content before it goes live; also, copyright “militias” can be formed with the power to police copyright on the web)

Mandelson is also gunning for sites like YouSendIt and other services that allow you to easily transfer large files back and forth privately (I use YouSendIt to send podcasts back and forth to my sound-editor during production).

Charlotte Gore is worried this will destroy progress on the internet in Britain:

It’s terrifying stuff that, if he’s successful, will cripple Britain’s technological progress. I use a programme called, “Drop Box” and it allows me to transfer files from my MacBook to my PC using the Internet. I don’t want such files to be publicly available because they’re my own personal private files. But Mandelson wants these services to disable privacy modes so that Movie Studios can check I’m not stealing from them.

It’s all in the name of Copyright theft – otherwise known as ‘Mandelson’s extremely rich friends’. It’s crony capitalism, favouritism and economic and social planning all rolled into one horrible, toxic bomb.

Whether or not Mandelson could actually succeed in wiping out Copyright theft on the internet is academic (he can’t, as it happens, no matter what he tries). What he can do is condemn Britain to a sort of internet dark age where technology is held back if it’s a threat to the vested interests Mandelson represents.

Pirate Party Leader Andrew Robinson suggests that:

If you want to protect your freedom of speech, your privacy, your right to be considered innocent until proved guilty, then now is the time to join the Pirate Party. We need your support to field candidates that will stand up against this insanity. We must show Labour at the ballot box that we will not accept this!

Labour MP Tom Watson is also against this illiberal and dangerous proposal.

So, what can you do against this? The simplest thing is to join the facebook group against this proposal.

While you’re at it:


This entry was posted in Britain, copyright, digital rights, Pirate Party, war on civil liberties and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Mandelson wants to impose law by decree on filesharing

  1. Pingback: Piratnytt » Blog Archive » Mandelson wants to impose law by decree on filesharing « Amused …

  2. lets give you an overview of this so called DPI kit being installed into our UK core network infrastructure right now… so you can begin to understand the full implications.

    in effect you, your family, indeed all your interactions/ data streams are invisibly seen, intercepted, processed and stored by this invisible hardware (commonly referred to as ‘man in the middle’ kit, and those unknown persons that have access to it, seems ripe for Encouraging some backhander wedges to to passed on the QT.

    ALL Deep Packet Interception/Inspection hardware Must by it very design and
    as its very first act, ‘Intercept’ all of a given broadband data flow Before any other later action it might take.

    second, it must ’store’ this data weather temporarily in ram, or permanently on some other storage, to then perform some work on this given data.

    thirdly, it must perform the act of ‘processing’ (or as the DPI vendors PR like to rename it, Inspecting/inspected/inspection, as its better PR OC) to produce the intended outcome of a ‘derivative work’ from the input of this core unique personal dataflow.

    to justify its installation into any core network to provide useful work, it Must perform at least these 3 key stages, and perhaps an optional 4th stage of permanent storage of the outcome data to be used elsewere.
    you understand this and agree?, yes.

    from a logical POV, that is also the case.
    you understand this and agree, yes?

    now from both a UK, And especially current EU directives legal POV as stated many time before elsewhere on-line if your do your due diligence,

    Under EU and UK law it doesn’t matter what they do (the UK ISP’s in this case, as your entry as trusted payed for/contracted provider into the WWW,) with the data after they have intercepted and inspected it etc

    the very first act of ‘intercepting’ it in the first place without a warrant or prior informed consent from all parties has just broken the existing UK statute under criminal RIPA law.

    Really THINK About That….

    the Executives that signed off on this DPI use, and the Employees that operate this kit in these conditions are being asked to willfully break the law, and perform a criminal act under RIPA and several other statutes and risk a criminal conviction and real potential jail time
    should they be found guilty.

    as per the existing criminal executive Stanford RIPA case law.

    hopefully you find this informative and use it to educate and inform others before its to late through inaction..

    remember no matter what your position, no matter if your an MP, doctor,writer, housewife or silver surfer that “If you or your family are VM customers, then your communications will also be intercepted and suspect of infringing copyright alongside these others in this witch-hunt ”

    does Privateer mandelson consider your family as just one more of several enemy powers he can run over without consideration with his electronic Declaration of war paper…

    with his made up Letters of Marque,the Declarations and the Bail bonds after talking with the Russian Oleg and their Telecom’s connections etc..

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    as a bit of fun, with a serious side and message, watch this and enjoy.

    Dan Bull – Dear Mandy [an open letter to Lord Mandelson]

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

  3. here’s an interesting thought for you and PPUK CO BadPirate
    IMP and distributed private storage to boot by the back door,
    and No pesky Data Protection Requests to the Govt to fill …,2221.msg24411.html#msg24411

    Re: BT and Detica?
    « Reply #30 on: November 15, 2009, 09:53:11 AM » Quote

    Quote from: cassius on November 14, 2009, 11:54:55 PM
    To avoid squandering our efforts – and to avoid reinventing the wheel, it is REALLY worthwhile to read this paper from The LSE :

    It looks very much as if IMP is the initiative behind Mr. Klein’s over-excited comments. ( I guess he has done us a favour through his over the top enthusiasm for mass surveillance, in the same way as the hapless Kent Ertugrul alerted everyone to Phorm’s intentions through his loose-cannon PR abilities).

    Very interesting. I need to sit down and read this document properly but looks fascinating on initial glance.

    IMP Proposal Briefing document available from LSE.
    Mandelson goes to Corfu to speak with Media Entertainment Industry people on Rothschild Yacht. (Re: P2P)
    IMP Project for total surveillance reported in news last week as ready, then it’s reported as cancelled.
    IMP Project is handled by BAE subcontractors with a history of snooping *cough* actionable intelligence gathering and processing.
    BT upto their old DPI testing tricks and sneaky illegal interceptions.
    IMP Proposal sidelined as a crime and terrorism tool and reactivated as a Media Industry P2P big stick?!?

    Obviously more research and dates needed for this story, have I missed any important points before I start digging through the IMP Briefing document?

    NB: 3rd note. Why was there confusion in the press? Are we starting to see a clearer picture emerge here? Was the IMP for crime and terrorism cancelled but the Media and Entertainment version given the green light? Is that why the British investigative press seem so confused, they misunderstood the press briefing handouts and Chinese whispers rather than doing some proper journalism… (what’s Katie Price upto these days? Go press go! you news hounds you!)

    BadPirate (back to the USSR (Ex!))

    « Last Edit: November 15, 2009, 10:11:29 AM by BadPirate »

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