Saturday, March 13, 2010

BPI decide to take on MI5 to push Digital Economy Bill

Having discovered during the week that, effectively, some Liberal Democrat peer had cut and pasted the BPI's wording for an amendment to the Digital Economy Bill, the leaked BPI memo that Boing Boing has this morning isn't surprising. Depressing, as it shows once more how dirty private companies are prepared to play to get their way, but not surprising:

In the memo, [Director of Public Affairs Richard] Mollet identifies Britain's top spies as being a stumbling block to the bill's passage -- worried, apparently, that creating a Great Firewall of Britain will make it harder for spies to spy on naughty sites (someone should tell MI5 about Ipredator, the excellent proxy service from the Pirate Bay; after all, that's the same proxy that everyone else in Britain is likely to use to get at the blocked sites if the BPI gets its way).

Mollet also implies that Britain's spy agencies might have paid for a Talk Talk survey in which 71% of 18-34 year olds said that they would simply evade the DEB and go on infringing.

Mollet claims that Britain's ISPs have already caved into their duties to spy on and censor network connections, claiming that there is a sense of "settled will" in the "ISP community."

Despite the "B" in BPI, three of the four main companies it represents aren't British. Why are we so comfortable with foreign, private corporations trying to make law in the UK?