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ISPA UK Reveals Internet Hero and Villain Finalists for 2012 Awards

Tuesday, Jun 19th, 2012 (7:03 am) - Score 579

The UK Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA) has revealed the finalists for its 2012 Internet Hero and Internet Villain gongs at their forthcoming 14th annual awards. The two categories seek to identify individuals or organisations that have either done the most or least to help the wider ISP industry.

Last year’s (2011) Internet Hero was Prof. Ian Hargreaves for his review on making copyright laws fitter for a digital age, while the Villain went to the law firm ACS:Law for their flawed harassment of broadband consumers over suspected internet piracy claims. By contrast this year’s choices are dominated by issues of industry regulation or those whom have threatened fundamental access rights.

Nicholas Lansman, ISPA Secretary General, said:

We have had a record number of nominations this year from the public so I would like to thank everyone that emailed and tweeted their ideas. Unfortunately, not all could be included and the ISPA Council has had a difficult task whittling them down to a handful of finalists.

The Hero nominations are always a pleasure to announce and this year’s strong contenders have been chosen for promoting, developing or defending the interests of the Internet industry. The Villain is a light hearted look at those that have upset the industry or hampered its development and we look forward to announcing the winners on the 3rd July.”

ISPA Internet Hero Finalists 2012

* Broadband for the Rural North (B4RN) – for bringing high speed internet into remote rural communities, setting an example for others to follow.

* Ofcom – for its independent assessment of the website blocking measures in the DEA, which they found to be neither “practical” nor “desirable” and “trivial” to circumvent.

* Reg Bailey – for his government review into childhood sexualisation which found that giving parents and carers an active choice over what content is suitable for children and young people is preferable to default content filtering.

* Foreign Secretary Rt Hon William Hague MP – for recognising, at the London Cyber Conference, that the future internet must be without ‘government control or censorship’ where ‘innovation and competition flourish’ and ‘investment and enterprise are rewarded’.

* Court of Justice of the European Union – for its verdict on the Scarlet-Sabam case, which found that an injunction requiring a “complicated” and “costly” filter for copyright infringing material would not strike a fair balance between “the right to protect intellectual property and the right to conduct business”.

ISPA Internet Villain Finalists 2012

* The International Telecommunications Union – for its internet governance land-grab which could lead to a less open and free internet, controlled by governments in a top-down manner.

* Karel De Gucht and Directorate-General Trade – for pushing IPR enforcement standards through ACTA and disregarding the concerns from EU citizens and European Parliament in relation to the threats against fundamental rights.

* U.S. Representative Lamar S. Smith – for introducing SOPA: an ill-thought out, draconian piece of legislation that would have stifled innovation and free speech online.

* Goldeneye International – for following in the dubious footsteps of previous speculative invoicing, by demanding £700 in damages from account holders who had allegedly downloaded copyright infringing material, relying solely on IP matching and claiming that bill payers were liable for any infringement.

All of the winners will be unveiled on the 3rd July 2012 at the Park Lane Sheraton Hotel in London.

For more information go to:

By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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