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Early Day Motion to Scrap UK Digital Economy Act Receives Tepid Support

Posted: 29th Jun, 2010 By: MarkJ
uk parliament logoThe Liberal Democrat MP for Cambridge, Julian Huppert, has tabled an Early Day Motion (EDM) seeking a repeal of sections 9 - 18 of the Digital Economy Act 2010. This covers the main thrust of the acts focus towards tackling online infringement of copyright (illegal p2p file sharing) by broadband ISP customers, specifically technical measures such as customer disconnection, website blocking and speed restrictions.
Online infringement of copyright

3. Obligation to notify subscribers of reported infringements .
4. Obligation to provide infringement lists to copyright owners .
5. Approval of code about the initial obligations .
6. Initial obligations code by OFCOM in the absence of an approved code .
7. Contents of initial obligations code .
8. Progress reports .
9. Obligations to limit internet access: assessment and preparation .
10. Obligations to limit internet access .
11. Code by OFCOM about obligations to limit internet access .
12. Contents of code about obligations to limit internet access .
13. Subscriber appeals .
14. Enforcement of obligations .
15. Sharing of costs .
16. Interpretation and consequential provision .
17. Power to make provision about injunctions preventing access to locations on the internet .
18. Consultation and Parliamentary scrutiny
Early Day Motions (EDMs) are formal motions submitted for debate in the UK governments House of Commons. However, very few EDMs are actually debated. Instead, they are often used for publicising the views of individual MPs, drawing attention to specific events or campaigns, and demonstrating the extent of parliamentary support for a particular cause or point of view.
EFFECTS OF DIGITAL ECONOMY ACT 2010 ON USE OF THE INTERNET

Huppert, Julian

That this House believes that sections nine to 18 of the Digital Economy Act 2010 should not have been rushed through in the dying days of the last Parliament; further believes that these sections have large repercussions for consumers, civil liberties, freedom of information and access to the internet; and calls on the Government to introduce early legislation to repeal those provisions.

http://edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=40931
At the time of writing Huppert's EDM, which was admittedly posted right before the weekend, has attracted just 34 signatures. In an average session only six or seven EDMs reach over two hundred signatures.

However an EDM is not likely to be debated even if it gains a large number of signatures. It should be noted that Huppert also leaves the notification (warning letter) system intact, which is fair enough since that was the agreed original proposal before Peter Mandelson's questionable intervention.
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