The Internet Times Supplement

The Great Firewall of Britain – why YOU should be concerned

In Politics on June 26, 2011 at 9:30 am

A leaked document exposes the secret (i.e. they do not want YOU the affected party to know until it is too late) talks underway to restrict access to information on the interwebtubenets and, without ANY justification required, block or take down a website or piece of information on the basis it MAY infringe copyright etc.

Regardless of where you live in the world, this is VERY alarming as it will affect you at some point. This is tantamount to censorship of the worst kind where an aggrieved party (without any due process or visibility) or a government can remove information made available on the net. Any criticism of a product, any use of materials under ‘Fair Use’ legislation (e.g. parody, or artistic interpretation), and so on could/would result in that information being blocked and/or removed, with the ‘offending’ party facing severe fines/punishment. All without ANY proper process to determine IF a piece of information actually is in breach of any law/s.

Want to see an amusing moment from a football match? You take a brief clip of something and post it on FB or on your blog? Have a collection of photos of ships/bottle tops/buildings? You post a picture you think is amusing on your Facebook page and suddenly find you cannot access your page and ALL content has been blocked/removed/deleted…etc? YOU could end up facing huge legal problems where, in order to establish exactly why you are infringing, you need to pay a huge some of money first only to find you have no recourse to any form of explanation as to exactly why this has happened.

Stalin and other repressive regimes would have been proud. YOU should be exceedingly alarmed wherever you live.

See here. Also here (JPG’s of the proposal). The key to this is how ‘infringement’ is actually interpreted. A copyright holder would simply have to say “We BELIEVE this to infringe our copyright” rather than actually prove that it does. That is it. The ‘substantially focused on infringement’ is a very loose term.

And an example of the sort of implications this could have for you… here.

Please take the time to look at this as it DOES affect you. If you wish, forward it to others.


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