For the backstory to the upload filter check my book The Closing of the Net - PAPERBACK OR KINDLE - £15.99!

Digital Britain

Britain has traditionally been  influential in European policy for telecoms and online content. It is not as loud as France, but in a quieter way, lets its views be known. British  policy was the point from which the EU has taken  its lead, notably in trying to establish a competitive telecoms market, where  the British influence on telecoms policy has been markedly  evident. Britain's competitive telecoms policy was established in the 1980s and 1990s, and has subsequently been implemented by successive governments. Britain now arguably has the most competitive telecoms market globally. It risks losing this influence if we leave the EU.

The current Conservative government has set a policy goal for universal broadband access. However, the structures that govern the industry are problemative for achieving this goal. This makes for some interesting policy analysis.

The government also supports a policy of content filtering, which is problematic.  Content filtering  is contradictory to the government's  aim of leading the world in digital and creating a new industrial strategy.

This section primarily  discusses a previous  policy attempt to amend telecoms law for copyright enforcement in Britain. This was  the Digital Economy Act which was forced through in the dying hours of the last Parliament in May 2010.   These measures  involved the use of network technology against the users, with  implications for the neutrality of the network, and the neutral ‘mere conduit’ status of the network provider. In 2016,  this law has not been implemented, and  from what can be ascertained it is deemed to be unworkable.

If you like the articles in this section, you may like my book The Closing of the Net.

If you are interested in the Digital Economy Act and copyright enforcement policy, you may like my previous books A Copyright Masquerade: How Corporate Lobbying Threatens Online Freedoms and The Copyright Enforcement Enigma - Internet Politics and the ‘Telecoms Package’

 Is the Online Infringement of Copyright (Initial Obligations) (Sharing of Costs) Order 2011 being rushed into Parliament just so that Ofcom can claim back expenses related to  the UK's  graduated response scheme?  


***Update 19 January. The draft SI on cost sharing and the "online infringement of copyright"  is due to be published by the UK Parliament today - I will update with a link when I have it ***


Today the UK Parliament took delivery of a  draft law - known as a Statutory Instrument - setting out the cost sharing arrangements for  the first stage of the  graduated response /3-strikes measures in the Digital Economy Act. 'Cost sharing' means how the costs will be split between ISPs and rights-holders, and the SI is highly controversial.


The Statutory Instrument - or SI for short -  has been  ‘laid before Parliament' which I have discovered means that it was deposited at the Secretary's office.  This means that it must now go through a process where

Read more: DE Act: Will Parliament approve or reject copyright expenses?

In the wake of yesterday's Wikileaks drama, a call by the  British  Phonographic Industry (BPI) for Internet blocking to support music copyright,  has gone almost unnoticed.  But  the BPI's call  is a siren warning that the freedom of the Internet is intensely under threat.


Yesterday, in interviews carried out alongside one of its standard press announcements about online piracy and digital music sales,   BPI head, Geoff  Taylor,  called for  Internet blocking to support music copyright. His demands were put in an interview broadcast on the BBC News 24  and in another interview given  to a reporter from the Daily Telegraph. (‘Blocking' is the word which he appears to have used.)  Mr Taylor wants

Read more: BPI (British IFPI) call to block the 'Net

Ministerial talks with rights-holders and ISPs. Ed Vaizey hints at web blocking in Parliamentary debate. Is the Minister just an industry pawn?

 UK Communications and Culture Minister Ed Vaizey has come in for quite a bit of criticism for suggesting a two-tier Internet. A closer examination of his Parliamentary speeches reveals that he is organising secret talks between the entertainment and Internet industries.

 It is not exactly clear what the talks were about, but it seems that the agenda may have slipped from

Read more: DE Act: Minister hosts industry talks on web blocking



States v the 'Net? 

Read The Closing of the Net, by me, Monica Horten.

"original and valuable"  Times higher Education

" essential read for anyone interested in understanding the forces at play behind the web."

Find out more about the book here  The Closing of the Net


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Copyright Enforcement Enigma launch, March 2012

In 2012, I presented my PhD research in the European Parliament.

Don't miss Iptegrity!  RSS/ Bookmark is the website of Dr Monica Horten. She is  a trainer & consultant on Internet governance policy, published author& Visiting Fellow at the London School of Economics & Political Science. She served as an independent expert on the Council of Europe Committee on  Internet freedom. She has worked on CoE, EU and UNDP funded projects in eastern Europe and beyond.  She was shortlisted for The Guardian Open Internet Poll 2012. Iptegrity  offers expert insights into Internet policy (and now Brexit). Iptegrity has a core readership in the Brussels policy community, and has been cited in the media. Please acknowledge Iptegrity when you cite or link.  For more, see IP politics with integrity is made available free of charge for  non-commercial use, Please link-back & attribute Monica Horten. Thank you for respecting this.

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The politics of copyright

A Copyright Masquerade - How corporate lobbying threatens online freedoms

'timely and provocative' Entertainment Law Review