Big Brother web blocking must be stopped - Huppert

March 11, 2010 10:48 AM
Julian Huppert

Julian Huppert

A move to prevent a Big Brother-style web monitoring operation becoming law is being championed by Julian Huppert, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for Cambridge.

Julian is taking an emergency motion to the Lib Dem spring conference this weekend (March 12 - 14) in a bid to stop an amendment to the Digital Economy Bill which could see websites blocked for allegedly breaking copyright laws.

He is also urging people to join the fight through the group Lib Dems: Save the Net on the social networking site Facebook.

Julian believes the amendment which was passed last Wednesday in the House of Lords, would alter UK copyright law in a way which would allow courts to order the blocking of websites following legal action by rights-holders.

He claims the move could even be illegal under the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and other EU law.

If the amendment to the Bill is allowed to stand, Internet service providers also take down or block websites to avoid facing the costs of legal action, he claims.

The motion condemns the Digital Economy Bill "for focusing on illegal file sharing rather than on nurturing creativity and innovative business models".

"This amendment has widespread implications," said Julian, who will be summing up on the motion at conference. "It could deny freedom of expression, competition and innovation and could lead to civil liberties abuses.

"It is a direct threat to our freedom and could lead to the monitoring of our internet activity and the termination of our internet connections."

Julian will urge conference delegates to oppose regulatory attempts to monitor, control and limit internet access or internet publication.

"It is crucial that we stop these Big Brother tactics being used to restrict our internet activity," he added.

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