06 December 2007

Reneging on Gowers

When the Gowers review of copyright in the UK came out I was ambivalent: there was some good things, but also areas that were potentially problematic, notably in terms of one-side strengthening copyright enforcement. One year on, it looks like my fears were justified:

If enforcement and flexibility are two sides of the same coin, then one year on it looks like the toss has definitely gone to enforcement. This means that Government is in effect making the situation worse: concentrating on strengthening enforcement measures while failing to address the inherent inflexibility of copyright law that Gowers identified as a key factor in the general public’s disrespect for the law.

Given what is happening in France, with its idiotic "three strikes and you're out" approach - this isn't a game, you know - and the fact that the UK industry is beginning to salivate at the prospect of bringing in something similar here, this is not good.

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