Published Apr 08, 2010The British government has just approved a groundbreaking new bill that seeks to rid the Internet of piracy in all its forms. Called the Digital Economy Bill, the new ruling was passed by the House of Lords and House of Commons on Wednesday (April 7) and targets both file sharers and sites that host unauthorized content.
Essentially, the Digital Economy Bill is seeking to end piracy by sending warning letters to file-sharers. If they do not stop hosting illegal content at that point, they will have their bandwidth decreased or Internet account cancelled. Similarly, websites hosting illegal content will be blocked.
Like similar rulings in the past, this bill is being praised by some, and harshly criticized by naysayers who see it as draconian. UK Music executive and former Undertones front-man Feargel Sharkey says the ruling creates a need for innovative, legal downloading services.
"Over the next couple of days I would like to genuinely reach out to the ISPs and technology companies - we need to sit down as quickly as possible and start developing these new services," he told BBC 6 Music. "Personally, I'm very happy to give people whatever music they want on whatever platform they want it... It's going to take all of us - the music industry, the games industry, the film industry, the ISPs, the technology companies. It's a challenge and I'm throwing down a gauntlet to all of us and I hope that really quickly we can now get down to business."
The effectiveness of the Digital Economy Bill is yet to be seen, but don't be surprised if similar laws make their way to North America and shut down your endless torrenting sessions.