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33 comments

Meh. (3, Interesting)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about 2 years ago | (#39817803)

I doubt it'll do much, if anything, to deter pirates. They are an adaptive lot, and see any efforts to stop them as just a challenge to be overcome.

Re:Meh. (2)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#39818233)

Well that's what makes the whole thing really funny. The measures are aimed entirely at file sharing. Since the bill was passed file sharing has declined and become harder to trace, whilst file lockers and usenet have grown in popularity.

So now this wont go live for another 2 years, I suspect the components of the bill will be so woefully irrelevant to the way piracy is working by this point that it will be meaningless anyway.

This is the great thing about this sort of thing I suppose - UK politicians are such slow, lumbering wastes of space, that the chance of them putting law into place that has any hope of keeping pace with technology is pretty much negligible.

Re:Meh. (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about 2 years ago | (#39818715)

It's worse than that (From the pro-act site). The act is written on the assumption that file sharing means a website that can be blocked. This is a true politicians law: To them, the internet *is* the web. All very well, in theory - trackers are of little use if you can't access the website with .torrent files, and using usenet without an indexer is an exercise in spam-induced pain. But, already, TPB has moved from .torrent files to magnet links, and other sites are expected to follow. Links are just text. Which can be emailed, IMed, posted on social networking sites. There is no containing links, word of electronic mouth will spread them far too quickly.

Re:Meh. (1)

AngryDeuce (2205124) | about 2 years ago | (#39820769)

Oh don't worry, once they make sharing any pirated material on the web punishable by death, it'll slow down dramatically.

I'm being facetious, of course, but I fully expect the penalties for piracy to become more and more draconian to the point of absurdity within the next decade. The financial penalties and even the inconveniences imposed by 3-strikes rules are never going to be effective because the odds of getting caught are so low, so as the MAFIAA fuckheads get more desperate, you're going to see more and more money getting thrown at governments all over the world to harshly criminalize the behavior. Once every other tool at their disposal has failed, they'll resort to that one, and many of our reps will gladly agree that yes, file sharing should be punishable by death, because piracy is treason and sedition.

Hopefully the beginning of the end (3, Insightful)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 2 years ago | (#39817819)

This is how we kill legislation. Delay it endlessly until a different government is elected and drops it.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (4, Insightful)

Captain Hook (923766) | about 2 years ago | (#39817943)

This is how we kill legislation. Delay it endlessly until a different government is elected and drops it.

The trouble is, this is the different government.

The DEA was voted in by the last Labour Government in out of hours voting which saw a grand total of 236 (189 for, 47 against) votes cast (out of 650ish MP who could have voted).

The Conservatives didn't bother voting one way or the other for the most part giving Labour a free run at introducing a law the Conservative wanted but knew wouldn't be popular.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (1)

Captain Hook (923766) | about 2 years ago | (#39817961)

When I said out of hours voting, I meant wash-up period [wikipedia.org] , I couldn't remember the proper term and meant to go back and edit it before hitting submit.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (2)

fremsley471 (792813) | about 2 years ago | (#39818011)

It's not too cynical to think the whole bill was timed to proceed through this wash-up period. They knew an election was coming; proper oversight from committees and the Lords would've rightly killed it. The media are all wetting themselves over the forthcoming election and critical oversight is not working.

This sort of poorly-though through stunt was also pulled by the Tories in 1997 when the railways were flogged off- that turned out well.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (1)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#39818271)

"This sort of poorly-though through stunt was also pulled by the Tories in 1997 when the railways were flogged off- that turned out well."

So well that the 21minute train section of my commute this morning took 2hrs.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (1)

fremsley471 (792813) | about 2 years ago | (#39818463)

Indeed. You knew that Blair's govt weren't going to do anything world-changing when they did nothing but watch it happen. They could have reversed the decision that was only a few weeks old. But no, we're still paying through the nose for a strategic service.

Surely some sort of renationalisation would be a vote winner? It could even save money for the govt!

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (1)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#39820303)

"It could even save money for the govt!"

It depends how you mean that, if by govt you mean the country then yes, but if by govt you mean the people in govt then no, it'll lose them money because it means no more backhanded bribes and cushy jobs post-political career from the likes of Serco.

Unfortunately for the rest of us the latter definition takes precedent.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (1)

Moryath (553296) | about 2 years ago | (#39819309)

Well the corrupt Republicans in the US House pulled the same thing last night.

CISPA passed at 6:31 pm in a surprise vote, right before the speaker pounded the gavel and shouted "adjourned." Why the rushed, secret-surprise vote instead of the normally scheduled vote next week?

- No news story already running (e.g. the evening drive-time news) would cover it. Not that the corrupt assholes on right wing racist "talk" radio would bother, even if CISPA is how freedom dies.
- No 10:00 news will devote more than 30 seconds to it, they don't have time to round up experts.
- Friday news is "trash day [youtube.com] ", nobody pays attention to the friday and saturday news, so they can hope any blowback just gets forgotten around Monday.
- Holding the vote as a surprise gets it through BEFORE the planned protests the day before the scheduled vote.

Corruption ain't unique to Britain, if anything in the USA it's far worse. You at least have proportional representation so that the shitwads from the "conservative party" can't seig-heil their way into total governmental control by "winning the government" with a 40% plurality that nets over 60% of the seats.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39820911)

We don't have proportional representation. We tried last year to get a slightly more proportional system, but the conservatives managed to convince the country that it was too complicated to use an AV system. See here

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom_Alternative_Vote_referendum,_2011

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about 2 years ago | (#39818573)

Labour, conservative, libdem, it makes no difference: All the major parties support stricter copyright control. Same situation in the US.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (4, Informative)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 2 years ago | (#39818683)

In wales, at least, Plaid has pretty sane policies towards IP. My Plaid MEP has spent much of her time campaigning for shorter copyright terms and against software patents.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (2)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 2 years ago | (#39818671)

Rather than the votes cast, take a look at how many people turned up for the debates [ggpht.com] . I count 19 in that picture, but there are probably a few out of camera shot. The other two hundred just turned up for the vote. In the original Slashdot article about the act, there was copy of that picture but with the caption changed to 'Democracy FAIL'. Somehow, very appropriate.

Re:Hopefully the beginning of the end (1)

UpnAtom (551727) | about 2 years ago | (#39825825)

Pretty sure there are no votes in the washup period.

Just a bit of horse-trading with the Tories.

You're probably talking about the earlier Second Reading though I didn't bother to check.

I *think* the LibDems are keen on scrapping bits of the DEA.

SOP (2)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | about 2 years ago | (#39817949)

Have you noticed how whenever governments announce something popular but expensive it is always timed to happen after the next election? And stupid legislation tends to get progressively delayed?

In this case (DEA) it looks as if an unholy combination of lobbying from "Lord" Mandelson's mates in the media, and the obsessive population-trackers in the Civil Service, was responsible. It was against the core Labour value that legislation should never enshrine privilege (i.e. private law), and it is equally against what used to be Liberal and Conservative support for laissez-faire.

Personally, if Ed Miliband was to get up and say the DEA was wrong in principle and Labour should never have introduced it, I might consider taking the pins out of my wax dummy of Keir Hardie even the one labelled "Iraq" (though "Yo Blair" stays in)

Let's evolve our opponent.... (1)

whydavid (2593831) | about 2 years ago | (#39817849)

Good luck with the wild goose chase. Hint: Hackers move a lot quicker than government schemes. This is a fundamental law of nature. Hackers will circumvent your next measure without waiting for a vote in parliament. Keep invading privacy to catch people downloading songs and you'll just advance the tech for those who would do more malicious things with their anonymity. Oh, and fundamental law #2: This is 2012. When some brilliant hacker does figure out a new scheme for getting around your snooping, someone will package it into binaries with adorable icons and it'll be on every college student's desktop (followed by their parents) in no time.

Re:Let's evolve our opponent.... (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 years ago | (#39818197)

This is a fundamental law of nature. Hackers will circumvent your next measure without waiting for a vote in parliament. Keep invading privacy to catch people downloading songs and you'll just advance the tech for those who would do more malicious things with their anonymity.

I hope you're prediction is right, because if you're worng it would imply the 1984 crowd's parinoid predictions are right. A true totalitarian regime such as N. Korea will stamp their will on THEIR people, it's practically the definition of 'totalitarian'. Western democracies get all hung up on things like hacking hacker's hands off.

Personally I think you're right. I don't think Mickey Mouse will be the first step in the long road from here to Orwell's nightmare, but stranger things have happened.

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It's incredibly easy to get around this (3, Informative)

TAZ6416 (584004) | about 2 years ago | (#39817959)

It only apples to ISP's with over 400000 customers of which there are 5 at the moment http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2010/jul/08/bt-talktalk-challenge-digital-economy-act [guardian.co.uk]

Just change to one of the many other ISP's out there http://www.ispreview.co.uk/list.shtml [ispreview.co.uk]

Re:It's incredibly easy to get around this (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39817987)

Fortunately the UK has a clear written constitution and the first clause states "bad laws can't be made worse", so we're safe.

Re:It's incredibly easy to get around this (1)

robably (1044462) | about 2 years ago | (#39818229)

It only apples to ISP's with over 400000 customers

And how long will that last?

Just change to one of the many other ISP's out there

Yes - just change to another, more expensive, ISP because a law is being introduced that makes your current ISP worse for no good technical reason.
When a bad law is introduced the correct response is to fight it, not to skirt around it. If you do that you are willingly giving up your rights. We are racing towards only having access to a subset of the internet in the UK and the lack of dissent is staggering.

Re:It's incredibly easy to get around this (1)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#39818309)

"Yes - just change to another, more expensive, ISP because a law is being introduced that makes your current ISP worse for no good technical reason."

Yeah, except those 5 ISPs in question are the ones whose networks are overburned, who have some of the most restrictive caps and throttling as a result, and who aren't cheaper anyway.

"When a bad law is introduced the correct response is to fight it, not to skirt around it. If you do that you are willingly giving up your rights. We are racing towards only having access to a subset of the internet in the UK and the lack of dissent is staggering."

Because those technically inept are the ones who don't care and even support the law, and those who aren't technically inept realise it's trivial to skirt round these laws anyway. As we have an unaccountable electoral system then how do you propose you fight this law other than bypassing it and hence highlighting it's inneffectiveness which is a form of fighting it anyway?

Politicians in the UK play their own game, they don't care what the electorate think, they haven't had to for a long long time, so the best solution is to just let them get on and play their game, whilst we continue to ignore them and play ours. Only when they finally realise people aren't playing their game will they recognise that if they want people to play their game, the rules have to change. It's silly to even vote in the current system, that merely gives them a false claim to legitimacy, better to bring down the voting turnout stats by not voting so that they can't even pretend they have any kind of legitimacy for their little game anymore.

Re:It's incredibly easy to get around this (1)

jimicus (737525) | about 2 years ago | (#39819387)

Quite a few of the smaller ISPs are buying capacity wholesale from larger ISPs anyway, particularly if you're looking at FTTC services. So "switching to someone whose network isn't overburdened" isn't as easy as swapping supplier, you've got to do quite a bit of research.

Too bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39818215)

I'm actually sorry this is happening. This will push the files haring debate away from people's minds a while longer.

I'd like very person in the country to have a fine awareness of the situation and have the ability to make an informed decision. Whatever that may be.

At the end of the day I believe this will just press people to be more aware and computer users will eventually use, obfuscation, encryption and proxies by default.

Let's not forget the mass ISP migration to any that will give the customer what the customer wants.

Tunnel all your traffic via encrypted link to a server in a country with nicer laws? I think so!

I'll be alright... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39820235)

I'll be alright - by the time 2014 comes around I'll have downloaded the entire internet *twice over*.

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