Digital Economy Bill Passes

April 8, 2010 -

The UK’s Digital Economy Bill has been passed by the House of Commons, with MPs okaying the measure in a 189 to 47 vote.

The Bill, which also was granted Royal Assent, makes PEGI the UK’s sole rating system for videogames, introduces a variety of provisions for dealing with illegal file sharers, and debuts measures for blocking Internet access to online sites that may promote online copyright infringement.

The latter two procedures drew the ire of the Open Rights Group, whose Executive Director Jim Killock wrote, “What a debacle. Measures to allow disconnection of individuals from the internet, for undefined periods of time, web blocking laws; all with no real scrutiny and limited debate.”

Conservative MP Bill Cash, who spoke out against the bill, said, “Even in the 16th century, there was an attempt to track down people who set up secret presses; it made no difference.”

He added, “The number of people who have connected with their MP, with the public at large, on radio and on television, represent a significant core — perhaps even a significantly vast range — of people who simply are not prepared to accept the restrictions that the bill suggests should be imposed on them."

Game industry groups were, however, happy with Bill in relation to videogames. Laurie Hall, Director General of the Video Standards Council said, “This is an important moment for video games classification in the UK.  The Act creates a new, improved, single system for age-rating all games using the PEGI system.  It gives new powers to the VSC as the sole rating agency for games and this will strengthen child protection on the Internet."

ELSPA Director General Michael Rawlinson called the passing of the Bill a “huge victory for child safety, ELSPA and the games industry.”

The Guardian offers a handy quick guide to the digital Economy Bill here.

Comments

Re: Digital Economy Bill Passes

so, wait is the movie industry gonna dominate the video game market, now ?

Re: Digital Economy Bill Passes

Yay for freedom!!!

No? Oh... right... sorry. This one is the opposite of freedom. My bad.

Re: Digital Economy Bill Passes

All games will now be rated by the awful PEGI system. Great. Expect to see timid games get branded with an 18+. ("Did I see a same sex kiss? Oh, 18+ for you").

Re: Digital Economy Bill Passes

Is PEGI really that aweful? Because so far all I've ever encountered in differences is the fact they use 18+ instead of the M (17+) of ESRBorwhateveritwascalled.

Re: Digital Economy Bill Passes

I'm not comparing it to the ESRB (although they with PEGI are both really over the top when rating games with sexual content), but rather to the BBFC.

Mass Effect: BBFC - 12, PEGI - 18

Mass Effect 2: BBFC - 15, PEGI - 18

Heavy Rain: BBFC - 15, PEGI - 18

I feel that the BBFC ratings reflect the content of games much more accurately than PEGI's, and it can be misleading. If a parent was to play 18+ Mass Effect they would think that the content in Manhunt 2 would be similar, but they'd be completely wrong.

Re: Digital Economy Bill Passes

And I'm glad to be an American, where at least I know I'm free, or until Obama gets through with us.

---

I once had a dream about God. In it, he was looking down upon the planet and the havoc we recked and he said unto us, "Damn Kids get off my lawn!"

I once had a dream about God. In it, he was looking down upon the planet and the havoc we recked and he said unto us, "Damn Kids get off my lawn!"

Re: Digital Economy Bill Passes

And Bush was somehow better? Riiiiight.

I have equal disdain lately for both political parties. Not a single politician alive right now has any idea of how to behave responsibly.

 
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Andrew EisenAnd I still don't see how articles like Polygon's "An awful week to care about video games" can be construed as an attack.07/31/2015 - 4:25pm
Andrew Eisen18 total? I've seen several lists and the total has never been above 14. The most popular collection seems to be 9 on Aug. 28 then three more on Aug. 29, Sep. 2 and Sep. 3.07/31/2015 - 4:24pm
Infophile@Goth_Skunk: Your distaste for TMS is noted and given exactly the respect it deserves. The fact that you don't like a site doesn't mean they can't be right. In the linked article, they are.07/31/2015 - 4:06pm
Goth_SkunkAnd the worst volleys are the ones being fired by the kind of people who should be standing up and saying 'Hey! This isn't cool! Stop that!'07/31/2015 - 4:05pm
Goth_SkunkNow let's come full circle: One such confrontationally titled article is easy to dismiss. Within a day, nine similarly titled articles are written. Within 4 more days, nine more articles are written. This can't be ignored. This is a blatant attack.07/31/2015 - 4:04pm
Andrew EisenAnd that's totally fine. I too often skip articles and videos based solely on an unappealing title.07/31/2015 - 3:56pm
Goth_SkunkPersonally, I would not waste time reading an article with such a blatantly confrontational title.07/31/2015 - 3:52pm
Andrew EisenGoth - Depends on how the article was written and what it actually said.07/31/2015 - 3:49pm
Goth_SkunkThis is like going fishing and castign a HUGE net that captures tuna, dolphins, sharks, cod, and salmon when all you really want to capture are clownfish.07/31/2015 - 3:48pm
Andrew EisenPerm - If the specific make and model are made clear, I have no problem with the article saving space by refering to them as "these cars" or whatever.07/31/2015 - 3:47pm
Goth_Skunk... Hasbro's widening horizons..." would it not make sense that some would object there is no distinction being made between a reactionary brony and a stable-minded brony?07/31/2015 - 3:47pm
Big PermCars are being recalled because they explode. Editors Note at the end: Not all cars, only this specific make and model07/31/2015 - 3:46pm
Andrew EisenI still feel it was clear that they were admonishing a particular and very specific type of gamer. It's why I had no problem with any of the articles (especially since about half of them weren't really about "gamers" anyway).07/31/2015 - 3:45pm
Goth_Skunk@Andrew: If a columnist had written a "Bronies Are Dead" article, but in the article stated: "Note: I'm not talking about every guy who watches MLP or who self-identifies as a brony, just the type of reactionary holdouts that feel so threatened by..."07/31/2015 - 3:45pm
benohawkYou would if you didn't care.07/31/2015 - 3:43pm
Big PermIf you're referring to a certain subset of gamers, you wouldn't refer to that subset under the umbrella term of gamer. Or at least I wouldn't, because I think that's ridiculous.07/31/2015 - 3:42pm
benohawkI buy it, I think they honestly have no problem with most gamers. But it was more important to get links and page views, so gamers were a whipping boy for the media again.07/31/2015 - 3:41pm
Big PermI won't defend people going too far with harassment or email campaigns, but I also won't say they're in the wrong for feeling hostility towards their identity.07/31/2015 - 3:41pm
Andrew EisenI do. I felt the articles made it very clear who specifically the authors were referring to.07/31/2015 - 3:41pm
Big PermIt's an attack on an identity. I don't buy "but we're not talking about you, we swear" for a moment.07/31/2015 - 3:40pm
 

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