Digital Economy Bill [ Lords]

Part of Business of the House – in the House of Commons at 4:44 pm on 6th April 2010.

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Photo of Jeremy Hunt Jeremy Hunt Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport 4:44 pm, 6th April 2010

My hon. Friend is absolutely right, and that is why we cannot support clause 43. We would like to support the objectives of that clause on orphan works, but unintended consequences occur unless the wording is right, as Kate Hoey pointed out. The question is: why has a debate on such a crucial Bill been left to the very last minute? The Government could have brought this Bill before Parliament ages ago, because these issues have been in the public domain for years. Dr. Tanya Byron, whom the Secretary of State mentioned, told the Government two years ago that a new age-rating system for video games was needed. The Gowers review of intellectual property is so old it is practically out of copyright. Ofcom wanted the Government to establish a new model for public service broadcasting regulation six years ago, but as the Government have progressively run out of steam, we have had a lighter and lighter parliamentary timetable, and instead of getting on with it, we have had endless dithering and prevarication.

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Owen Blacker
Posted on 7 Apr 2010 5:06 pm (Report this annotation)

The Gowers Review can be found at http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/gowers_review_index.htm and was published on 6 December 2006.