We're in the final days for the British Digital Economy Bill. This Thursday, the House of Commons will decide whether to subject the bill to line-by-line debate (which will probably kill it or at least delay it until after the election), or whether to pass it without any real scrutiny or debate. Given that the DEB will touch every part of British life, from education to civic engagement to health to law enforcement to justice, it's insane to think that Parliament might pass it without even examining what it says.
This may be our last chance to demand a full debate on the bill. 38 Degrees and the Open Rights Group are asking you to write to Harriet Harman, Leader of the House, to ask her to support a full debate on the bill. It will take you two minutes, and it may be your last chance to ask Parliament to consider the public interest (rather than just the record companies' demands) before passing one of the most important laws of the young century.
Harriet Harman MP, Leader of the House of Commons, will – on Thursday afternoon – have to explain the Government's plans for the Digital Economy Bill.
The Bill has suffered from huge manipulation by lobbyists, including insertion of entire new clauses at the behest of music lobbyists the BPI, and accusations that Lords amended the Bill without declaring their interests.
The Bill still includes highly controversial measures to disconnect families from the internet after allegations of copyright infringement. There are as yet unknown measures to block websites, with the potential for censorship. Such measures should not be rushed through during 'wash up'.
Harriet Harman, as Leader of the Commons has the power to recommend the Parliamentary timetable. That's why we are asking for her to guarantee that the Bill receive full, line by line scrutiny. Nothing less will do,