Brighton, England town council says that councillor is violating copyright law by youtubing the council meetings

Jason Kitcat, a town councillor in Brighton, England, faces suspension from the council for posting clips of town meetings to YouTube. The council says that his attempt to "hold the administration politically to account" by trying "to highlight what the he believed were the administration's deficiencies" constitutes a political use of the council's "intellectual property." This is prohibited.

These rules are designed to stop unfair use of telephones and offices to campaign for re-election, for instance. The rules are not meant to be applied to matters of free speech, with no impact on council finances, using tools that are freely available to everyone.

Jason has, in copyright law, a fair dealing right to use clips to report news. "Fair dealing" is meant to stop copyright interfering with free speech, by placing a limit on "intellectual property". Whether Jason's use of the material is 'fair dealing' can only be decided in a Court, ultimately. Meanwhile, of course, just about everyone including Parliament is trying to make sure people can make public use of their recordings of official proceedings.

Brighton tries to use copyright to censor Councillor