Judge starts UK Internet censorship

A High Court judge has started censoring the Internet in the UK by ruling that the file sharing site The Pirate Bay must be blocked by internet service providers.Sky, Everything Everywhere, TalkTalk, O2 and Virgin Media must all prevent their users from accessing the site.

A sixth ISP, BT, requested “a few more weeks” to consider their position on blocking the site.

In November 2011, the BPI asked the group of ISPs to voluntarily block access to the site. The request followed a court order to block Newzbin 2, a site also offering links to download pirated material.

The ISPs said they would not block webssites unless a specific court order was made, as is now the case.

We agree with Jim Killock, executive director of the Open Rights Group who called the move “pointless and dangerous”.

“It will fuel calls for further, wider and even more drastic calls for internet censorship of many kinds, from pornography to extremism,” he said.  “Internet censorship is growing in scope and becoming easier. Yet it never has the effect desired. It simply turns criminals into heroes.”

When will the politicians learn that although this censorship is a slow and expensive process, it will be seen as another example where the establishment is curtailling free speech.