The bill was opposed by the Liberal Democrats and some Labour MPs, but it has essentially been forced through by Labour and the Conservatives in around two hours of the final reading. Although Clause 18 – which gave the government extensive powers to block sites across the net – has been removed, it has been replaced with powers for the secretary of state for business to block “a location on the internet which the court is satisfied has been, is being or is likely to be used for or in connection with an activity that infringes copyright”. That means an unelected peer, Lord Peter Mandelson, now gets final say over content on the internet, albeit mediated by the courts. Forty-two other clauses were considered in just five minutes.
If you are British, please make sure you are registered to vote in the upcoming general election. As James Graham points out in the Guardian today, only a vote for the Liberal Democrats will do anything to fix the broken political system that allowed this to happen in the first place.