Digital Economy opponents raise £13k in hours

Opponents of the Digital Economy Bill have raised more that £13,000 in a matter of hours to run a series of ads designed to block the bill.

Digital Economy opponents raise £13k in hours

The Stop the Digital Economy Bill campaign, which is being orchestrated by digital campaigners 38 Degrees and the Open Rights Group, aims to halt the bill’s rapid progress through Parliament. The wide-ranging bill – which covers everything from digital radio to cutting off broadband connections – is due to be debated for only one day in the House of Commons. The very same day (6 April) that Gordon Brown is expected to announce the General Election.

The campaigners plan to run a series of national newspaper and website adverts on that day, highlighting what they claim is a bid by the music industry to push the law through.

When you force something into law that has huge sweeping powers people get concerned

The campaign set up a donations site at around 8am this morning and has already seen a surge in support, generating more than £13,000 from more than 700 donors at the time of publication. The site also includes a system for writing to your MP in opposition to the bill.

“Over 18,000 people have written to their MPs in the past week and there seems to be a lot of anger that MPs aren’t listening to them,” said John Chatterton, a campaigner with the movement. “When you force something into law that has huge sweeping powers people get concerned.”

The Digital Economy Bill has raised concern among campaigners and the IT sector for its powers to cut off file-sharers and to block websites that are hosting copyrighted content.

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