Mandelson steals net villain crown

Peter Mandelson’s influence over the controversy strewn Digital Economy Act has landed him ISPA’s Internet Villain of the Year award.

Mandelson steals net villain crown

Lord Mandelson is widely (dis)credited for siding with the copyright industry and introducing draconian legislation into the act, which could see ISPs forced to hand over details of persistent file-sharers and compelled to block sites accused of hosting copyrighted material.

Yesterday, ISPs BT and TalkTalk applied for a judicial review of the Digital Economy Act, claiming that the legislation wasn’t given due scrutiny in its whistle-stop passage through the House of Commons at the tail-end of the last parliament.

The ISPA Council decided that Lord Mandelson was a deserved winner of the villain award for ignoring principles of better regulation

It’s little surprise, therefore, that the Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA) decided to hand Mandelson its tongue-in-cheek award. It’s equally unsurprising that the former Minister failed to turn up in person to collect his award at last night’s ceremony.

“The ISPA Council decided that Lord Mandelson was a deserved winner of the villain award for ignoring principles of better regulation to amend an open consultation following lobbying from an interest group – no prizes for guessing which one,” the organisation stated.

Fellow Labour politician Tom Watson MP collected ISPA’s Hero of the Year gong for his strident opposition to the Digital Economy Act. Watson broke the then Government whip to vote against the Act, which left him feeling “physically sick”, according to his Twitter feed.

ISPA has a rather love/hate affair with the Digital Economy Act. Last year, it nominated Lord Carter as a hero for his work on the Digital Britain report, which was the forebear of the Digital Economy Act.

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