As some might know, OFCOM’s running a consultation on the aspects of the Digital Economy Act it’s supposed to enforce. Now, in theory, it’s supposed to be open until at least 5pm, but when I went to check the consultation document on another computer (so I could read both at once) I found a 404. Read more…
There are days when you just want to curl up into a ball. Today is one of them. I realised, when going to check back over things, that rather than the document I believed I had submitted as part of the PRO IP act consultation, I had actually submitted a copy of my comments to the US trade representative. I made the same mistake on my short piece about the submission.
The US Pirate Party had an rough draft of a reply and a means to submit it, if people didn’t want to write their own response, but I don’t do that sort of thing. I prefer a much more detailed (and as always, last minute) response, to try and cover the main facts. Again, I ran out of time, and just got it sent at the deadline (which was some 20 minutes ago).
So, here is the finished response, all 5 pages of it. [PDF]
UPDATE – please read here
Today, we had the release of the Digital Economy Bill, which is basically a way of taking the Digital world, and forcing it to try and confirm to the ‘Old Economy’.
There is one sure sign though, that this is because they don’t understand technology. Are you ready? It’s the pdfs of the consultation responses.
I published mine back here a few weeks ago, right after I sent it to them in fact. You can download it here. It is 272kb in size. The version included in this zip file (labelled Norton P2P Research – yes, they put me in with the companies, rather than in the individual responses) is 3.88MB
What’s the difference?
- Mine has colour. The image on page 9, and the graph on page 11 lose some of their impact without colour.
- My version has working source links.
- Even if they were de-hyperlinked, you could still copy the text and input them. You can’t select any text on the BIS version
- The footers, with the page numbering (important if you end up printing it out) and filename are missing on the BIS version.
- You can’t search for text on the BIS version
- The text can be hard to read (pg12), pages are skewed (pg7), lines sometimes shrunk (pg6),
- Finally, they added an extra, blank, page at the end
For all these changes, for the WORSE, they’ve increased the filesize 14x.
More importantly, these changes are discriminatory to the disabled. My version can be easily read, and can be read aloud by screen-readers. The BIS version can’t. They have actively taken a disabled-accessible document and made it INaccessible. Why is that? I’ve fired an email off to the man behind the consultation, Mike Klym at the BIS, lets see what he has to say.
If they can’t even effectively handle a simple thing like a pdf, is it any wonder that that we have such an arse-backwards bill as the Digital Economy Bill?
The UK P2P consultation closed yesterday. I submitted mine 10 minutes after the deadline, which was to quote Mike Klym in response to a question from my longtime friend and co-worker Ben Jones, “One second to midnight tonight!”
Mine was a little after the deadline, Google records the time as 14 minutes after the hour when it was finally sent (some typos and formatting errors needed correcting last minute). In the email, I apologized for being a little late.
Luckily, they were a little flexible with it, which is unusual for a government department. At 8:25am (BST) this morning, Mike Klym sent me the following reply:
We do allow for injury time!
Which is good:-). He also commented to one of the members of the UK Pirate Party this morning, congratulating them on being the last response in before the deadline. It seems Mike has a sense of humor. That’s great! All I can say is that reading the consultation document, I was certainly not laughing.
So, my response. As always, produced in OpenOffice, and exported directly to pdf. You can download it here. The document, like the site, is under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.