Breaking: + + + Amendment to Protect Bloggers Put Down + + +

blogoffWith only a few hours to go before the 3 pm deadline Guido is hearing that Lord Lucas is putting down an amendment to exclude small independent bloggers from the regulatory burden of the Royal Charter. The amendment is based on the wording proposed by BigBrotherWatch (see here).

The aim is to insert a new Schedule into the Crime and Courts Bill:

‘Exclusions from definition of “relevant publisher”

“A publisher who does not exceed the definition of a small or medium-sized enterprise as defined in Section 382 and 465 Companies Act 2006.”

This effectively takes out all small independent bloggers and re-calibrates the legislation to only cover what Tom Watson rightly calls “Big Media”. Hopefully this will command cross-party support…

Media Bitch Fight: Scrapbook v HuffPo

With the future of the blogosphere at stake today, Guido takes absolutely no pleasure in seeing two old friends turn on each other:

Roll on 3pm

Tom Watson Backs Blog Off

There is now cross-party unity condemning the Hacked Off drafted attempt to regulate the blogosphere, as Tom Watson backs the Blog Off campaign against control of the internet:

“It is clear to all but the very stupid that the new system should only apply to big media -with print operations that might also have a digital presence. Maria Miller should urgently clarify how this will be achieved.”

As one of the guilty men leading the charge against the free press, it’s better late than never.

Good to have a “propa blogger” on board…

Hacked Off Faces Backlash from Thousands of Bloggers
Effort to Exclude Small Enterprises from “Relevant Publisher”

blogoffLast night’s hasty launch of the Blog Off campaign for a free and unregulated blogosphere has seen over 2,400 people sign the petition telling Hugh Grant and Evan Harris where to put their regulations. Hacked Off are revising their hitherto arrogant stance and furiously back peddling this afternoon as the legislation they advocated has backfired after UK bloggers realised they would be pushed into costly and cumbersome regulatory organisations. Hugh Grant has just tweeted a link to a post on the Hacked Off website claiming that the proposals have not been endorsed by them:

“They have not been endorsed in any way by Hacked Off. On the contrary, at the weekend we urged the three parties not to approve them finally there and then, but to leave time for them to be improved. The parties agreed to this. For what it is worth, we believe the potential impact on bloggers and small publishers was unforeseen – an accident in the drafting – and we know of no reason why politicians might resist efforts to put things right.”

Frankly this is nonsense. If it were not for Hacked Off’s meddling there would be no danger of bloggers facing this vain attempt at regulation. Counter lobby Blog Off, backed by BigBrotherWatch, are urgently looking for a Peer willing to table an amendment by 3 p.m. tomorrow to protect independent bloggers. If you can help, email here.

Blog Off are looking to table an amendment that inserts into the Crime and Courts Bill a clause excluding from the definition of “revelant publisher” any enterprise that meets the definition of a small or medium sized enterprise as defined in Sections 382 and 465 Companies Act 2006.

There is, to coin a phrase, less than 24 hours to save the independent blogosphere…

Guido’s Warning to Liberal & Progressive Bloggers:
Royal Charter Aims for Tabloids and Guido, It’ll Get You Too

One thing that surprises Guido is that his comrades in the liberal, progressive blogosphere have seemingly not noticed that the proposed Royal Charter aims to control and regulate them as well as the tabloids.

Schedule 4, Point 1 of both the government and the opposition’s versions of the Royal Charter will bring blogs under the regulator’s control:

“relevant publisher” means a person (other than a broadcaster) who publishes in the United Kingdom: a. a newspaper or magazine containing news-related material, or b. a website containing news-related material (whether or not related to a newspaper or magazine)”

Now the What about Guido?” question has been answered by Maria Miller to Harriet Harman’s satisfaction, Guido’s rival bloggers should pause before rejoicing. You will all be regulated as well. British bloggers will, if politicians get their way, no longer have unregulated free speech on the internet.

big-sister-maria-miller

So to all those in the progressive blogosphere who support regulating the freedom of the press, Guido poses this simple question: will you defy the new regulator or submit to that system of state control you support? If it goes through the fun will start when fractious bloggers start complaining about their rival’s falsehoods and demanding they print due prominence corrections. The chaos of every petty flame war on the internet spilling over into the new statutory-backed regulator’s complaint procedure system will paralyse it. Have Maria Miller and Harriet Harman thought this through?

To all those bloggers who support this press control Charter because they hate Murdoch and Dacre, Guido offers this cautionary counsel, remember that the new regulator will cover you as well. You will have all the expense and bureaucracy of compliance as Murdoch and Dacre face, without the means. Unless like Guido and the Spectator you plan to become media outlaws too…

Two Left Feet Hires Blunder Blogger

A big welcome to Left Foot Forward’s new associate editor James Bloodworth. Rather awkwardly for the new boy at the bankrupt blogging slave workhouse, just a few days in, he’s already had a nightmare. Here is what Bloodworth wrote earlier:

Just the two problems. Gordon abolished it. And Ed didn’t promise to scrap it, he said he would bring it back. It’s been updated since. Pretty basic stuff, you would have thought, for Britain’s self-proclaimed leading wonk website…

H/T @IainChapman

UPDATE: Talking of left wing people saying ridiculous things. Here is Laurie Penny on the “Nato” invasion of Iraq. And here is Tim Stanley beautifully skewering her piece.

Sunny Huhne-dal’s Sagacity

sunny-hundalSince resolving in 2010 to not waste pixels on the unpopular parts of the blogosphere, we have kept to our word for three years. Today is just too good to let it pass.

Not many supported Chris Huhne on Twitter, here is what that well known progressive tweeter Sunny Hundal had to say, from his mum’s spare bedroom in Hillingdon, during the period that we pushed the Huhne story before the police investigation bore fruit:

Despite Sunny’s support he’s down now.

The story that Huhne-dal thought wasn’t “going anywhere”, is everywhere…

Political Workhouse: Lazy Socialists Miss Half the Story

Poor old Political Scrapbook. The union-sponsored socialists are not having a very good run of things this year. Firstly Guido exposed their worse-than-the-workhouse “volunteer” system – where you volunteer to do all the work on the site for free, and then you don’t even get any gruel. Moooore, you say?

Today Mr Bumble and his starving slave “interns” finally realised that the festive season was over and made it back to the workhouse; producing their first blogpost since way before Christmas; which consisted of a picture lifted from somewhere else. Sadly for the lazy socialists, the story was shot down within minutes by Kebab Time blogger @OnTablets:

It seems they are mocking Scrapbook’s progressive idols too.

Was it worth the waiting for? Well no…

Shame on Scrapbook and Left Foot Forward

With the New Statesman’s intern shame exposed over Christmas, former Staggers man Martin Bright asked if 2013 would see the end of unpaid internships. The answer, courtesy of lefty blogs Political Scrapbook and Left Foot Forward, is a resounding […]

Saturday Seven Up

This week traffic halved as people enjoyed the holidays and a mere 53,289 visitors visited 142,122 times viewing 215,522 pages. The top stories in order of popularity were:

[…]

Burnham’s PPS Repeated Loony Dr Eoin’s Fibs in Commons

debbie

Last night saw the fourth grovelling mea culpa from ‘Dr’ Eoin Clarke, and it was perhaps his best yet. Guido’s favourite Irish feminism historian was once again forced to “apologise wholly and unreservedly” this time to “Virgin Care, its employees, […]

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