Last 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…