Ex-BBC chairman attacks plan to legalise TV and music copying

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ALLOWING PEOPLE to legally copy TV, music and other content undermines copyright law and could see the end of original content in five years, a former BBC chairman has told the House of Lords.

Lord Grade condemned regulations proposed by Ministers to allow copying for personal use and urged a rethink of the whole issue.

He said the Hargreaves review, which reported to Ministers in 2011 on ways to modernise copyright for a digital age, should be scrapped.

Speaking during a motion on the Copyright and Rights in Performance (Personal Copies for Private Use) Regulations 2014, Lord Grade said: “What the web has unleashed is a global army of parasites who live off the investment that creative people have made in the UK and throughout the world.

“I have described publicly Google as a parasite... what the Government has failed to understand throughout its deliberations on copyright, since the Hargreaves report, is there is a direct correlation between investment and the investor’s ability to control and police its copyright, to protect that investment and ensure that it gets value for the investment it has made.”

“The Government seems to think... that there should be a free-for-all, that everything should be made free for the public.

“Yes – there is a public interest in that and it will last about five years because at the end of that there will be no more investment in original content.”

Under the first set of new regulations proposed people will be allowed to copy CDs they have bought or been given as a gift on to other personal devices.

Similarly, documents or books will be able to be transferred from one device to another for personal use.

The second set of regulations will allow the copying of works for the purposes of satire and parody.