Report: Spanish Minister Vows to Pass Site Blocking Anyway

A few days ago, we reported on the defeat of web censorship in Spain where ISPs would be mandated to block websites if the government ordered them to block them over copyright infringement. The law was brought forth due to US industry threats, lobbying and pressure. Now, news is surfacing that the defeat won’t be enough to deter site blocking in Spain.

Note: This is an article I wrote that was published elsewhere first. It has been republished here for archival purposes

There was no shortage of Spanish celebration when site blocking was defeated. Spanish copyright observers noted the celebrations on Spanish sites that a law the Spanish people fought so hard to defeat was finally shot down. For many Spanish, the Sinde Bill represented one of the very symbols of foreign industry intervention on the domestic marketplace and the very country itself. It’s no surprise many in Spain were happy to see foreign interference defeated by a vote.

So, does that mean that the war is finally over to stop US pressure? Apparently not. Reports are surfacing (Google Translate) that the government is vowing to force the issue and pass the legislation anyway.

From an additional report (Google translated):

In this sense, she stated that there is a parliamentary majority that believes in the basic content of this law and recognized that the PSOE presented to the Popular Party “generous offers” to take forward the text of the second final provision, but “there was no way “.

“But no matter how we try again because it is very important,” insisted Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba. “The Government’s position has significant support even in all media, I am convinced that we will get rebuild that consensus, and we’ll try it. And from there, see what is the legal instrument but we will try, “Rubalcaba stressed to the many questions from journalists on this issue.

Rubalcaba said the Sinde Act is “balanced” and “guarantor” when compared to the French or British law. “It’s very friendly, not at criminalize those who drop an album or a movie at all. What it does is preventing people from pirating. Is that the very term ‘hack’ is illegal by its very nature” concluded Rubalcaba.

So, apparently, what the Spanish people say and how the government votes is not enough to stop the passage of an unpopular law as far as the government is concerned. There’s a term for that, “Dictatorship”. The Spanish government did say that it would be difficult to pass the law, but they feel that they can be successful anyway after this defeat. This sort of behavior will only serve to polarize the debate on whether or not the government is able to block whatever they feel is unworthy of public consumption – be it copyright infringing or politically embarrassing like Wikileaks. Here’s hoping the representatives in government reminds the governing party that this sort of law was already defeated by defeating this additional attempt to get this unpopular bill passed – US industry interests come second to the will of the people. After all, Spain is a democracy, right?

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Google+.

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