Sections 17 and 18 of the Digital Economy Act are to be repealed
The Government has announced that it will seek to repeal the Digital Economy Act 2010, ss 17 and 18 'at an early opportunity'. These sections contain reserve powers to allow courts to order that access to websites dedicated to copyright infringement be blocked.
In August last year the Government announced it would not bring forward the site-blocking provisions in the DEA after Ofcom concluded the specific measures in the Act would not work in practice. The Government also cites the fact that rights holders have successfully used the CDPA, s 97A to secure court orders instructing ISPs to block access to web sites dedicated to copyright infringement. So far rights holders have secured orders for Newzbin2 and Pirate Bay.
Since the Government is committed to removing unnecessary legislation from the statute book and will therefore remove ss 17 and 18 of the DEA rather than leaving them in place unimplemented.