Mar 022010

Libraries and universities are protesting about plans to make them police users of wireless networks.

The government’s Digital Economy Bill includes plans to make them responsible for what is done over free wi-fi.

The plans imply that libraries, universities and cafes offering free wireless will be responsible if people use it to pirate movies and music.

Bodies representing universities want the law clarified so they are not hit with big bills for policing every user.

“We’re very concerned about this,” said Toby Bainton, secretary of the Society of College, National and University Libraries (Sconul). “We have been pressing them on this for quite some time.”

Some fear that the provisions in the Bill will also spell the end for the free wi-fi services that many coffee shops and restaurants offer to patrons.

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