Geo-Blocking Exceptions

The Pirate Party UK welcomed the EU Commission's proposal to allow people to access media abroad that they pay for at home.

If passed, the law could allow people to access TV, films, sports broadcasts, music, e-books, games and other media that they have rented at home. This benefit may extend to service providers such as Google Play, iTunes, Spotify, Sky Go, BT Sport, Amazon e-books, BBC and others.

Pirate Party Spokesperson George Walkden said:

"We welcome this positive step, but recognise that it is only a very small exception to the much larger issue of geo-blocking in general. This is merely adding minor loopholes to the already problematic issue of geo-blocking and the proposals do not go nearly far enough. We believe that, instead of trying to work around the problems of geoblocking, we should be looking to remove geoblocking entirely."

In a digital world where information and digital content is free to travel across continents as quickly as across towns, it makes very little sense to restrict distribution of content by location. We believe that content should be free of borders and that attempts by media owners to continue their old world business models are doomed to failure. We have already started to see an increase in the use of proxies to attempt to get around geo-blocking for many applications and users.

The disallowance of proxies by providers such as Netflix and geoblocking in general has led to the possibility of our geographic location being released as a condition to being able to simply watch, read or listen to online content. We do not have to give up our location when we open a newspaper, and so we should not have to give up our location in order to read an article online.

Monday, 15 February, 2016 - 22:00
George Walkden

About the Press Team

Pirate Party spokespeople are always ready to give a lively, informed, and often provocative view on the issues of the day. Whether it's tech politics, civil liberties, the EU, local issues or anything else we'll have something to say.

How can I contact the Press team?

For interview requests, specific statements or quotes email the Press Office at [email protected].  You can sign up to receive press releases or find more contact details on our contact page if you would like to get in touch with a specific person or team.

If you would like further information about a specific person you can find biographies and images on their profile page by searching our staff and volunteer list and you can access some of the many appearances online, in print, on TV and radio from our press hits.