PA backs Mandelson's plan to combat piracy

<p>The Publishers Association has said it &quot;welcomes with open arms&quot; the proposals to punish persistent illegal file sharers with internet suspension, to which Lord Mandelson gave his backing this week. Mandelson has put forward a three strikes policy for the suspension of internet access, stressing it would be a &quot;fair, thorough process, involving clear warnings&quot; and only used as &quot;a last resort&quot;.</p><p>Benjamin King, head of policy and communication at the PA, said there had been no &quot;major&quot; surprises with the statement, which was broadly in line with announcements made by the government in August. &quot;On the file sharing side it is a good result - clearly Lord Mandelson has grasped the importance of copyright enforcement to the creative industries,&quot; King said. &quot;He has been saying very positive things along those lines for the last few months, and we welcome with open arms yesterday&#39;s announcement.</p><p>&quot;As an industry, we are not out of the woods yet - we don&#39;t know, for example, the extent to which the Conservatives will take these proposals forward if we find ourselves under a Conservative government. But it does set the tone for the longer-term copyright agenda.&quot;</p><p>However, King warned that other suggestions made in yesterday&#39;s announcement - notably to open up access to orphan works and making it legal to share files with close friends of family - would need to be &quot;thoroughly thought through... because there is a very real danger that the industry could become compromised [by such a move]&quot;.</p><p>He added: &quot;It&#39;s not unreasonable on the face of it, but it depends how it is drawn - if it is overly broad, it could have unintended consequences.&quot; Regarding the opening up of orphan works, which he said the PA &quot;whole-heartedly supported&quot;, King recommended limiting the ability to issue licences to collecting societies rather than commercial organisations. </p><div> </div><div> </div><div> </div><div> </div><div> </div><div> </div><p>&nbsp;</p>