DCMS debate:
The Department for Culture, Media and Sport this week “launched a major debate on how Britain can become the world’s creative hub”. This arrived in the shape of former No.10 Policy Unit whizz-kid James “I know what Tony is thinking” Purnell, who gave a speech to a leftie London think-tank. The title of the speech? Er, “Creative Britannia” (presumably a chav-free Dome-free version of the old Cool Britannia). So, I visit the DCMS web site in search of the touted ‘Creative Industries discussion-forum’. But… bother; it’s password-protected. Right down at server level. No sign-ups possible, without first being intimately frisked by .gov techies. Perhaps the DCMS ‘Consultations’ page has some info? Er, no; the most recent DCMS consultation was in March. Anyway, so what’s on the DCMS agenda? Some major protectionist deckchair-shuffling, by the sound of it. They’re considering setting up a Music Council along the lines of the Film Council, to… “advocate the music industry’s interests and work with the government over legislative and regulatory issues”. There’s to be a stocktake of £5-billion worth of weaknesses in Labour’s film production policy, to be carried out by an impartial auditor the Film Council. And a commitment to ‘modernise’ copyright and IP protection, led by open licensing / Creative Commons gurus the Department of Trade and Industry. No mention of the support for the interactive games sector that the Sony boss was begging the government for a few weeks ago.