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September 17, 2005

Mapping the digital rights landscape

A while back, when we first started talking about setting up ORG, I thought it would be a good exercise to explore the existing digital rights landscape in the UK. I wanted to create a mindmap which would allow me to see visually relationships between the various organisations working in this area (even if only very peripherally), and I based my map on work already done by Jo Walsh.

Unfortunately, events overtook me before I got to finish it, as you can see:

UK digital rights landscape

You can get the full-sized image from Flickr.

It really is a very much unfinished work, and I need your help to fill in all the gaps. For each organisation I need the key people, the issues that organisation addresses, and their website URL. Please leave info in the comments, rather than email me directly, so that then everyone can see what's already been found.

Right, over to you!



People: Sam Smith, Ray Miller, Alasdair Kergon, Mike Banahan, Alain Williams, roger Whittaker

Additional issue: Open Standards.

UKUUG is a good one.

Also, ABC, the Access to Broadband Coalition:
(Site appears to be down, but:

Open Spectrum UK is growing to be an important resource: it'd be great to give them more publicity:

and the guys at OfcomWatch:

Left a comment on this over at the Flickr page where the image is posted.

Great start.
also www.creativecommons.org.uk

I think it will be difficult to mesh all the names with all organisations/projects/ unless you really want to build a detailed map... e.g. Ross Anderson and Ian Brown's name should be up there somewhere too...

Great start - also

It will be challenging to mesh all the names unless you really want to build a detailed map... e.g. Ross Anderson's, should be up there somewhere near FIPR, etc..

Free Culture UK
Copyright, Creative Commons, Public Domain, free culture
No specific people.

Oh, and to Remix Reading you can add Remix Brighton...

I think you should give a mention to the excellent work of Microsoft's Kim Cameron, creator of "The Seven Laws of Identity" http://www.identityblog.com He's not in the UK, but naturally anything Microsoft does will have an effect in the UK, and the Seven Laws also give some clear reasons why Charles Clarkes plans just wont be accepted. I believe a more mature system of identity as proposed by Kim is key to the digital rights landscape.

Contacts for No2Id. I'm not sure which is the most relevant - I've spoken to Phil Booth a couple of times and he's always got back to me fairly quickly.

Simon Davies - chair@no2id.net
Phil Booth - national.coordinator@no2id.net
Andy Robson - campaigns@no2id.net
Rachael Marsh - public.affairs@no2id.net

Consume's website:
Consume's figurehead is James Stevens:
james (at) spc.org

Hmmm, from a privacy and data protection viewpoint, I am a bit worried about naming individuals , unless they formally hold a public organisational title.

Any "digital rights landscape" map, can easily also be made to serve as a "list of co-conspirators" etc.

Some individuals could well appear under more than one organisation , if someone were to feed in this data to professional intelligence visulisation software such as, say, the Link Analysis tools available in I2's Analyst's Notebook, as used by almost every Police force and intelligence agency in Europe

Conversely, of course, this same technique could be used to map out an "anti- digital rights" landscape of organisations with vested interests and individual organisational representatives who oppose "digital rights".

One massive area of personal data and digital rights, which is already being abused by our Government and by commercial players, which seems to be missing from the current map, is that of Human Genetics data, which raises privacy, security, copyright, public health, ethics, patent law, data retention and other issues.

This is an area where even the latest UK legislation such as the Human Tissue Act 2004 is not up to speed with even current scientific knowledge and technology e.g. there is only mention and regulation of DNA samples and digitaly processed "DNA fingerprints", whilst even now, similar Human Genetic data could be obtained from RNA, or from Chromosome Analysis or Protein Folding data etc., all of which are likely to become more commonplace in the future.

Perhaps you need to add in organisations such as Gene Watch UK to the list.

Thanks for all the comments and additions, everyone.

I'm aware that there's going to be overlap with the same people involved in more than one organisation. I have yet to see any way of cleanly representing highly interlinked networks, so I'll have to live with the duplications!

Regarding this dataset, I don't think there's any information I'm after that's not already in the public domain.

I will certainly add Gene Watch UK to the list, and DNA sampling to our list of potential issues.

If you've got Remix Reading, you might also find CNUK and it's Leeds and Exeter groups of interest.

Open Street Map have an offshoot http://www.freethepostcode.org/

The map looks great!

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