How do I bring issues to the attention of people that matter?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
Hi guys

I have a small issue that I want brought to the attention of the authorities as I believe it's unfair. Basically, it's the issue of hidden restrictions on products covered by IP laws where they do not have to explicitly or implicitly tell you that there are restrictions in place. You can buy spore today in a shop and it won't say anywhere you may only install it a limited amount of times, or that you aren't allowed to sell it second hand.

I want the government or whoever to change the way things are done so there is a legal requirement (like age ratings) that any restrictions on the use are simply displayed without any jargon. So you might buy a music download and it has to say on the website 'locked to one device'. Or you might buy a computer game in a store and on the box it has to say 'online activation required' or 'cd required' or '3 installs maximum'.

I think this is fair as then the average consumer can make an informed decision and it makes companies more accountable for what they do when selling products with restrictions on.

Of course I expect the government to reject my ideas but I think it's fair to know what you are getting - it's more relevent today now since there are products coming out now with particularly heavy restrictions on use and there is still no legal requirement to display this information. There are actually games out there where they will install hidden spyware on your computer which will lock out the game if you are using certain other software packages as well.

Imagine if you bought a CD and it wouldn't work because it detected you had a walkman in your house.

So how do I change the law? :)

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    So how do I change the law? :)
    Break it, until they get the picture.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Break it, until they get the picture.

    By sticking stickers on all the packaging?

    :chin: That sounds like a good idea actually. Make a website with stickers for different games that are bad for restrictions, people download the stickers and go into game shops and do a bit of fun applying consumer information. It's not technically vandalism, is it? :p
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    By sticking stickers on all the packaging?

    Err, well I was thinking piracy myself, but whatever works for ya. Like Banksy with Paris Hilton's single.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Write to your MP, also write to BERR (Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform)

    The Rt Hon John Hutton MP
    Secretary of State
    Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform
    1 Victoria Street
    London SW1H 0ET

    The Department should reply, it may be a shit answer, but it means that its drawn to someone's attention. If they don't reply in about 2-3 weeks, pester them (nicely) on 020 7215 5000.

    As games are shared with DCMS, you may also want to write to them, but I'd try BERR first as it sounds more like a regulatory issue.

    PS after playing Spore and finding it the most boring, overhyped game ever I can't see why anyone would want to install it more than once.:p
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    That is my MP. :D

    Can you not start with someone like Trading Standards? If they get a lot of complaints, don't they usually bring these things to the government's or media's attention?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    That is my MP. :D

    Can you not start with someone like Trading Standards? If they get a lot of complaints, don't they usually bring these things to the government's or media's attention?

    I don't think its a Trading Standards issue - as my understanding is that they deal with breaches of the law, whilst this sounds like wanting a new law.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Ah well. Unless you're capable of organising a mass letter-writing campaign, I'd guess that consumer pressure groups would be your best bet.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It could be worth contacting an EU commissioner or an MEP with a decent record on consumer/technology issues. I'm not sure which commissioner it would fall under - probably Viviane Reding.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    That [John Hutton] is my MP. :D
    And having him as your MP is something to boast about? :p
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It could be worth contacting an EU commissioner or an MEP with a decent record on consumer/technology issues. I'm not sure which commissioner it would fall under - probably Viviane Reding.

    Done the MEP one the other day but don't know about her record.

    http://www.gleniswillmott.eu/

    I have bad luck with politicians either fobbing me off or ignoring me altogether, mind you.
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