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Ofcom Turns Down Proposal To Incorporate DRM in Freeview HD

UK media regulator Ofcom has apparently rejected a proposal from the BBC to incorporate anti piracy technology in Freeview which would have prevented illegal copying of its high definition television programs citing objections from the Open Rights Group.

It is important to note that BBC had essentially wanted to alter the Freeview multiplex licence so as to include copy protection technology for programs which were shown on its HD channel.

However the proposal from BBC has been opposed by the Open Rights Group and Jill Killock who heads the organisation has written to Ofcom mentioning "Such action would permit the BBC to dictate who may provide equipment which accesses the channels it broadcasts - a clear violation of the free-to-air principle and an improper interference in the market by the BBC..”

After studying the issue, Ofcom has requested BBC to provide it with additional information in support of its arguments and has mentioned that till the concerns raised by the Open Rights Groups are addressed it will not permit the organisation to introduce anti piracy technology for Freeview HD.

The move by Ofcom to deny the plea from BBC has welcomed by many consumer right advocates who felt that the move from BBC could have hampered competition in the market.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.