OSI Opposes Barriers To Open Source Software For Television

The Open Source Initiative Board has added OSI to the list of organizations asking that the BBC not be allowed to add digital restriction measures to digital broadcasts in the United Kingdom. The BBC’s request to do so is being reviewed by the UK regulator, OfCOM, and OSI is supporting the position statement from the UK’s Open Rights Group and encouraging others to do likewise.

We believe the proposed digital restriction measures would be harmful to software freedom in the United Kingdom. Despite the existence of a variety of rights related to copyright materials, they would make the use of open source software for creating, distributing and enjoying many kinds of cultural creations at best harder and at worst illegal because of emerging anti-circumvention laws. Further, their use would contribute to the erosion of similar freedoms worldwide given the importance of BBC materials in global society and the probability that the dependence on such measures would become a characteristic of BBC materials.

While the OSI is an international rather than UK-specific organization, we thus support the position adopted by the Open Rights Group in the UK.