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Elton John, Simon Cowell call on Government to act over piracy

Tim Ingham
Elton John

Music icons including Roger Daltrey, Sir Elton John, Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber and Pete Townshend have written a joint letter to the Prime Minister calling for a swift implementation of the DEA - and for No.10 to put pressure on search engines to help hurt piracy.

The letter comes as preparations for London 2012 kick into gear, following an IOC ceremony at the Royal Opera House last night.

It arrives the week after BPI CEO Geoff Taylor told the BBC's Newsnight that Google must de-list search results for torrent sites that faciliate illegal downloads.

The letter reads:

Dear Prime Minister,

As the world’s focus turns to the UK this summer, there is an opportunity to stimulate growth in sectors where the UK has a competitive edge. Our creative industries represent one such sector, which creates jobs at twice the speed of the rest of the economy.

Britain’s share of the global music market is higher than ever with UK artists, led by Adele, breaking through to global stardom. As a digitally advanced nation whose language is spoken around the world, the UK is well positioned to increase its exports in the digital age. Competition in the creative sector is in talent and innovation, not labour costs or raw materials.

We can realise this potential only if we have a strong domestic copyright framework, so that UK creative industries can earn a fair return on their huge investments creating original content. Illegal activity online must be pushed to the margins. This will benefit consumers, giving confidence they are buying safely online from legal websites.

The simplest way to ensure this would be to implement swiftly the long overdue measures in the Digital Economy Act 2010; and to ensure broadband providers, search engines and online advertisers play their part in protecting consumers and creators from illegal sites.

We are proud of our cultural heritage and believe that we and our sector can play a much bigger role in supporting UK growth. To continue to create world beating creative content, we need a little bit of help from our friends.

Yours sincerely,

Simon Cowell
Roger Daltrey CBE
Professor Green

Sir Elton John CBE
The Lord Lloyd Webber
Dr Brian May CBE
Robert Plant

Roger Taylor
Tinie Tempah
Pete Townshend
Katie Melua

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Tags: elton john, DEA, Digital Economy Act, Tinie Tempah, Pete Townshend, Simon Cowell

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