Corporate attacks on the civil liberties of consumers have been happening for a long time, of course.

In the 1970s the infamous "Home Taping Is Killing Music" campaign promised dire consequences if the governments of the time didn't outlaw home stereos with integrated tape decks. The governments didn't comply, and music conspicuously failed to die.

In the 1980s, a movie industry apparently in the grip of hysteria likened the video cassette recorder to rapist murderer The Boston Strangler, and warned that if the device wasn't banned, the film industry would shrivel out of existence. The courts threw out the industry's attempts to legislate against the VCR, and the movie industry conspicuously failed to perish.

In the 1990s, the videogame business spent millions of pounds proclaiming that piracy would lead to the death of developers and return gamers to a primitive age where companies could only afford to make games like Pong and Space Invaders. Piracy boomed like never before, and yet in the 21st Century, the industry grows more massive every year, and talks of spending an average of $20 million on major new titles. Videogaming has, conspicuously, failed to expire.

And yet, despite 40 years of evidence proving beyond the slightest doubt that copying doesn't cause a shred of damage to the profits of the entertainment multinationals, the "neo-liberal" governments of the West have chosen now to implement the most draconian copyright legislation in history, denying consumers their fair and necessary basic rights (even while nominally retaining these rights on the statute books), in the service of increasing corporate profits.