Liberal Democrats believe that the revolution in Information Technology can create conditions for a more liberal world in which people are able to overcome traditional boundaries. We want to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to benefit from this revolution. Therefore we would:
- Provide government support for broadband rollout in cases where the market is failing and better connectivity would improve the economic potential of an area.
- Support continued widespread innovation in software by resisting the wider application of patents in this area.
- Work towards a copyright law for the digital age that supports artistic endeavour without imposing unnecessary restrictions on legitimate purchasers of work.
- Ensure that government plays an active role in supporting industry bodies that are seeking to raise the standard of material sent over the Internet.
- Promote the further development and take up of IT qualifications.
- Work with existing fora on IT skills requirements to make public recommendations both on domestic training needs and on the need to recruit labour from overseas.
- Review IR 35 to allow specialist contractors to charge reasonable and legitimate expenses against their pre-tax income.
- Improve the use of IT by government.
- Ensure that government delivers better services using IT.
- Replace crude quantitive e-government targets with indicators based on the quality of electronic service delivery systems.