Dear Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS),

I have questions regarding the Digital Economy Act, specifically regarding the enforcement of regulations surrounding online pornography, expected to be enforced beginning April 2017.

1) The bill gives the government the power to choose a regulator to determine whether websites should require age-verification, which we know will be the BBFC. Can you provide details of the annual cost expected to be incurred by outsourcing this regulatory process to the BBFC? Ideally, the prediction for expenditure between April 2018 (when the restrictions become enforced) to April 2019.

2) Can the DCMS provide copies of any communications between the DCMS and the BBFC regarding costings for the regulatory process for online pornography?

3) Can the DCMS provide any information or communications at all regarding costing for the enforcement of age verification for online pornography in the UK?

4) Are there any communications available from within the DCMS where concern is expressed over costings for the Digital Economy Act? If so, would it be possible to receive copies of these communications.

Yours faithfully,

Sean Keach

FOI Mailbox, Department for Culture, Media and Sport

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Information Team at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. 
You will receive a response to your information request within 20 working
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no-reply@dcms.ecase.co.uk on behalf of Correspondence Team, Department for Culture, Media and Sport

FOI2017/03280

Mr Sean Keach

[FOI #424566 email]

Dear Mr Keach,

Thank you for your information request of 10 August 2017, in which you
requested the following:

Dear Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS),

I have questions regarding the Digital Economy Act, specifically regarding
the enforcement of regulations surrounding online pornography, expected to
be enforced beginning April 2017.

1) The bill gives the government the power to choose a regulator to
determine whether websites should require age-verification, which we know
will be the BBFC. Can you provide details of the annual cost expected to
be incurred by outsourcing this regulatory process to the BBFC? Ideally,
the prediction for expenditure between April 2018 (when the restrictions
become enforced) to April 2019.

2) Can the DCMS provide copies of any communications between the DCMS and
the BBFC regarding costings for the regulatory process for online
pornography?

3) Can the DCMS provide any information or communications at all regarding
costing for the enforcement of age verification for online pornography in
the UK?

4) Are there any communications available from within the DCMS where
concern is expressed over costings for the Digital Economy Act? If so,
would it be possible to receive copies of these communications.

Yours faithfully,

Sean Keach

I have dealt with your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
(the Act). We regret that we are unable to respond to your request because
it exceeds the cost limit set out by the Act. Section 12 of the Act makes
provision for public authorities to refuse requests for information where
the cost of dealing with them would exceed the appropriate limit, which
for central government is set at £600. This represents the estimated cost
of one person spending 3.5 working days in determining whether the
department holds the information, locating, retrieving and extracting the
information.

We consider your request would be over the statutory limit because in
order to retrieve all the information we might hold within scope of your
request, we would need to search through a very large quantity of
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If you would like further information regarding the cost limit and how it
is applied please refer to the Office of Public Sector Information website
using the link below:

http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si2004/2004324...

Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future
communications.

Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information Team

Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport

4th floor, 100 Parliament Street

London SW1A 2BQ

Tel: 020 7211 6395

www.gov.uk/dcms

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