David Cameron has appointed an Iron Maiden-loving Conservative MP to advise the government on new measures to crack down on music piracy.
Mike Weatherley, MP for Hove and Portslade, who previously worked as the finance director of Pete Waterman Group, the entertainment company behind singers such as Kylie Minogue, will recommend measures to tackle copyright infringement.
Mr Weatherley, who previously worked as vice-president for Europe at the Motion Picture Licensing Company, which enforces copyright for the film industry, takes on the newly-created role as the Prime Minister’s adviser on intellectual property.
A heavy metal fan, Mr Weatherley promised to wear an Iron Maiden T-shirt in the Commons chamber after he was elected in 2010 but was denied permission by the Speaker.
He founded Rock The House, an annual talent competition featuring young bands nominated by MPs, which concludes with a gig on the Commons Terrace.
The event, endorsed by Alice Cooper and Roger Daltrey, was designed to advance the cause of effective music copyright with fellow parliamentarians.
Mr Cameron told music industry executives about the appointment at a meeting in Downing Street, where a new £3 million fund to help independent record labels boost their success abroad, was unveiled.
A new Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit has been created, with £2.5 million in funding, which will tackle websites that exploit music illegally. The music industry is also seeking mechanisms requiring Internet Service Providers to block illegal sites such as Pirate Bay.
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