I’ve complained before about how the contents of Erskine May, the rules used to govern business in the House of Commons and dating from the 19th century, are kept from the rest of us. Or rather, if you want a copy you have to pony up several hundred pounds because it is treated as a copyrighted work, only available if you pay up or find a way to borrow a copy.
As I wrote then:
Imagine if a new set of Parliamentary rules were written … and Parliament proposed not only that the rules must not be published online, but could only be available in book form for £268.40. There would be outrage. Why shouldn’t people be able to read the rules online? Why should people who want a hard copy be forced to pay out so much money?
Yet that’s the situation with Erskine May.
Thankfully, this is now changing: