The House of Lords, which serves as the upper house of the Parliament of the UK, will now allow smartphones and tablet devices to be present during debates on the condition that they remain silent. The about face was formally expressed in a new report from the Lords Administration and the Works Committee who said that current restrictions on electronic devices were “incomplete, outdated, and contradictory.”
Going forward, electronic devices will be allowed in for the next calendar year on a trial basis.
The report states in part:
“Members taking part in proceedings should be able to use electronic devices to access Parliamentary papers and other documents which are clearly and closely relevant to the business before the House… Members should not be permitted to use the Internet to search for material that might be used in the course of proceedings, but which is not generally available to participants by other means.”