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[News] The ACTA Conspiracy Exposed Even Further

  • Subject: [News] The ACTA Conspiracy Exposed Even Further
  • From: Roy Schestowitz <newsgroups@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 06 Feb 2010 03:21:01 +0000
  • Followup-to: comp.os.linux.advocacy
  • Newsgroups: comp.os.linux.advocacy
  • User-agent: KNode/4.3.1
Hash: SHA1

What Really Happened At the ACTA Talks in Mexico?

,----[ Quote ]
| With the conclusion of the 7th round of ACTA 
| negotiations in Guadalajara, Mexico last 
| week, participating countries issued the 
| now-standard boilerplate statement that 
| merely repeats the agenda items and provides 
| no real insight into the progress of the 
| talks.  While the statement is does little 
| to advance the desire for greater 
| transparency, reports from New Zealand and 
| Sweden shed far more light on where things 
| stand.


ACTA Negotiators Report No Breakthroughs On Transparency 

,----[ Quote ]
| [Updated:] The Chamber issued a statement 
| last week supporting transparency within 
| limits and describing the talks as trade 
| negotiations. âGiven the importance of this 
| agreement to our economy and to consumers, 
| we must not allow ACTA to be derailed by a 
| minority opposed to protecting the rights of 
| artists, inventors, and entrepreneurs,â it 
| said. âThe US Chamber has also been 
| supportive of greater transparency in these 
| talks. We recognise the constraints of 
| international trade negotiations; however we 
| urge the administration to ensure the 
| congressional committees of jurisdiction - 
| as representatives of the American people - 
| are fully briefed on the scope of the ACTA 
| negotiations and why concluding this 
| agreement expeditiously is in the countryâs 
| best interests.â


But, Wait, Didn't The Entertainment Industry Insist ACTA Wouldn't Change US Law?

,----[ Quote ]
| It's been amusing watching the entertainment 
| industry lobbyists try to come up with 
| talking points in support of their most 
| favored trade agreement du jour, ACTA. A 
| popular one is that nothing in it can or 
| will change US law. But, of course, if you 
| talk to the folks who know how these things 
| work in DC, you quickly learn that's 
| hogwash. There wouldn't be any ACTA at all 
| if it wasn't out to change the laws, and it 
| wouldn't be so secretive if it was just 
| designed to keep the status quo.


USTR: A Lot Of Misperception Over ACTA, But We Won't Clear It Up Or Anything

,----[ Quote ]
| Via Michael Geist, we're pointed to a short 
| interview with a representative from the US 
| Trade Reps office, where the issue over ACTA 
| concerns is raised, and the response is 
| almost comically ridiculous. Stan McCoy, the 
| assistant US Trade Representative for 
| intellectual property and innovation, 
| responds to complaints by saying that there 
| has been a lot of misrepresentation about 
| ACTA and that it really has a lot about 
| counterfeiting and isn't just about 
| copyright. And....? Well, that's it. 


ACTA absurdity continues, may only get worse

,----[ Quote ]
| The saga of the misleadingly named "Anti-
| Counterfeiting Trade Agreement" has only 
| gotten more ridiculous since I decried it in 
| November.
| For those of you whose eyes (understandably) 
| glaze over at any mention of multilateral 
| trade agreements, ACTA is an attempt by the 
| United States and dozens of other countries 
| to write new rules to combat counterfeiting 
| of trademarked goods, as its name suggests, 
| and to stop copyright violations as well, a 
| goal left out of its moniker. (If you've got 
| a spare 90 minutes, you can watch a video of 
| a panel discussion I led about ACTA at 
| Google's Washington offices last month.) 
| [...]
| That level of secrecy has begun to draw 
| criticism from groups that were early 
| proponents of ACTA. For example, in November 
| the Motion Picture Association of America 
| wrote a letter to U.S. Trade Representative 
| Ron Kirk requesting greater transparency and 
| public participation. And at the end of 
| January, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce voiced 
| similar thoughts in a press release -- 
| sentiments that went unsaid in a June 2009 
| endorsement of ACTA.


ACTA Goes on the Charm Offensive sans Charm

,----[ Quote ]
| Sorry to rattle on about ACTA, but it seems 
| there's something of a concerted campaign to 
| "counter" all the noise we little people are 
| making. Here's a line that might sound 
| familiar, this time from Stanford McCoy, 
| "Assistant United States Trade 
| Representative for Intellectual Property and 
| Innovation":
|     Intellectual property protection is 
|     critical to jobs and exports that depend 
|     on innovation and creativity. Trade in 
|     counterfeit and pirated products 
|     undermines those jobs and exports, 
|     exposes consumers to dangerous knock-
|     offs from toothpaste to car parts, and 
|     helps fund organised crime.


EU Official Caught in the ACTA

,----[ Quote ]
| Ah-ha: what this reveals is that the reason 
| ACTA won't "rewrite" the rules is because 
| the rules are *already there*, according to 
| this interpretation: ACTA will simply 
| foreground them. It's tacitly admitting that 
| there are latent ACTA-like provisions in the 
| eCommerce laws; the big difference is that 
| ACTA will activate them, so to speak.



Brussels denies rumours of secret anti-piracy treaty

,----[ Quote ]
| But Koehler added that the Parliament will be
| expected to endorse ACTA as it would be a sign
| of mistrust in the European Commission if it
| did not.
| "It is crystal clear that ACTA will go
| through," Koehler said.


The digital economy versus the Digital Economy Bill

,----[ Quote ]
| I was at an Open Rights Group event in Edinburgh yesterday,
| about lobbying MPs regarding the DE Bill. One of the attendees,
| Hugh Hancock, pointed out that he will likely be harmed by the
| DE Bill, even though he is a creative person who is part of the
| digital economy, one of the very group of people this bill is
| ostensibly intended to help. (Of course, we all know that the DE is
| really there to protect the content distribution industry, not creative people).


Anti-Piracy Scheme âA Scam & Legal Blackmailâ Say UK Lords

,----[ Quote ]
| Several UK Lords have criticized the
| practices of law firms that send out
| warning letters to alleged copyright
| infringers demanding big payments. These
| schemes have been labeled a scam, and the
| lawyers operating them accused of
| âharassment, bullying and intrusionâ and
| âlegal blackmailâ in the House of Lords.

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