Items tagged "ACTA"

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ACTION ALERT: Tell the Obama Administration What You Think of ACTA

June 22, 2010 ACTA , DMCA , DRM , Piracy , Three Strikes

CLICK HERE TO WRITE THE WHITE HOUSE NOW

The Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement continues to roll along with negotiations taking place in Switzerland in the coming weeks. Rumor has it that these negotiations might be bringing us to a finalized ACTA soon, despite protests from public interest groups, technology companies, and legislators around the world that its ham-fisted approach to enforcement can do grave harm to consumers, innovation, communication, and can even make it harder for lifesaving medications to reach populations in need. It’s time to make sure that your voices are heard on this important issue. And we have two ways that you can do that. One is by signing a declaration of principles crafted by a coalition of experts assembled at American University. The other, more direct method is by writing to the President himself, using our action alert submission form.

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ACTA means trouble, but don’t take our word for it

June 10, 2010 ACTA , International

As we’ve said before, negotiations over the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) should include input from the public, not just a handful of industry groups trying to shoehorn international public policy around their agenda. We’re happy that the draft text of the agreement was officially released in April, that the European Parliament took a strong pro-transparency and pro-consumer stance, and that the office of the US Trade Representative, the executive-branch body negotiating for the United States, has made some overtures towards accepting public comments.

But today I’m writing on a slightly different topic: secondary liability, or holding one person responsible for the copyright-infringing behavior of another. As Rashmi and John have written, ACTA seeks to make big changes to other countries’ laws by mandating secondary liability. And we’re not the only ones worried about this: major industry groups on both sides of the Atlantic have weighed in against ACTA in a pair of letters.

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A Teachable Moment From Viacom’s “Coulton-gate”

June 9, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement , Filtering , Three Strikes

Video bloggers VLOG Brothers posted this entry about SpikeTV, a subsidiary of Viacom, violating musician Jonathan Coulton‘s Creative Commons License for one of his songs (I’ve included the video blog below). Briefly, Coulton has released a video of his song Flickr under a Creative Commons license allowing noncommercial use and requiring attribution. SpikeTV grabbed the video and played commercials before it and associated with while playing.

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USTR Special 301 report: Business as Usual

May 5, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement , Special 301

On April 30, this year the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) came out with this its Special 301 Report. The Report is disappointing in many respects. Despite unprecedented public input into the process and calls by public interest commenters to consider the importance of balance in copyright law, the report continues to promote a view of intellectual property (IP) law that tramples on user rights. By providing vague explanations for countries’ placement on watch lists and seemingly placing reliance on unsubstantiated and questionable rights-holder assertions, it completely ignores our calls for transparency and accountability.

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Finally Some Transparency: ACTA Negotiators Announce Release of Text

April 16, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement , Transparency

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) has announced today that it will be making the text of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) available to the public on April 21st. Here is the portion of the press release that talks about the latest round of negotiations in New Zealand and the decision to release the text:

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Who Wants ACTA Transparency (and who doesn’t)?

April 14, 2010 ACTA , Forum Shopping , International , Transparency

Even as more and more voices are calling for the Anti Counterfeiting Trade agreement to be made public, the United States Trade Representative is insisting in maintaining a veneer of secrecy over the proceedings. While numerous advocates and other governments (including the European Parliament, and officials in the UK, Canada, and the Netherlands (pdf, in Dutch)) are actively calling for full openness and transparency, the U.S.

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ACSBlog: The Trouble with ACTA

April 12, 2010 ACTA , Three Strikes , Trademark , Transparency , USTR

(cross-posted from the American Constitution Society blog)

 

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American University calls for papers on ACTA and Special 301

March 30, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement

The American Universities’ Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP) is calling for a series of working papers on the public interest impacts of intellectual property enforcement covering a wide range of issues including the Special 301 process and the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). While a lot has been written about ACTA’s secretive process and its Internet chapter, PIJIP’s initiative may lead to a much more comprehensive analysis of ACTA particularly, and the enforcement agenda generally.

As the American University’s website specifies, the papers should be 8-12 pages long and geared towards policy makers. Accepted papers will be presented at a workshop in Washington D.C. If you are interested in writing a paper, please contact Sean Flynn, Associate Director, PIJIP at pijip@wcl.american.edu. Abstracts should be submitted to pijip@wcl.american.edu by April 15.

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UPDATE: Take ACTION! Tell the Federal Government What You Think of Copyright Enforcement

March 23, 2010 ACTA , Fair Use , Patent , Piracy , Trademark

UPDATE: The deadline for comments passed at 5 p.m. today.

As John noted not too long ago, the new Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator has asked for your opinions on how the various government agencies involved with IP enforcement should go about doing their jobs—what harms of infringement should be addressed, and what changes in policies, regulations, and even the law, need to be made so that we can have a workable and effective national enforcement policy.

We want to make sure that enforcement efforts aren't so broad and indiscriminate that they target fair uses of copyrighted works, or use draconian tactics that will cut off Internet access for those merely accused of infringement. We also want to make sure that changes to enforcement policy and IP law are made in open forums, not in secretive agreements like the proposed Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement.

If you'd like to send your thoughts to the nation's first "IP enforcement czar," have a look at the request for comments and send in an email. Or, if you like, you can use our action alert form here.

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European Parliament Rebukes ACTA, Three Strikes – Et tu, President Obama? (Updated)

March 11, 2010 ACTA , International , USTR

As PK legal eagle John Bergmayer noted in his blog post on attempts to “harmonize” copyright across national boundaries, the European Parliament decidedly rebuked the Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) in a decisive 663 to 13 vote yesterday. The approved joint resolution calls for the immediate release of ACTA texts and public access to the negotiations and prohibits the EU from continuing to engage in secret talks with the other ACTA parties. Moreover, the resolution forbids EU member states from implementing so-called “three strikes” regimes, which some have reported or interpreted ACTA as prescribing. Finally, the resolution, “stresses that, unless Parliament is immediately and fully informed at all stages of the negotiations, it reserves its right to take suitable action, including bringing a case before the Court of Justice in order to safeguard its prerogatives.” Needless to say, this resolution holds the potential to deal a massive blow to the secretive ACTA treaty and to finally shine a light on a purposefully opaque process. Unfortunately, here in the United States, policymakers are singing a very different tune.

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