Remember How ACTA Wasn't Supposed To Be A 'Major' Change To Copyright Laws?

from the yeah...-not-so-much dept

One of the excuses given by the various trade representatives negotiating the ACTA treaty for the fact that they were keeping it quite secret, was that it wouldn't represent any significant change to copyright laws, and thus it was no big deal. Yet, the various drafts of the proposed treaty have suggested otherwise. TorrentFreak examines one of the latest leaked drafts and notes that it would require agreeing nations to change copyright laws concerning damages, pushing judges to consider every unauthorized file to be considered as a lost sale for the calculation of damages. This is a key point that plenty of folks have made clear over the years: assuming that every shared file would have been a lost sale is absolutely false. Putting that into the law and suggesting judges use that false concept as a basis for calculating damages is quite troubling. In the meantime, we're still trying to figure out why ACTA is even necessary? And... on top of that, no one has yet explained why industry lobbyists have been integral to the negotiations, but the public and public interest groups are being blocked from any information based on bogus national security claims.


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  1.  
    identicon
    Ima Fish, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 7:28am

    "we're still trying to figure out why ACTA is even necessary?"

    Because the copyright industry wants draconian laws in place but the legislatures of the world are hesitant to pass them in fear of pissing off their constituents. So this back-door approach compels the laws to be passed and lets the legislators off the hook because they can say that they "have to enact the laws to be in compliance with the treaty. It's completely out of our hands."

    "And... on top of that, no one has yet explained why industry lobbyists have been integral to the negotiations, but the public and public interest groups are being blocked from any information based on bogus national security claims."

    This one is even easier. Because the copyright industries do not want the public and public interest groups getting in the way. God, how hard was that?!

     

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  2.  
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    yogi, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:05am

    Democracy?

    Is the U.S. even a democracy anymore? Why pretend?

    I suggest the next election be conducted by an open auction: the highest bidder will get to choose the president. The bidding will also include specific laws.

    That way everyone will know who paid for what.

    This will save a lot of time and money for the candidates and the parties.

    It will also be a truly honest election as compared to the BS election system currently in place where millions of idiots vote for president based on looks and marketing ability.

    Now that is change I can believe in...

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Overcast, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:12am

    Get the FTC involved - lies on the web!!!

     

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  4.  
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    AC, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:16am

    Re: Democracy?

    The U.S. was never a democracy. In fact, the founding fathers frowned on it as two wolves and a sheep deciding what was for dinner. The U.S. was founded as a representative republic.

     

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  5.  
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    yozoo, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:18am

    Its the Chaney way

    "no one has yet explained why industry lobbyists have been integral to the negotiations, but the public and public interest groups are being blocked from any information based on bogus national security claims."


    Reminds me of Chaneys Secret Energy summit where experts like Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling helped shaped American Energy Policy in secret (prior to being convicted of fraud of course), hidden from the undue scrutiny of the meddelsome American People.

     

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  6.  
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    TheStuipdOne, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:23am

    Re:

    You know ... if this treaty goes into effect in the US then 100% of the blame rests on the US Senate. Sure negotiations take place. The president will sign off on it because he's shown himself to have very close ties with the RIAA. But then the senate has to approve it ... and they don't have to. So flood your senator's mailboxes with requests to vote against ACTA

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Ima Fish, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:33am

    Re: Re:

    "if this treaty goes into effect in the US then 100% of the blame rests on the US Senate."

    Sure, you could blame the Senate. But your incorrect assumption is that the system is fair and works for us. Or to put it another way, that the Senate looks out for our bests interests and that it really does have a choice in this matter. It's doesn't and doesn't. The copyright industry wants these laws and will get these laws. The Senate is just a cog in the wheel.

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    interval, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:34am

    Re: Re: Democracy?

    Can the sophistry, you know what yogi meant. And I agree with him, bum the front and just sell the presidency to the highest bidder. I think want to move to Greenland.

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    interval, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:36am

    Re: Its the Chaney way

    I remember that summer of '01, where Enron sold California's own nrg back to us. Sitting in mass transit on my way to work at my office on Market St., S.F., listening to the news about rolling blackouts... good times.

     

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  10.  
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    Malcontent, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 8:52am

    the answer is simple

    Stop listening to music from the evil companies.
    Don't buy it.
    Don't support it.
    And, for heaven's sake, don't STEAL it.

    Let the evil companies crash and burn, wondering what went wrong all the way down...

    Don't EVEN get me started on why we should have let the BANKS all crash and burn...

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Hulser, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 9:42am

    Re: the answer is simple

    And, for heaven's sake, don't STEAL it.

    If you're going to propose a boycot of the RIAA and the big music companies, you might not want to adopt their incorrect usage of the word "steal".

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 9:46am

    ...it wouldn't represent any significant change to copyright laws...

    Which nations's copyright laws are you talking about? The "problematic" verbiage replicated in the link largely reflects the law currently in force in the US.

     

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  13.  
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    Eponymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 10:19am

    Business as usual, kids.

    I'm agreeing with the AC above. Laws aren't put in place to help or protect the people anymore. They are enacted for two reasons, to serve the interests that finance re-election campaigns and to occasionally placate, but never serve, the individuals that listen to the re-election campaigns. That's how we got half of the ridiulously Onerous laws on the books at present.

     

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  14.  
    icon
    kirillian (profile), Apr 15th, 2009 @ 10:32am

    Re:

    Actually, it reflects the laws that the 'AAs would LIKE to have in force in the US currently.

     

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  15.  
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    TheStuipdOne, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 10:33am

    Re: Re: Re:

    but they still carry the blame

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Grizzly, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 11:06am

    Re: Business as usual, kids.

    If senators pay more attention to the big-money interests than to their constituents, it's because the big money interests actively (even aggressively) keep their points of view in front of the senators. The constituents, meanwhile, sit back and voice their opinions on blogs that the senators never see, but DON'T get politically active themselves. If you don''t like the way your senator has voted or has said he plans to vote, WRITE to him/her. One letter may not change a senator's vote, but a flood of them will.

     

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  17.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 1:28pm

    Transparency is the opposite of secret.

    Anything negotiated in secret is a major change to change a balance of power.

    They can negotiate it all they want, but it doesn't mean citizens will sign on to it.

    Transparency, on the other hand, breaks secrets. If it wasn't about a nefarious landgrab of power, it wouldn't be secret!

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 1:40pm

    In a nutshell

    The ACTA terminates the normal gov in the ACTA-countries and lets the MAFIAA and copyright interests rule them.

    Bad, veeery bad :(

     

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  19.  
    identicon
    Tgeigs, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 2:19pm

    Re: Re: Business as usual, kids.

    Agreed. The only thing a Senator needs more than money is votes.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Tgeigs, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 2:21pm

    Re: Re: Re: Democracy?

    It's not sophistry, it's factually correct. The American government is a Constitutional Republic, meaning that we elect people that choose for us, not represent us. That's a huge distinction.

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 4:23pm

    Re: Re:

    So flood your senator's mailboxes with requests to vote against ACTA

    You better include lots of cash with those requests if you want your senator to give a rat's behind about what you think.

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 4:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    but they still carry the blame

    They'll still be reelected. Blame the American people for that.

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 4:29pm

    Re: Re: Re: Democracy?

    Can the sophistry, you know what yogi meant.

    I just thought yogi was confused.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    alternatives(), Apr 15th, 2009 @ 4:51pm

    Re: the answer is simple

    Stop listening to music from the evil companies.


    Yup. The RIAA and others of their ilk should have a list of their clients whom they are supposed to represent.


    Use that list as the boycott list.

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Jason, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 5:14pm

    Re: Re: the answer is simple

    Hear, hear!

     

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  26.  
    identicon
    Jason, Apr 15th, 2009 @ 5:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Democracy?

    Actually we have both. Reps who are only in for 2yrs-a-pop are much more constituent-minded than Sens who sit pretty for 6. It can be legitimately argued that reps rep and Sens sin - I mean choose for us.

     

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