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

from the um...-why-not? dept

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.

You see, this is the point where Stan McCoy or Ron Kirk or anyone in the USTR's office should explain what those misperceptions are, by telling us what's actually being negotiated. But, of course, they don't. The USTR keeps insisting that it's going to be more transparent, but hasn't actually done anything. If anything, over the last couple months, the USTR has become even more secretive about ACTA. Saying that people aren't accurately describing what's in the document, and then not saying what's actually in the document, doesn't help matters. It just makes us wonder who the USTR is representing, because it certainly does not appear to be the American people.

Furthermore, McCoy is being willfully disingenuous, in saying that the "misperception" is that "this agreement will focus mostly or exclusively on copyright infringement in the digital environment." No one has been suggesting that at all. Everyone knows that it covers real counterfeiting as well -- but the part people are concerned about is the intellectual property part, because it's being shoved into ACTA as if copyright infringement and counterfeiting are the same thing (or at least very similar) when they're not. So his next statement is meaningless:
"The threat of physical goods bearing counterfeit trademarks is a real one and it is a priority for ACTA. Americans do not want to brush their teeth with counterfeit toothpaste or drive a car with knockoff brakes."
That implies people are arguing otherwise, but no one is. Of course, we don't want dangerous counterfeits, but that's not the issue. The issue is using ACTA as a back door to changing IP laws in a way that does not reflect what's best for the country.


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  1.  
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    quasi.entrepreneur@gmail.com, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 5:58am

    I'd like to suggest a site, TechCofounder.com, which is an online directory of developers and engineers who are interested in starting a new company or working on side projects.

     

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    Ima Fish (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 5:59am

    "It just makes us wonder who the USTR is representing, because it certainly does not appear to be the American people."

    Mike, you forgot the sarcasm tag.

     

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    Ima Fish (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:03am

    If this treaty actually was related solely to the counterfeiting of physical goods no one would have a fricken problem with it.

    The only reason people are upset about the treaty, and the only reason the treaty is cloaked in secrecy, is because it will affect our consumer and constitutional rights by making our copyright laws more draconian.

    The only way they can screw us over is by doing it in secret.

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:06am

    We, the People.

    The people are in charge, Mike, and in an elective democracy, the people decide what is best for them.

    The ACTA will finish it's preparation, launch, bring an entirely new layer of protections and refinements to digital product and distribution for the years ahead, and the people will accept it. Why?

    Because with the exception of a very small but vocal group outside the mainstream who post over and over, (and over and over) the vast majority the world over not only accepts "price for value" as a basis of fair commerce, but warmly embraces the long held notion of product value and viability for sale, for SALE, not infringement, no matter what the format. "Product is product" trumps all in the hearts and minds of humans. Even when a culture supports infringing, that culture knows it's wrong but makes a cultural "carve out" for that behavior. Think of what's happening to Bollywood, for example.

    These ideas are ingrained across the globe not because industry wants it that way. There are countless examples of evolving principle that have not always been to industrial benefit. But these ideas remain because they are consistent with deeply held, widely shared, intrinsic understandings of what "fair" is. And no mere merchandise format shift is going to change those long held, very fair principles. You know that as well as anyone. And that's why the ACTA (and every refinement that comes after) will be at first regarded, then accepted and eventually warmly embraced. The people have always been in charge.

     

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    Dementia (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:18am

    Re: We, the People.

    We, the people, want to know what is in ACTA. If it only involves counterfeiting of physical goods, no problem, but if they are negotiating to change our laws without input from those who will be affected by the laws, then its a big problem. There are a number of congressional representatives who want to know what's in ACTA, but don't. THEY are the ones who are constitutionally authorized to enact or change laws, not the US Trade Representatives. If the law makers aren't even aware of what laws are being affected, then it shouldn't be negotiated at all. In case you aren't fully aware, the way its being run, it won't need congressional approval like most treaties, just a signature from Obama, and its a done deal. There has been no representation of the American people anywhere in this process, and that is the biggest problem of all.

     

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    Steven (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:19am

    Re: We, the People.

    Interesting. Just one question. If we the people are so ready to warmly embrace these new laws, because we know how right an fair they are, why is everybody so afraid that we the people might actually get to know what is in them?

    Hell, even out elected representatives are being shut out of the negotiations.

    There is nothing right or fair about the repeated shredding of the public domain.

     

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    Ima Fish (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:24am

    Re: We, the People.

    "the vast majority the world over not only accepts..."

    Apparently you've never heard of the Chinese. Our notion of government granted monopolies have not been accepted by a billion people living there. There is no moral or ethical considerations because the mere notion of owning an infinite "product" is simply beyond reason. Well, their reason.

    And despite what you think, the vast majority of Americans find it ludicrous that a person who was brutally raped is worth about the same as the the downloading of 24 songs. (Remember, there was no evidence at trial that she shared any music.)

    If you want to live in a world where government granted monopolies are worth more than people, that's fine. I hope they give you plenty of grass to graze.

     

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    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:26am

    Because with the exception of a very small but vocal group outside the mainstream who post over and over,

    i.e. The group of educated people who have thought about the issues, who understand the technology and are aware of the implications.

    the vast majority the world over not only accepts "price for value" as a basis of fair commerce, but warmly embraces the long held notion of product value and viability for sale, for SALE, not infringement, no matter what the format. "Product is product" trumps all in the hearts and minds of humans.

    If that really was the case then you wouldn't need to even make laws against infringement since the only infringers would be that "small minority" that you referred to earlier.

    The fact that the industry is lobbying for copyright clauses in ACTA and 3 strikes laws elsewhere and comes up with huge numbers of losses and filesharers proves that they (or is it you?) don't actually believe what you just said.

    Even when a culture supports infringing, that culture knows it's wrong but makes a cultural "carve out" for that behavior. Think of what's happening to Bollywood, for example.

    and with that thought another epicycle was added to the Ptolemaic solar system.

     

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    senshikaze (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:26am

    Re: We, the People.

    no, you have it wrong.
    people will let this pass because the govt will say it is "for their protection" and to "stop terrorists"

    people are sheep. They don't care about economics.

    If this isn't such a problem, then why have all these laws? How about instead of treating people like children, we treat them like equal citizens in this world economy. Drop ACTA, fix the patent system, and copyright laws, and let's get back to working on the important things like disease, poverty, and war.

    (oh and this isn't an elective democracy, it is a constitutional democratic republic. Completely different. The Constitution is a higher power than mob rule in our system.)

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:37am

    Re: We, the People

    Dementia, I think what you say is true to a point. But I also think this treaty will regard both digital goods AND physical goods with equal validity, and until a compelling reason why it should not gains more than minor grassroot support, "product is product" will out. I don't think people actually want the act of creating in a digital format to lose price to unlawful duplication, in fact I think only a diminishing circle of IP destructors do.

    IP is not only a huge backbone of international trade and taxation, it is surely going to grow larger with time. Creating proprietary products in digital format is just as valid as creating proprietary material product. It's not realistic to imagine that industry just walks away from 50 years of digital product development and government just throws in the towel on the tax revenue it creates. So it's reasonable to expect treaties to reflect this "product is product" market standard as we migrate to digital, even as we remain free to create in the Creative Commons arena and give it all away as we wish.

    And i think the overwhelming majority of the people know this, understand this, and inevitably, embrace this, and that's why the ACTA will prevail.

    International treaties have been negotiated privately before, for the same reasons anonymous speech on the internet allows for the freer discussion of the issues at hand. The people will have every chance to influence this through the elective process, and they will speak on this issue when the time comes. I believe only the smallest ripple of protest from IP destructors will manifest and the ACTA sails through. I could be wrong, but I don't think so.

     

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    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:40am

    Re: We, the People.

    "Because with the exception of a very small but vocal group outside the mainstream who post over and over, "

    Ok let's see how your assertion stands up as measured by petition response on the No10 website in the UK

    http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/list/open?sort=signers

    You'll see that the anti-three strikes petition is one of the top issues - with 30000+ signatories.

    Doesn't sound like a small minority to me...

     

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    herodotus (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:43am

    "Because with the exception of a very small but vocal group outside the mainstream who post over and over, (and over and over) the vast majority the world over not only accepts "price for value" as a basis of fair commerce, but warmly embraces the long held notion of product value and viability for sale, for SALE, not infringement, no matter what the format. "Product is product" trumps all in the hearts and minds of humans."

    How do you know this?

    Seriously, I am curious, how?

    It doesn't have to be a link. I would be more than happy to buy a book ( I buy lots of books) if it actually contained proof of what 'the vast majority' thinks on these matters.

    I must admit that I am skeptical of the whole idea of an individual knowing what 'the vast majority' thinks about ANYTHING. But I am always willing to read a new study with an innovative methodology.

    So please, tell me, how do you know this?

     

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    senshikaze (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:45am

    ACTA v. FLOSS

    My biggest concern about ACTA is how will it affect Free/Libre and Open Source software? Is it going to be even harder for me, a near full time Linux user, to listen to new music. I already can't(easily/legally) watch Blu-Ray video's on Linux because of the DMCA and anti-circumvention laws(that and pc blu-ray drives are damned expensive). Some of the copyright restrictions seem to be able to stifle or even prevent Open Source Software development.

    Whatever your feelings on FLOSS, even the loudest closed source software supporter should be able to see FLOSS's place in the software world.

     

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    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:49am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Once again your argument is self defeating.

    Either the number of people who reject copyright restrictions is small and the number who happily embrace them is large - in which case why go to the trouble and expense of making laws and treaties against copying

    OR

    the number who reject copyright is large and so the industry will need more laws to keep going - but those laws will be against the will of the people.

    You can't have your cake and eat it. (Oh, I forgot, your a "rightsholder" you've been having your cake and eating it for years now and this is all about keeping on doing it...)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 6:56am

    Re: We, the People.

    I'm very glad you don't represent me in this elective democracy! The fact is, most humans believe the exact opposite of everything you say here... there are tons and tons of examples to show this. Obviously I am right and you are wrong on this one.

    But just like you I offer no evidence in support of my opinion except some vague statements about how there are numerous examples, without citing even one. Luckily I've just convinced as many people as you how right I am :)

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:00am

    Re: We, the People

    Richard, we're all just going with our guts here, all I'm saying is any treaty that at base protects the validity of product in any format from unlawful infringing is not going to face important (by the numbers) opposition.

    Besides, 30,000 signatories in a country of what? 62 million? Let's say 30 million vote. That's .1%. of 30 million. Precisely my point.

     

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    Steven (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:02am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    I'm curious. If I buy a chair, take it home, build myself and exact copy, and give that copy to a friend, did I do something morally wrong?

    Is it wrong if I make two or ten?

     

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    The Anti-Mike (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:08am

    Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    Richard, I personally think the answer is both of those, which is why I think you are having a problem with it.

    The number of people who reject copyright restrictions outright appears to be fairly small. I am talking about people who would take a picket sign and protest about it.

    After them, there is a big soft middle, that goes anywhere from "almost ready to picket" to "just picking up free stuff while we can". These are the people who use torrents because they can, or would use an illegal satTV receiver because they think they can get away with it. If they didn't think they could get away with it, they wouldn't do it. They aren't morally for or against copyright, just for getting something for nothing, putting one over "on the man", as it were.

    After that, there is a big group of people who don't know, don't care, and actually pay for the stuff they want to listen to or watch.

    Finally, you have what people here would call copyright maximalists, those who would take up picket signs for copyright, would campaign for it, whatever.

    The problem isn't the extremes at either end, as a change of laws won't change their behavior. The real target of any legal action or law change is those people in the soft middle, who will do what they can get away with, as long as they don't feel they will get caught. It's a bit of the old mob mentality, where people do things they normally would not do because of the encouragement of the mob around them and the safety it brings, and it's a big of what is socially acceptable at a given time. Laws are written generally to encourage the majority of people to follow them.

    You can't have your cake and eat it. (Oh, I forgot, your a "rightsholder" you've been having your cake and eating it for years now and this is all about keeping on doing it...)

    As a consumer, you need to understand that the music you get for 99 cents a song is at a much lower rate than what it costs to produce it. When you are personally willing to pay $250,000 for a band to produce and distribute a new studio recording, you can decide what happens. Until then, you should consider that you are getting a great deal paying pennies to get access to the material.

    Do you think anyone would pay 300 million for a ticket to see Avatar? Nope. At $10 a ticket, it's a great deal, and can be done at that price in part because of copyright and all that it entails.

     

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  19.  
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    Jeff, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:09am

    Re: We, the People.

    Ironic that you start your trolling with that famous phrase. Perhaps you should read the rest of the document you quote - specifically Article 1 section 10.
    No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility. No State shall, without the Consent of the Congress, lay any Imposts or Duties on Imports or Exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing it's inspection Laws: and the net Produce of all Duties and Imposts, laid by any State on Imports or Exports, shall be for the Use of the Treasury of the United States; and all such Laws shall be subject to the Revision and Control of the Congress.
    By law, the U.S. Trade Representative is part of the executive branch being appointed by the President of the United States - not the congress. The USTR is responsible for developing and recommending United States Trade Policy to the President of the United States. Not enforcing it, not implementing it, not executing it. Yet, somehow, we have the USTR entering the entire United States into a treaty with foreign sovereign nations, and you seem to think it is OK for us the sheeple of the United States to not worry? Are you out of your mind? We the people are tired of our rights being abrogated by greedy corporations in direct contravention of the Constitution. The very law of this land is being perverted by corporate interests - and you want us to just bend over accept what our corporate overlords want to give us? In the name of all that's "fair"??? You sir are a corporate shill who would see all of our rights handed to our corporate masters for the "betterment" of their bottom line... FUCK YOU!

     

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    Steven (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:09am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Compared to all the grassroots petitions asking for stronger copyright laws?

     

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    R. Miles (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:12am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Creating proprietary products in digital format is just as valid as creating proprietary material product.
    The problem with your position, Sam, is that it's not the production that's in question, but the distribution of said product.

    ACTA is about protecting distribution, not creation. It's about controlling aspects of distribution to which consumers are treated as potential criminals, rather than supporting the creations through purchases.

    In all your rhetoric, you simply discount the changes to both Copyright law and the DMCA, the latter being specifically enacted because Copyright could not cover the issues distributors faced.

    I'll completely agree with your production rule of thumb, but certainly not the distribution side of it. If you're to take this down this road, then I should expect payment for everything I do years and years and years long after it was originally created.

    ACTA serves to introduce more of this by deliberately preventing the expansion of works outside channels to which puts them out of business. Literally. The internet has, indeed, replaced the need for physical goods on many products now available in digital format.

    Though, it boggles my mind why people like you position on the fact an infinite supply of said product should have a cost that far exceeds amounts even economics balks at.

    I'm quite confident infringement shouldn't be limited to "I wrote this song, code, book, or movie" to prevent others from doing the same thing. IP has fallen under such draconian rules and regulations that current content creators are now subjected to lawsuits banning their product from ever reaching the market.

    If you feel ACTA is about protecting the content, you're completely misguided as the DMCA should be more than sufficient to prove beyond all doubt that the regulation isn't about creation, but control.

    I'm fully aware it's difficult for many businesses to adapt a model around a digital good, but that's their problem. It never, ever, ever should be the problem of the consumer who purchased the product.

    ACTA will destroy this consumer protection just as the DMCA has destroyed it for people who upload dancing baby videos with barely audible licensed music in the background.

    Trying to convince the masses, or We The People, these changes are good for us is rather ignorant for you to do. Note my position will be completely against yours regardless how much you toot this horn.

    Your position is wrong and grossly inaccurate.

     

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    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:19am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    "Besides, 30,000 signatories in a country of what? 62 million? Let's say 30 million vote. That's .1%. of 30 million. Precisely my point."

    Wrong methodology the absolute number is not relevant. You have to factor in the takeup rate of petitions as a whole. 30000 is BIG relative to the other petitons on the site - its HUGE when you consider the relatively small amount of mainstream media coverage involved. By your logic only 0.075% of the population supported the right of the Gurkas to stay in Britain (~20000 signed the petition on that one) and yet the government backed down in an instant - because of.... public opinion.

    Of course one major reason the public doesn't care about ACTA is precisely the secrecy it is being done in the dark because it is evil and has to be hidden from the public.

    It may yet sail through because the public don't care - but they don't care mainly because they don't understand - and they don't understand mostly because they don't know.

    In my experience when people actually think about the issues they don't adopt your opinions they adopt the opinions of that so called "minority".

     

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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:29am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    Actually no, I don't think $10 for Avatar was a good deal.

    I paid 11 euros for my ticket. And I thought it was a rip off.
    Let's just forget about the 8 euro for popcorn and drinks.

    Sure, new technology and long movie and all that.
    But the experience for me didn't warrant the price tag.
    Mind you, I have a lazy eye, so I couldn't quite see it all in 3D (in fact, the movie gave me a blistering headache), but my friends wanted to see it in 3D.
    It's a decent film, but to me it wasn't worth 11 euros.

    (the regular 2D version was 'only' 9 euros)

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 7:38am

    Re: We, the People

    Richard, if the people "don't understand because they don't know", then we can all take a great pride and relief that the discussion of ideas available to us on this network, arguably the greatest communicative device in the history of man, gives "We, the People" every opportunity to learn and know, and eventually vote our consciences and our pocketbooks. In this case, if you are indeed correct, time and education is on your side and I respect that, but I don't believe it.

    I say the people will embrace the fundamentals of protecting the creation and distribution of all (including digital) products BECAUSE of commonly held principles, not in spite of them. And if you want to indicate .1% as evidence that your position has the true momentum, I read and respect that prophesy as well. I just don't buy into it.

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:04am

    Re: We, the People

    "Trying to convince the masses, or We The People, these changes are good for us is rather ignorant for you to do. "

    I've said no such thing, R.Miles and I'm certainly not "ignorant" of what is at stake here.

    But what I AM saying is the people will accept and embrace the principles of the ACTA because of widely held, common principle, with nary a ripple of opposition, despite the vocal minority, despite having an internet to gather and organize true opposition. You can create false impressions by putting words into my mouth to create an easy straw-man to dismantle, but that reflects more on you and your poor quality thinking than anything else.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:10am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    I say the people will embrace the fundamentals of protecting the creation and distribution of all (including digital) products BECAUSE of commonly held principles, not in spite of them.

    It's hard for a public to embrace the distribution of digital content when the 20th century distributors refuse to actually distribute their digital content in a 21st century way.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:12am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    Why is everyone talking about copyright? ACTA is 100% about counterfeiting. It's right there in the name of it. They wouldn't lie to me, would they?

    Would they?!?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:19am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    I heard ACTA was going to require the searching of laptops and iPods at the borders of the world, as they look for "illegal" music and movies. Is this true?

    Oh, right, nobody knows what's in the secret treaty, sorry, secret executive decision because of national security.

    I heard that if you're caught counterfeiting three times that they kick you off of the internet. Is this true?

     

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    Steven (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:22am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    I'm not sure what 'widely held, common priciple, with nary...' you are thinking supports the things that appear to be in (because we're just not privileged enough to know) ACTA.

    Due process? Nope, that's just to hard.

    Property rights? As long as you accept that (1) copyright has anything to do with real property (2) a copyright holder maintains permanent ownership all their copyright works (3) You the consumer are only allowed access to that which you 'purchase' under the continued discretion and oversight of the real owner (copyright holder).

    Sorry, just not seeing it.

     

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    NAMELESS.ONE, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:24am

    enter the beaucrats the real power of the republic

    dun dun duuun dunnn
    que up the star wars doom songs

     

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    Jeff (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:30am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    I'm so angry I've lost my ability to speak. This is my fourth attempt at trying to rebut your nonesense.


    The sheeple will accept and embrace the principles of ACTA precisely because they won't know what is being negotiated on their behalf. They don't care because they don't know. If they knew - THEN WE WOULD CARE. This is an amazingly one-sided, intentionally vague, gross distortion of the trade process. Consistent "There's nothing to see here, move along" comments from corporate interests only indicates the magnitude of the shady back-room deals taking place here. I DO NOT embrace ACTA, I will never embrace the steady destruction of my individual rights upon the corporate altar of profits. EVERYTHING about this trade agreement is in contravention of the democratic principles of all the potential signatories. The ONLY purpose of this agreement is to further shove ever more draconian IP protection laws down our throats - that benefit only those with the money, not the rest of us. Two months ago - I didn't know a damn thing about ACTA, USTR or US Trade Policy in general, but know that I'm educating myself, I'm becoming increasingly infuriated at the naked power grab taking place before my very eyes. I have joined the vocal "minority" because I am becoming educated. People with "widely held, common principle " would immediately realize this isn't right, nor is it fair.

     

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    Anony1, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:34am

    @Jeff: Your post is just "stinky troll bait" according to The Anti-Mike, so don't expect a response. I would also respectfully request that each and every member here reconsider even addressing TAM. BTW, this isn't because of some personal vendetta of mine. While I truely despise the disengenuous tactics, and fiegned ignorance and deception by TAM in his posts, the issue is larger. He refuses to engage people in discussion, based on his personal opinion, while outright ignoring legitimate questions. I didn't even bother to respond yesterday to his FALSE accusation that those people engaging him in conversation AND I QUOTE: " Don't actually disagree with him". He can spout off here all he wants, but you are truely just as foolish if you choose to address him directly, let alone attempt to engage him.

     

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    lavi d (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:36am

    Re: We, the People.

    You know that as well as anyone. And that's why the ACTA (and every refinement that comes after) will be at first regarded, then accepted and eventually warmly embraced.

    Yes, just like the drug laws are so warmly regarded by the relatives of people being kept in jail for 20 years for an ounce of marijuana or the grandmother shot to death by a SWAT team raiding the wrong address.

     

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    Steven (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:38am

    Almost

    Enter the bureaucrats...the true rulers of the Republic. And on the payroll of the [RIIA], I might add. This is where [President Obama's] strength [and transparency] will disappear.

     

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    Anony1, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:44am

    @Jeff: That's TAMs game, don't you get it by now? He comes here, and while he may have some talking points, etc., he also trolls. He provokes people into angry responses, and when thoughtful discussion is then attempted, he turns around accusing them of being trolls, in the hopes of silencing them, by tiring them out. It's actually a fairly effective strategy, but it is the basest of strategies as well. So your post about "This is my fourth attempt at trying to rebut your nonesense." WADR, is exactly what he wants. If he truely disagreed, AND was willing to engage in conversation, that would be one thing. He isn't. Apparently being appalled by his tactics, and insulting his sheer nerve makes you a "troll". Just food for thought.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:46am

    Re:

    I'm with this guy! Oh, looks like we're having a "converstaion" with myself. Does our mommy know that it's a school day?

     

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    lavi d (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:53am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    ...I also think this treaty will regard both digital goods AND physical goods with equal validity, and until a compelling reason why it should not gains more than minor grassroot support, "product is product" will out.

    Actually digital "goods" are quite different from physical products in that they can be duplicated at the touch of a switch.

    What you are essentially arguing is, when they become available, machines which can duplicate food and medicine at the "touch of a switch" should be tightly controlled or outlawed because of "unlawful duplication"

    You're going to lose on that one.

     

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    R. Miles (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:55am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Sorry, Sam, but based on your other replies on this site, I don't believe I've put any words in your mouth.

    For you to say people will embrace this is ignorant. People are starting to realize the implications the DMCA has introduced and by the time they figure this out, here comes ACTA with all its changes.

    This isn't the minority being vocal, but people who couldn't care less about this who find their works taken down due to illegal DMCA submissions.

    What's next, allowing furniture makers to claim copyright over a table design that's featured in a home video? Oh, wait. That was already done. The guy in question most certainly isn't embracing the DMCA, that's for sure.

    As for quality thinking, sorry, but I'll challenge this as well given I'm not looking this from the side "everything must be free", but instead, looking to understand why elements of a law out to protect content creators is being abused under questionable means.

    These very means which are now being used to kick people off the internet in other countries (and trying to get this "law" here in the United States as well).

    If I've misinterpreted your words, my apologies. But I don't think I have.

     

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    Anony1, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 8:58am

    by Anonymous Coward
    I'm with this guy! Oh, looks like we're having a "converstaion" with myself. Does our mommy know that it's a school day?


    Does your doctor know you've escaped and reached the computer?

     

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    lavi d (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:07am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    ... 99 cents a song is at a much lower rate than what it costs to produce it. When you are personally willing to pay $250,000 for a band to produce...

    This is a fundamental misconception. If you are paying $250k for something that can be copied for $0, you are doing something wrong.

    The government should not be in the business of ensuring that you recoup your bad investment.

    You need to figure out how to work with new technology, not insisting that the government cripple or restrict people's access to that technology.

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:12am

    Re:

    Just poking a mild amount of fun in TAM's direction.

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:22am

    Re: We, the People

    "If I've misinterpreted your words, my apologies. But I don't think I have."

    No apologies necessary, limitations of the medium. :-)

    I say the ACTA will sail through and sail on with a couple editorials in opposition, and then become a global standard enforced through other trade leverages, pre-existing agreements and so on, plain old business as usual.

    IP, digital product and the genius of digital distribution is too big, to inherent in our future, too profitable and too taxable for any other realistic outcome. I completely understand how certain utopianists would prefer a different outcome and I'm wide open to hearing why and how you think the passage of the ACTA will fail, in your view. I just don't believe it.

    Whether it's good or bad is a different issue. I just believe that We, the People are not going to contest it in meaningful numbers because it reconciles with the majority view, and eventually any pockets of residual resistance will become the focus of international law enforcement, just like any other treaty. And that, I think, is that.

    We'll see.

     

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    Sneeje (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:41am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Where's DH when we need him?

    After reading that last bit, I must admit I feel like I've been slimed. The subtext in this response is effectively--"I know you're sheep, you know you're sheep, so accept it. If I tell you its good and you'll agree with the principles, then that's that."

    Wow, just wow. I recently told TAM I could almost taste his arrogance, but the hubris here can be felt, smelled, heard, touched, seen, and even schmisioned.

    The sad part is that I unfortunately agree with you--it will be passed and part of our democracy will die.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:49am

    Re:

    You mean the SarcMark!

     

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    Emo the Libertarian (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:51am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    What kills me is you know nothing about what is in ACTA, but your beating your chest and saying how its the right thing at the right time.

    So how is it possible for you to know thats its good for the people???? Paid schill? USTR??? or your one of the koolaide drinkers that thinks everthing the government does is ok???? Which is it?

    Also, sorry, but anything that effects the public and has to be "Negotiated" out of the peoples eye, using backdoors, and the like can not be good at all for the people or you wouldn't worry about the voice of the people..

    And stop saying "We the People" you haven't spoken one word in support of the People...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:58am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    "Hey, they wrecked our internet!" says the people. And the people say, "Why don't we just make a new one."

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:00am

    Re: We, the People

    ""I know you're sheep, you know you're sheep, so accept it."

    No, no Sneeje, I'm not saying that at all. That would imply that the majority disagrees with the basic principles of the ACTA but for (whatever) other reasons, pose no meaningful opposition.

    To the contrary.

    I'm saying the fundamental common sense of treating all forms of unlawful duplication and distribution of copyrighted merchandise, digital or otherwise, will ring truer and be more wholly embraced than any belief that because illegal duplication and distribution CAN be done (in ANY format), it SHOULD be done.

    I'm acknowledging that a minority, especially here, will see this as an erosion of democracy, but I'm predicting that the overwhelming majority of others will view this level playing field of "product and distribution protection regardless of format" as a reasonable path forward that actually PROTECTS and EXTENDS democracy. And with education, comprehension and discussion, THAT will emerge as the consensus.

    That's a distinction with an important difference.

    "Sheeple" is condescending and pejorative. I'm saying the clear majority of the people will accept and embrace the ACTA on the actual merits.

     

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    Dark Helmet (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:00am

    Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    Here I come, to save the daaaaay! (To be read with Mighty Mouse sing-song)

    "I say the ACTA will sail through and sail on with a couple editorials in opposition, and then become a global standard enforced through other trade leverages, pre-existing agreements and so on, plain old business as usual."

    I agree, though I also believe one of two things will happen:

    1. After a brief shakeup period in which the more hellish aspects of ACTA are implemented, you WILL see massive political landscape reform in the form of an incredibly pissed of general public, similar to what young voters were trying to do in the Obama election.

    2. The actual utilization of ACTA will be so tempered as to render it toothless, similar to how few times we see copyright holders actually going after individuals. They can have all the ACTA they want, but they'd have to be stupid not to understand how utilizing it would sound their death bells.

    "IP, digital product and the genius of digital distribution is too big, to inherent in our future, too profitable and too taxable for any other realistic outcome."

    No, because the ability for an interested public to vote out the tards will always be more powerful than tax revenue. Two theoretical problems:

    1. The public isn't yet interested enough to pose a danger. Utilizing ACTA with a strong arm would/should change that.

    2. The people who actually pull the strings in both govt. and industry aren't elected.

    "I completely understand how certain utopianists would prefer a different outcome and I'm wide open to hearing why and how you think the passage of the ACTA will fail, in your view. I just don't believe it."

    Me neither, I just don't think it'll do what it's intended to do long term. You'll either see it being used in tempered fashion, or you'll see true, honest to goodness revolt. I'm praying for the latter.

    "I just believe that We, the People are not going to contest it in meaningful numbers because it reconciles with the majority view, and eventually any pockets of residual resistance will become the focus of international law enforcement, just like any other treaty."

    Here's why you're wrong. ACTA does NOT reconcile with the majority view when discussing details. However, the bullshit explanations we're getting DO reconcile with the majority view. Those two things are unlikely to be the same. And if they are heavy handed with ACTA, oh boy, I truly believe this is the stuff revolutions are made of....

     

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  49.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:10am

    Re: We, the People.

    'Even when a culture supports infringing, that culture is taught that it's wrong but makes a cultural "carve out" for that behavior.'

    Fixed that for you.

     

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  50.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:33am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    I'm saying the fundamental common sense of treating all forms of unlawful duplication and distribution of copyrighted merchandise, digital or otherwise, will ring truer and be more wholly embraced than any belief that because illegal duplication and distribution CAN be done (in ANY format), it SHOULD be done.

    I find little in what you write above "common sense." In fact, if you look at any situation in which technology allows for more efficient distribution and duplication of product, you will see a long history of folks like yourself, folks who relied on the older, more limited tools, who claim that the new tools are inherently evil and "common sense will prevail." And, barring that, you'll smash up the machines.

    And yet, real common sense does prevail. The common sense that recognizes that anything that makes an overall process cheaper and more efficient (and that includes for duplication and distribution) will be embraced. And those who snidely dismissed the technology and insisted that the world would rise up against it are properly branded as fools and Luddites.

    What you think of as common sense isn't so common in the face of basic economics and an understanding of more efficient processes.

     

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    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:34am

    ACTA wont change anything ....

    There is software being developed to response to ACTA. It is in response to the secrecy of ACTA, what has leaked about ACTA, and the fear of ISP's doing surveillance. I have seen a demo version of Linux that vitualizes websites, DNS, UseNet, and routing. It also has a very efficient and fast version of onion routing, caching, distributed file system, allows for ecrypted closed groups for sharing of files, e-mail and attatchment encryption de-encryption through any pop server (saw a gmail and yahoo demo) and virtualized. It basically removes all the centralized services of the internet and takes them to a meta level.

    Pretty neat stuff in my book, I am sure I am missing a whole hell of a alot of this linux distros capabilities. The windows version is at about the same level. It will also run off a data stick.

    The future looks even more bleak for the media groups when this software is actually opened up for public use.

     

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    Sneeje (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Well, as usual DH hit it on the head. And that's where we fundamentally disagree and may never reconcile.

    People (even those here) will agree with the principles. I am certainly against unlawful copying and distribution. The problem lies with what that means--I think the government and business should embrace far less draconian limits on sharing and distribution.

    And everyone, counties, businesses, and individuals will be better for it. For example, the more news and information that goes behind paywalls may decrease the average person's exposure to different perspectives and sources of information. That's bad and that's a hindrance to democracy.

    I also don't believe that less restrictions will harm markets for content. Markets and technology change--friction won't help them.

     

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  53.  
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    Derek Bredensteiner (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:40am

    Mostly / Exclusively

    “misperception that this agreement will focus mostly or exclusively on copyright infringement in the digital environment”.

    It doesn't matter if it's mostly / exclusively or a paragraph shoved in the middle somewhere. Who cares if the focus is elsewhere? That's what they're denying, the focus? This is the most damning response yet. "Well, I'm not going to say the copyright stuff isn't in there, but we're not really focusing on that, so don't worry about it".

    Seriously?

     

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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:53am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    You have yet to respond to anyone with any proof that the majority feels this way other than "I believe".
    Infinite goods != finite goods. Until you learn the difference, you just sound stupid and shall not be taken seriously.

     

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  55.  
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    Simon, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:53am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    If it's so natural and obvious, why do the proposals need to be kept a secret? Why do the people that wish to keep it a secret also need to be kept secret?

     

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    R. Miles (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:57am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    "...and I'm wide open to hearing why and how you think the passage of the ACTA will fail, in your view."
    Just to note, I'm not in any disagreement this would pass into law here in the United States.

    What I'm saying is that despite the passing, people will not simply embrace it. They're smarter than that when it finally shows its ugly face.

    While TD shows all the issues of improper uses of the DMCA, there are many more stories out there of people fighting such use.

    That doesn't sound like "embracing" to me. ;)

    I'll admit I'm speculating on what ACTA contains, but I'm going from the DMCA, which took massive abusive until such protections were added by those who felt it was unjust as it was originally written.

    Bear that in mind while thinking people will embrace it. Hell, most people probably never heard of ACTA.

    Maybe we can get Glen Beck to speak about it, though given he used the DMCA against a parody site, probably not in our best interest to have him discuss the issues as clearly, he'll be in favor of locking down content, especially if one is to use the name "Glen Beck".

     

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    Free Capitalist (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 11:13am

    Re: Re: We, the People

    "I'm predicting that the overwhelming majority of others will view this level playing field of "product and distribution protection regardless of format" as a reasonable path forward that actually PROTECTS and EXTENDS democracy"


    You've sort of jumped off the "sanity boat" on that one, correlating 'copyright protectionism in the digital age' and democracy.

    Also, the "we believe anything you tell us" support you seem to be counting on from the masses in all your posts is normally only dependable in healthy economic environments. The entertainment execs peeing their pants to get ACTA through so they can "cope" with the current economic situation would do well to consider that over 10% of the working families who normally have no time to care now suddenly have all the time in the world to read, and to comprehend, and to write their congresspersons.

     

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    MCR, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 11:26am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    There's one little issue with your "big soft middle". According to your post, these are the people who infringe because they can, but wouldn't if it was unavailable or their were dire consequences involved. I completely and totally agree.

    However, the majority of this soft middle are also the people who wouldn't pay for the content under any circumstances. If it wasn't available for free, they'd go without. Therefore, their infringement has exactly $0 impact on the content they're obtaining.

    Why pass all these laws if the vast majority of infringers (the one's they want kicked off the internet) have zero impact?

     

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    Sam I Am, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 11:48am

    Re: We, the People

    There’s not much you’ve written I disagree with in principle, Mike, but your premise that business will always favor efficiency is a false premise and so your assertions might fail going forward. This is not a case of technical efficiency in a vacuum, nor is the human being as streamlined or as rational as your proposed thinking. If pure efficiency were the only criteria, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion, no? And there’d be no case for the ACTA at all. We’d just let digital product go and let the chips fall wherever they may, let all forms of digital industry fail (or not) and rebuild to a large degree from the ground up, ignoring law and previous investment, whatever the effects to jobs and taxation, whether it feels fair to most or not, regardless of legal consequence or remedy.

    But that’s not how things work and I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to predict that’s not gonna happen anytime soon. It’s far more complicated than that. In fact, there’s a balance to be achieved here: employment, taxation, encouraging initiative, our collective sense of “fair”, intrinsic beliefs of compensation-for-value taken, the ripple effect to other industries and businesses. I’m not saying any or all of this is right or wrong, but I’m saying it IS, it exists, and has far more collective influence than the singular influence of efficient technology.

    For every hydraulic excavator digging a huge foundation, there’s some guy somewhere building a case for a hundred men with shovels. And once that hundred men with shovels is achieved, he then lobbies for a thousand men with teaspoons, knowing he’ll never actually get it but shrewdly understanding it buttresses his position for the shovels. THAT’s how business REALLY works, Mike. It’s a push pull in which technology is only one player.

    Human nature is a large part of this, too, and rarely does human nature favor pure efficiency. I’m blessed with a large extended Swedish family through marriage, and their principles illustrate this well.

    In theory they are ALL ABOUT the equitable distribution of wealth right up to the point where that cultural belief begins to take half of THEIR hard-earned salary, and then suddenly they seek the same tax shelters and havens that all smart business people do. Hypocritical? No. Human. And I credit them for trying.

    It’s part of human nature to defend and protect everyone’s chances in the marketplace, too, so that OUR ideas may be protected and leveraged for profit within the system in place when OUR turn comes. This is not Luddite thinking, Mike, this is collective human nature and it will readily ignore technical efficiency to maintain familiar status quo and the holy grail of a personal chance at the wheel of fortune. Not only do many hope to write “the great novel” someday, but most still intend to SELL it.

    Some will embrace selling clothes from their closets insisting they be viewed as musicians. Others will make music and seek government protection for their products. Push pull. What I’m trying to express today is that from what we’ve been able to see so far, when the provisions of the ACTA are released and begun to be enforced, we will not experience a meaningful revolt because business conventions and good old human nature will identify with these provisions. Equitable rules of creation and distribution for products in all formats will feel familiar and sensible even if technically it is not. And so the lack of resistance to these principles will ultimately trump pure technical efficiency for years and years to come. Unfortunately, but inevitably, law enforcement will become part of this because some will always equate free speech with free beer. Nothing new here, this was ever so.

    But just existing job preservation, the simple flow of tax revenue and the sheer existence of government depends on maintaining all of this. A time when pure tech wins will come, but change comes more slowly than that and the provisions of the ACTA will prove more sensible to humankind, more manageable to government and more profitable to existing industry than simply throwing the deck up into the air and letting digital chaos reign. And that, bottom line, is why it won’t.

     

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    Sneeje (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:22pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Until someone shows us the details, however, it sounds just like snake-oil to me.

     

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  61.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:27pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Well stated points. Yes, economics is an important factor in the calculus underlying this matter, but then again it is not, as you point out, the only factor. It is one of many. For example, social mores play an important role.

     

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    Chargone (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:28pm

    Re: We, the People.

    not having read the other responses to this comment:

    it's not a freaking elective democracy (and i think you mean 'representative democracy' anyway)

    It's a bureaucratic republic. it uses democratic processes purely to avoid (or at least reduce and keep non-violent) the inevitable infighting over who gets what job that would result otherwise.

    the people really have little say, all up. they're certainly not In Charge. (and were never meant to be)

     

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  63.  
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    Derek Bredensteiner (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:32pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    So ACTA is the law that forces us to use a thousand men with teaspoons to dig our foundations and we should shutup about it because that's just how it is and those thousand guys need a job?

    Sam, let me tell you how it is. Fuck all. There isn't any how it is except what we make of it. Technological change has already happened, and the rules of the game have changed along with it. This insane obsession with backpedaling isn't doing anyone any good. I have no illusions about stopping people from eating shit, but I'm sure as hell going to tell them that's shit they're eating over there.

    But don't be confused, the message here is not one of despair. The message here is stop eating shit and look at all these wonderful new possibilities. Change is inevitable. It may be scary and frightening when it's no longer possible to make money this one way that's worked for a few years, but that's no reason to ignore the multitude of new opportunities that abound.

    I'll agree with you that efficiency is not the only factor at play, clearly, as we are where we are today. But why would that then lead you to argue for the destruction of efficiency for the sake of preserving a status quo? Are you so entrenched in that status quo that you see no way out for yourself? Why should we take steps backwards because it's more palatable to a minority?

    To be clear here, I see ACTA (specifically any provisions that seek to punish the accused or place a burden on an service provider for their users actions) as a very large step backwards and one that deserves more attention than it's already getting.

     

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  64.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:33pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    There’s not much you’ve written I disagree with in principle, Mike, but your premise that business will always favor efficiency is a false premise and so your assertions might fail going forward.

    Not business, the market.

    This is not a case of technical efficiency in a vacuum, nor is the human being as streamlined or as rational as your proposed thinking. If pure efficiency were the only criteria, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion, no? And there’d be no case for the ACTA at all. We’d just let digital product go and let the chips fall wherever they may, let all forms of digital industry fail (or not) and rebuild to a large degree from the ground up, ignoring law and previous investment, whatever the effects to jobs and taxation, whether it feels fair to most or not, regardless of legal consequence or remedy.

    Huh? Of course entrenched interests that will be disintermediated by more efficient markets will propose bogus laws to prevent it. Doesn't mean they'll work. We've got a long history of this. Remember when horse carraige makers got laws passed that required automobiles to have someone walk in front of them waving two red flags. That was all about "safety," which your version of "common sense" would think was reasonable. But it didn't last very long.

    But that’s not how things work and I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to predict that’s not gonna happen anytime soon. It’s far more complicated than that. In fact, there’s a balance to be achieved here: employment, taxation, encouraging initiative, our collective sense of “fair”, intrinsic beliefs of compensation-for-value taken, the ripple effect to other industries and businesses. I’m not saying any or all of this is right or wrong, but I’m saying it IS, it exists, and has far more collective influence than the singular influence of efficient technology.

    Well, on that we disagree and history is on my side. I also am not saying anything is right or wrong, but we can look at history and see that attempts to legislative hold back what technology allows will fail. Always.

    And, I think you are totally underestimating/confusing what people really think about these issues.

    For every hydraulic excavator digging a huge foundation, there’s some guy somewhere building a case for a hundred men with shovels. And once that hundred men with shovels is achieved, he then lobbies for a thousand men with teaspoons, knowing he’ll never actually get it but shrewdly understanding it buttresses his position for the shovels. THAT’s how business REALLY works, Mike. It’s a push pull in which technology is only one player.


    Yes, we agree. But look at history. How long do those things work? Not long.

    In theory they are ALL ABOUT the equitable distribution of wealth right up to the point where that cultural belief begins to take half of THEIR hard-earned salary, and then suddenly they seek the same tax shelters and havens that all smart business people do. Hypocritical? No. Human. And I credit them for trying.

    Non sequitur statement is non sequitur.

    This is not Luddite thinking, Mike, this is collective human nature and it will readily ignore technical efficiency to maintain familiar status quo and the holy grail of a personal chance at the wheel of fortune. Not only do many hope to write “the great novel” someday, but most still intend to SELL it.

    Again, can you please cite a single example where the Luddites win?

    Thanks.

    I'm not sure what the novel example means. Of course people want to write and sell the great american novel. That's got nothing to do with ACTA.

    What I’m trying to express today is that from what we’ve been able to see so far, when the provisions of the ACTA are released and begun to be enforced, we will not experience a meaningful revolt because business conventions and good old human nature will identify with these provisions.

    Ok. If you think so, but all evidence points the other way. Consumers (you know, the ones who make the market go) clearly do *not* identify with these provisions. Otherwise we wouldn't be hearing about them.

    Equitable rules of creation and distribution for products in all formats will feel familiar and sensible even if technically it is not.

    You are assuming the masses are idiots. I am assuming they're smarter than that. It's not "equitable rules of creation and distribution" you are talking about at all. What ACTA seeks is to impose inequitable rules, that give excess power to rent seeking middlemen. Most people -- contrary to your claims -- intrinsically recognize the ridiculousness of this.

    But just existing job preservation, the simple flow of tax revenue and the sheer existence of government depends on maintaining all of this.

    Huh? This makes no sense. A more efficient economy generates greater jobs and tax revenue.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    Simon, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:36pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    Let's grossly simplify (given that we don't know the truth) and say that for Copyright, ACTA is DMCA for the rest of the world.

    Do you really believe the average person feels the DMCA is appropriate? That they shouldn't be able to purchase and use products like RealDVD? That the Takedown notice procedure is ethical? That the anti-circumvention laws applied to products and media a person has paid good money for is fair?

     

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  66.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:41pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    "Here I come, to save the daaaaay! (To be read with Mighty Mouse sing-song)"

    Funny thing thats exactly the tune that went through my head before I read the mighty mouse part...

    "They can have all the ACTA they want, but they'd have to be stupid not to understand how utilizing it would sound their death bells."

    Since when have they ever done anything that even approaches smart. They wield any tool at their disposal like a war hammer in an attempt to intimidate people into doing what they want. The 30k lawsuits, and multi million dollar judgement come to mind. Expect the tools they are given to be used. Then sit back and watch the public and corporate backlash.

    Think of the media distro types as afriad, manic, paniced, fearful of loss, and rationalizing everything. Its one of the reasons I hope ACTA stays secret. You place a bunch of people like that in a room, dont put any limits on what they can do, they always go overboard. Its human nature.

    " I just don't think it'll do what it's intended to do long term."

    On this we agree. Expect it not to work in the short term either. Expect what happened in Sweden after IPRED. There was a 30%+ drop in network utilazation followed by a slow rise to higher network utilization levels over the next couple months. The same thing has happened in South Korea as encryption and VPN usage went through the roof.

    "and eventually any pockets of residual resistance will become the focus of international law enforcement"

    I do have to say "Sam I Am"'s comments made me laugh to the point of tears. I had this image in my head of three police officers mumbling "residual resistance my ass" while trying to arrest all the people in MSG.

     

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  67.  
    identicon
    :), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 12:55pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    I say the people will embrace the fundamentals of protecting the creation and distribution of all (including digital) products BECAUSE of commonly held principles, not in spite of them. And if you want to indicate .1% as evidence that your position has the true momentum, I read and respect that prophesy as well. I just don't buy into it.


    Well if the majority would embrace that why are we even having this discussion?

    If the majority would embrace that, the majority would not engage in acts that contradicted that line of reasoning?

    People who embrace ideas do go against them or do they now?

    If the majority was to accept and embrace you would see everyone in the streets giving the stink eye to others who do it, but that not happen what you see on the street is people badmouthing those who try and enforce those laws.

    Why the music industry had to stop the most gigantic failure in history to "educate" the people?

    Because their revenues dropped faster than a meteor.

    Why people want to do negotiate in secret and exclude every representative from the majority of society?

    Because it is not embraced, it is not accepted.

    You think people will accept that, well take Michael Jackson in Russia. It was forbidden and still when the doors opened every russian new his lyrics by heart and people could die over there if they were caught listening to it. I see how people embraced it.

    Not even in asiatic countries were the people is very, very respectuful they embrace that idea, they tell openly to each other to just copy.

    End there is the BRIC that was purposely left out of those negotiations, because it was against their interests and would harm them so there is no "majority" if there was those sneaky dubious tactics would never need to be deployed.

     

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  68.  
    identicon
    :), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 1:12pm

    Re: ACTA wont change anything ....

    I like onions but I would much prefer people using DC-NETs.

    OSIRIS Serverless Portal FTY LoL

     

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  69.  
    identicon
    :), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 1:45pm

    Embrace and the kiss of death.

    Some are under the impression that the corrupt nature of some are equitable to the corrupt nature of many.

    It is not, it is not even a fight, will be a massacre.

    Those laws are not for the benefit of creators or inventors for that matter all those laws somehow end up in the hands of dream property hoarders who are neither innovators nor creators and people know it, they may not know how to express or be able to put their fingers on it but they know it, they know something is wrong and a very real proof of that is the explosion of alternatives in recent years.

    There is empirical data that shows how people oppose IP laws, the opposition is so hard that they had to stop doing enforcement and are desperate to use proxies(ISP's, governments etc), even they told public that ACTA if it was open would have governments drop out that is clearly not an embrace from the public is it now?

     

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  70.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 1:46pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    Because we have to tame this here wild internet from the savages by forcing people to connect to the network via thumbscan and virtual identification.

    No anonymity allowed! That's what ACTA stands for, the Anti-Anonymous Trade Agreement.

     

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  71.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 1:46pm

    Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    "What ACTA seeks is to impose inequitable rules..."

    What rules, on who, and where?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  72.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 1:55pm

    Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    How about in Canada? A levy is paid on some blank media to the Canadian arm of the recording industry and they still want to have the ability to kick people off of the internet or have a "notice and notice" or a "notice and takedown" approach to copyright.

    How is that fair? The Canadian public pays a tax to legally download some intellectual property only to have others state, "All instances of copyright infringement are theft."

    It's a complex situation in most countries and yet a treaty will fix all of it. A secret treaty that China and India are not involved in. Sorry, a secret Executive Decision.

    That's fair.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  73.  
    icon
    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 2:04pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    I personally think the answer is both of those, which is why I think you are having a problem with it.

    OK Both of those - so it is true that
    " The number of people who reject copyright restrictions is small and the number who happily embrace them is large - in which case why go to the trouble and expense of making laws and treaties against copying"

    AND
    "The number who reject copyright is large and so the industry will need more laws to keep going - but those laws will be against the will of the people."

    So I am right twice!

    I think you meant "neither" .

    Seriously though what you are actually suggesting is that there is a group of people that:

    1) Currently copies stuff without authorisation.

    2) Is a large enough group that it really matters to the industry financially.

    3) Believes that what they are doing is wrong.

    4) Doesn't have any real philosophical objection to copyright.

    5) Is politically apathetic and won't complain when ACTA is implemented.

    First of all I've never even met one of these people who ticked all the boxes.

    Second There are some who seem to fall into several of the categories - but strangely when you discuss the issues with them they tend to gravitate towards a typical techdirt reader attitude.

    Third its evident that you (and Sam) have a REALLY low opinion of the public - quite insulting in facct.

     

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  74.  
    identicon
    :), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 2:15pm

    Sneaky Laws.

    I don't understand why some dumb people are under the impression that if they pass a law it will be respected and successfully enforced.

    Nowhere in history there is such a thing. Always laws are passed and people don't mind them until the point it is enforced then you see how really people feel about and it may be to late to even backpaddle because the "anger" have been growing, governments fail to measure the "anger" and so do business people.

    If people where to embrace such ridiculous notions why is not the industry suing people and making big statements to the news?

    Because there is a line, one not written into law and not talked about, but it is there and that is the end of the rope for IP laws and the people trying to get more "leverage" know it too, but are so desperate that they are trying the backdoor deals approach now, and that will backfire the moment enforcement comes into play and people start to feel the pressure, people actually don't mind laws it is distant, it is not part of their daily lifes for the most part, but once it start to affect their lifes right there and then you will see something different, something that happens in extraordinary instances only and that is defiance, massive defiance and every joe and mary will explain it differently and use different reasons but they all will find a way to justify it.

    Force it even further and people may not get guns today but they will find alternatives and when those people try to block those alternatives there and then some heads will roll.

     

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  75.  
    icon
    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 2:31pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    IP is not only a huge backbone of international trade and taxation, it is surely going to grow larger with time. Creating proprietary products in digital format is just as valid as creating proprietary material product. It's not realistic to imagine that industry just walks away from 50 years of digital product development and government just throws in the towel on the tax revenue it creates.

    So called "intellectual property" (IP) is more accurately described as "Intellectual Monopoly Concessions" (IMC).

    Actually formal IMC laws are like the flanges on railway wheels. Naive people think that they are keeping the train on the track - but actually 99.99% of the time they do nothing. The wheel profile does the job - and in the few cases where it fails the flange acts as a fallback. When it does this there is aloud noise and the train suddenly becomes much less efficient.

    Its the same with IMC - so long as the technology and the marketplace (=the wheel profile) matches the laws the laws don't need to be applied and things work smoothly. If you have to use the laws much then you are already lost. The worst thing you can do is to introduce new laws that you are actually going to need to use.

    I think the reason INCs are so prominent today relates to investment.

    It is much easier (but lazier) to invest based on a the value of a monopoly than something that seems more nebulous like goodwill in the marketplace or a track record of previous innovation.

    However we have to wean ourselves off this lazy attitude and start paying attention to real value.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  76.  
    identicon
    :), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 2:55pm

    History and its importance.

    Historical data is important and the reasons why I will leave to TED speakers who did a great job telling why it is so important(even though some uses scare me).

    TED: Jamie Heywood - The Big Idea My Brother Inspired

    This is a nice talk about how people telling their own histories and organizing that data can be usefull to detect trends and even predict the future.

    TED: Bill Davenhall - Your Health Depends on Where You Live

    Geo-Medicine, is about the history on the enviroment that you live an tries to measure and quantify the risk that you are exposed to and the consequences and that is by doing a history.

    TED: Derek Sivers - Weird or Just Different?

    Culture influences how we see the world, in China there are medics that believe it is their work to keep you healthy and you paid them when you are and don't pay them when you get sick, they get rich if you are well. Interesting concept and is rooted on the history of the people there.

    Now Jamie had a great idea, I can see people using a similiar approach to a website that uses people experiences about the politics and laws they experience and what impact that had on their lifes, I could see a similar one tracking every politician and in what laws he voted and in what direction it actually points too independent of what that person say in public.

    ps: TED is a channel you can choose to watch on Miro, and I was amused to find Hulu channels in there today.

     

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  77.  
    identicon
    :), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 3:05pm

    The Last Mile problem.

    IP reached the last mile problem, they want to impose it on the general public and be able to enforced it, but this is not an easy task it will need massive changes not only in law but in how people live and to make people accept less and a lot of inconveniences to make some happy, good luck with that. If anyone thinks the nature of business is stronger than the nature of all society they are in for a surprise.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  78.  
    icon
    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 3:06pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    "I'm saying the clear majority of the people will accept and embrace the ACTA on the actual merits."

    Really? I've met very few.

    I'm sure I heard politicians saying something very similar about the so called "community charge" in the UK -

    Let me remind you what happened next:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Community_Charge

     

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  79.  
    identicon
    :), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 3:09pm

    The Embrace of the People.

    I have been noting a very strange thing latelly on forums everywhere.

    I like science so I go to a bunch of them and incredible the same positions taken here in the comments are taken elsewhere, there is rarely a forum where people have different points of view.

    These is a minority that frequent CNN, NOVA science, Nature Science, Ars, Endgadget, DSLReports and even some coocking sites, wow!

    That minority is following me everywhere I go or the perception of the people is very different from what some may assume.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  80.  
    icon
    Richard (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 3:42pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    "When you are personally willing to pay $250,000 for a band to produce and distribute a new studio recording, you can decide what happens. Until then, you should consider that you are getting a great deal paying pennies to get access to the material."

    I don't believe your $250000 price tag.

    Let's work it out

    First the recording studio

    http://www.beehouse.co.uk/prices.htm#studiotime

    So I can get a studio+engineer for £200 for a day.

    Let's have two days and treble the cost for a better studio so £1200.

    Now let's hire the band at reasonable professional rates.

    One of my favourite bands will do you a concert from about £1000 a go so we'll multiply that by ten to hire them for a full 2 days.

    Now - if they play old out of copyright music we can have the recording for less than £12000. I guess you're going to ask for an original song so I'll hire a songwriter for a full month to come up with something. You're probably going to say I'm a cheapskate so I'll pay the British Prime Minister's salary for that month. That will add around £17000 to the price - but it's still less than £30000 total =

     

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  81.  
    identicon
    Another AC, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 5:13pm

    Re: Re: We, the People

    "Sheeple" may be condescending and pejorative, but you are, as far as I can see in your posts, incredibly naive and out of touch. To believe that people will just openly embrace this? Well, that's the type we call 'sheeple.' Just do what you're told, the government has your best interests in mind, and, oh, let us put this GPS tracker in your hand. When it starts flashing red, report to the nearest euthanasia clinic.

    Be well, Citizen.

     

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  82.  
    icon
    Marcel de Jong (profile), Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 5:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    IKEA will sue you for copyright infringement. :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  83.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 5:37pm

    Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    Pick up that can, citizen.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  84.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 9:58pm

    Re: We, the People.

    The fact that many citizens in the past have been coerced into accepting tyrant governments that do not act in their best interest, including ones that murder their citizens for no good reason, does not mean that people approve of such behavior or governments. History is plagued with tyrant governments that are imposed on the oppressed against their will, just because they accept it (by force) does not mean they approve.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  85.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:05pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    Stricter intellectual property laws, on the general public, everywhere.

    We can't go into detail because it's secretive but I am going to reasonably assume it's being kept secret because the above is true and the laws it's creating are inequitable.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  86.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2010 @ 10:27pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    and one reason why such is a reasonable assumption is because the IP laws already in place are clearly not in the public interest, so why should I now assume that the government is suddenly acting in our best interest when they historically have not been?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  87.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 4th, 2010 @ 7:14am

    Re: Re: Re: We, the People

    "who claim that the new tools are inherently evil and "common sense will prevail." And, barring that, you'll smash up the machines."

    Wow !!! They are the Luddites of the information age !!! Trying to smash the looms to prevent themselves from being without work and changing their entire way of life.

    Mike thanks for the insight, I never saw it that way before. Looking at them in that light they seem really pathetic and lost.

     

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  88.  
    identicon
    Circumvent, Mar 1st, 2012 @ 6:49am

    It's a privilege to read these comments, but IP is a quaqmire.

    I can empathize with both sides and take Richards comments on what it costs to produce music.

    For a professional recording environment, you do need an investment http://www.recordingstudiolondon.co.uk/book_online.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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