USTR Continues To Lie: Claims ACTA Release Proved Internet Rumors About ACTA Were False

from the lies,-damned-lies,-and-sticking-up-for-lobbyists dept

This is pretty funny. After working really hard to keep ACTA negotiations a secret (even ridiculously claiming it was a national security issue), the USTR finally was pressured into release the draft text which showed, in fact, that the online leaks were exactly correct. Yet, the USTR is sticking to its earlier talking point that all the concern about ACTA in the online community was due to "misrepresentation" and "misinformation."

USTR boss Ron Kirk, at a World Intellectual Property Day event earlier this week, claimed that the official release of ACTA text had shown that there was "a lot of the misinformation about ACTA." Except, no, that's not true. While there had been some misinformation about it last summer (mainly due to Kirk's own actions in keeping the document secret), the leaks that started coming out late last year appear to have been 100% accurate. In fact, the significant changes to the officially released copy appear to have been driven by concerns brought forth due to these leaks. He went on to say that it's too early to "judge" things:
"We're still in the middle of the process," Kirk said, adding that "let's not prejudge anything." He also said his office has "gone to great lengths to hear" from all the stakeholders involved in the ACTA debate and will continue to do so.
But that's wrong on a variety of fronts. While the USTR had shown some snippets of the documents, under NDA and only for very brief periods of time, to consumer advocacy groups, that was significantly less access than many industry lobbyists had to the document and the negotiations. As for "pre-judging" the document, the issue isn't "pre-judging" the document, it's about actually listening to the stakeholders. To date, Kirk and the USTR has shown no interest in doing so. That's why they seem to only be publicizing letters from industry lobbyists who support ACTA, but not the concerns of pretty much everyone else about ACTA.

The issue isn't "pre-judging," it's making sure that by the time anyone's allowed to "judge" the document, it isn't too late.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 5:02pm

    ACTA was never kept secret, the USTR was being transparent all along. At least according to them.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 5:03pm

    "He also said his office has "gone to great lengths to hear" from all the stakeholders involved in the ACTA debate and will continue to do so. "

    and the lies continue.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      Allen (profile), Apr 27th, 2010 @ 6:17pm

      Re:

      No, no, no, they have gone to great lengths to hear, they just haven't been listening...

       

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 28th, 2010 @ 5:59am

      Re:

      IMHO, the problem is that they only consider industry lobbyists to be stakeholders. And I think it's an honest mistake on their part... they don't see how this may affect others. Or stated correctly, they see how this affects others (or else they would not have kept it secret), but they don't think the opinion of others is important because it's not their industry that's "dying".

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 5:07pm

    "let's not prejudge anything."

    Yes, because only your judgments matter and no one else should be allowed to judge it until you give the OK. Hence you decided to keep the documents secret until it's too late or until it leaked against your will.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      Derek Kerton (profile), Apr 28th, 2010 @ 2:03pm

      Re:

      Yeah. We're not pre-judging the final version...we're post-judging the draft.

      Verdict: A biased, over-reaching, one-sided debacle that will adversely affect citizens rights, right to free thought, and will unduly influence domestic laws in a number of countries without due legislative process.

      Kirk's logic could be applied to murderers: We shouldn't throw them in jail, because that is pre-judging them on a "draft version" of their lives. We need to let them finish their lives unfettered, then judge them once final.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 5:12pm

    They need a good kicking up the arse.

    And I mean a coordinated attack from all the last bastions of free speech and privacy, who should come together and fight against this sodden shite before they manage to push it through like they did with the Digital Economy Act here in the UK.

     

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

    •  
      icon
      Hephaestus (profile), Apr 27th, 2010 @ 5:57pm

      Re:

      "before they manage to push it through like they did with the Digital Economy Act here in the UK."

      In the long run the digital economy bill will cause several things, more privacy due to encryption becoming SOP, secure anon software to replace torrents and P2P, the accelerated collapse of the media companies, the eventual reform of IP law to something more queen anne-ish and consumer friendly, a corporate backlash against the media distribution industry.

      In the short run it will mean raids, imprisonment, fines, secondary liability, guilt by accusation.

       

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 5:20pm

    Why are you surprised? In the end, it stands to benefit the US Trial Lawyers association, which is a very active political influence in the previous election. The driving force behind it is the same as "too big to fail", only it's "too inept to woo the market".

    Even if the product is shit, the grandiose expectation to make mountains of money shouldn't be be lowered, right?

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    gee, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 6:34pm

    keep doing what youre doing

    mike if it wasnt for you and people like you, this sort of thing would just be rammed down our throats with no discussion at all - keep it up man!

     

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

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 7:54pm

      Re: keep doing what youre doing

      instead its rammed down your throats with discussion. worse it isnt even rammed down your throats, it is negotiated by the people you elected. if you dont like it unelect them.

       

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 8:08pm

        Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

        How is ACTA being negotiated by elected officials? When and where did I vote for the ACTA negotiators?

         

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

        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 9:14pm

          Re: Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

          if you are in the us, you people elected obama, a hundred or so senators, and a scad of house members. treaty negotiators work for the government. you know that, dont you mike?

           

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

          •  
            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 11:12pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

            Your paranoia is boring.

             

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

          •  
            identicon
            Any Mouse, Apr 28th, 2010 @ 12:15am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

            Treaty negotiators are not elected, they are appointed. Granted, we elected the assholes who appointed them, but this is not being negotiated by elected officials. At least troll intelligently.

             

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

        •  
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, Apr 28th, 2010 @ 6:22am

          Re: Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

          ACTA is not being negotiated by elected officials. It is being negotiated by officials appointed by the President.

           

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

      •  
        identicon
        abc gum, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 8:11pm

        Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

        Let's not let facts get in the way of BS /s

         

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

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 8:22pm

        Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

        I didn't know I elected industry lobbyists.

         

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

      •  
        icon
        John Fenderson (profile), Apr 29th, 2010 @ 8:30am

        Re: Re: keep doing what youre doing

        That's true, or at least it's negotiated by people appointed by them. However, once someone is elected to office they are placed under huge pressure from various powerful lobbies. It takes a rare breed with steel spines to withstand that, and even if you do it becomes almost impossible for you to accomplish anything from your own agenda. You have to play the game or be irrelevant. Corruption is built into the system.

        So, although voting is critically important, it alone is far from sufficient. We need to balance the powerful lobbies, and apply equally serious pressure in the direction we prefer.

        People who are angry at their lack of representation in government are absolutely right in their anger. That anger is also part of how the system works, as it's usually through anger that citizens unite enough to present a powerful counterpressure.

        Complacency is the death of our form of government. It warms my heart to hear people realizing their powerlessness and in so doing, discover their power.

         

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

  •  
    identicon
    vastrightwing, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 8:11pm

    The Emperor's New Clothes

    Didn't I read this sotry as a child?

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Executive Presidential orders ARE NOT democratic, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 8:13pm

    @9

    elected ?
    you want to show me a list of the mpaa , riaa, bsa and people that GAVE me the right o vote on such legislation and ill SHOW you how hes bypassing congress with it being an executive order cause OBAMA is to fraidy cat to have the PEOPLE have a say , even there so called elected officials WHOM would be horrified to have to vote for this piece a garbage legislation.

    FACT is go look what happened in Canada when they tried BILL-C61 which seems to be an awful lot like ACTA
    IT FAILED and now because fo that 67% want lower term rates
    and over 80% want protection for non commercial copying.

    NOW YOU WILL GET LESS WHICH YOU LAZY BASTARDS DESERVE.
    AND to boot that canuck gov't with its corruption scandalous and abuse and torture in Afghanistan is now dropping in polls worse then a lead rock. THe gainer , the ndp party
    YEA in another month at this rate your going to see them pass the liberals aka fibrals and the CONserveratives.

    they are gonna try and get something rammed at us and the next govt will repeal and destroy it

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    NAMELESS.ONE, Apr 27th, 2010 @ 8:20pm

    Also

    they said ACTA would be done by June of this year
    IF htis is half way then your saying 2012?
    GOOD election time in USA and by then we'll also have a new govt in Canada and one that won't be conservative.

    SLOWLY but surely were going to eradicate NON democratic govts around the world and YOU OBAMA are becoming ground zero
    with your mpaa, riaa , bsa buddies

     

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

  •  
    icon
    Nick Dynice (profile), Apr 27th, 2010 @ 9:23pm

    Ron Kirk is a jerk.

     

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

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 28th, 2010 @ 8:44am

    At the very least the release of ACTA has negated the once famous 'national security' argument always made by officials that wanted to keep it a secret. So either these people are compromising the security of this nation by releasing this document or the national security argument was a lie. and if they lied about that, why should I trust them from this point on?

     

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


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This