EU's ACTA Champion Rejects European Parliament Member's Request For ACTA Documents

from the more-secrecy dept

Even with ACTA supposedly in a "final" state, it appears that the negotiators just can't resist keeping up their level of stifling secrecy. Glyn Moody points us to the news that the EU's main backer of ACTA, Commissioner Karel De Gucht, has refused to turn over some "preparatory documents" concerning ACTA that were requested by European Parliament Member Francoise Castex. As the article notes, the European Commission is required to turn over such documents, as per the Vienna Convention, but De Gucht apparently has a different interpretation of all of that, saying that as long as he answers questions by MEPs, he has no obligation to turn over the documents.

It's really quite stunning how tone deaf ACTA supporters are on these issues. People have been asking for a modicum of transparency on this highly questionable agreement, and the response has been to be even more secretive. Of course, all this does is highlight that they know they're pushing an industry agenda, and they're ashamed of it. If you actually were putting together a proposal that benefited everyday citizens, they wouldn't be hiding all the details.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

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    The eejit (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 3:56am

    But Mike, don't you know that the terrorists are using piracy to steal our children from the moral, Christian ways of Hollywood?

    ...Sorry, I couldn't keep a straight face after "piracy".

     

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      Michael, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 5:14am

      Re:

      ...and clubbing baby seals.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 5:31am

      Re:

      I'm waiting for Hollywood Accounting to come up with the following:

      "Millions of children die, every minute, from piracy"
      "Piracy kills billions of whales every day"

      etc.

       

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        That Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 6:19am

        Re: Re:

        They did and in of all places on PBS.
        The US Chamber of Congress paid for a glowing "documentary" about all of the evils of piracy and copyright infringement.
        While there were some serious concerns about actual fake prescription drugs, the main message was when you buy a fake handbag from a street vendor your enforcing a world wide trafficking ring who will bring in terrorist and dirty bombs. They quoted the ever popular trillions of lost revenues and how it harmed everyone, but were careful to keep it all tightly bundled on every level. That if you torrent a tv show your supporting terrorist and gangs who will use all of the money they get to attack us.

         

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          Rikuo (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 8:33am

          Re: Re: Re:

          "That if you torrent a tv show your supporting terrorist and gangs who will use all of the money they get to attack us."

          Versus buying a legitimate music CD and the RIAA using that money to get ICE to attack perfectly legitimate websites...Yeah, that's why I don't buy 'legit' music from the RIAA!

           

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            Richard (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 9:32am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Not to mention the fact that the small amount of CD money that goes to artists mostly goes to a few very wealthy ones - many of whom have drug habits - which have arguably made drugs "cool" for their fans.

             

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    Pinky, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 5:22am

    What are we going to do today Brain?

     

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    drewmerc (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 5:31am

    Vienna Convention, Geneva Convention none of this matters when it's followed by the magic words ...but...but...piracy

     

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    iamtheky (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 7:14am

    can we get a "tired schtick" button

     

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    Adam Bell, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 7:32am

    Events like Karel De Gucht's refusal to turn over ACTA documents just highlights for everyone that ACTA only responds to a very narrow slice of special interests in such heinous ways that the specifics must be kept secret. Eventually, there's a backlash that destroys the whole house of cards.

     

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    Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 7:42am

    In addition...

    All involved members must drive around with the windows up and radio turned up when discussing ACTA.

    When discussing ACTA at a residence or hotel room, one member must disassemble all lamps and phones in a search for bugs while another member peers furtively through the venetian blinds.

     

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    Bruce Ediger (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 7:53am

    My takeaway on ACTA

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 7:54am

    Then make him answer questions.

    If he says it is ok to not turn over the documents as long as he answers questions, then they should play his game. Make him answer questions.

    Question 1: "What is the first word of the ACTA documents we are requesting?"
    Question 2: "What is the second word of the ACTA documents we are requesting?"
    Question 3: "What is the third word of the ACTA documents we are requesting?"

    ...

    Question n: "What is the nth word of the ACTA documents we are requesting?"

    I think he might just turn over the documents after he sees where this line of questions is heading.

     

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    Bruce Ediger (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 7:56am

    My takeaway on ACTA

    Dear me, I double posted, sorry.

    My takeaway from ACTA is that you can stonewall by being boring. The ACTA people, from the US Trade Rep office on down, just bore people, critics, sychophantic lawmakers, everyone. The ACTA people are boring beyond any previous benchmark.

    The dogged boringness seems to have worked. Nobody's too excited about it at all.

     

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    sam sin, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 8:24am

    i dont think it is a case of being ashamed of pushing an Industry Agenda. it is more a case of trying to hide the fact that money is changing hands to push an Industry Agenda. if the EU continues to do nothing over this, what is the point of having them rule on it? like the rest of the proposals the 'Industry' wants, they may just as well bring them in and openly say 'fuck all you ordinary citizens, this is what we want and this is what we are going to have! end of discussion!'

     

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      Bruce Ediger (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 11:48am

      Re:

      Doesn't merely saying the truth sometimes have the power to take all the power out of what you talk about?

      Saying "This is what we want, and this is what we are going to have, end of discussion" would make any laws derived from ACTA into something akin to a Caesar's decree, something minimally, grudgingly, enforced, but not respected.

      Saying that about enough laws, and the whole legal structure would get called into question. I personally would think the legitimacy of a legal system where things like ACTA get decreed would be minimal. I just might become a scofflaw, with only official respect for "officers" of the "court", "judges", "laws" and "legislators".

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2011 @ 8:52am

    First rule of ACTA you do not talk about ACTA.

     

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      The eejit (profile), Apr 25th, 2011 @ 9:24am

      Re:

      No, the first rule of ACTA is that you call critics Terrorist paedophilic nutjobs. The SECOIND rule fo ACTA is that you do not talk about ACTA.

       

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