Another One Bites The Dust: Australian Parliament Committee Recommends Rejecting ACTA

from the too-many-secrets dept

While most of the attention on ACTA has been focused on the growing likelihood that Europe will reject the treaty, it appears that something similar is happening down under as well. The Australian Parliament's "Joint Standing Committee on Treaties" is now recommending that Australia reject ACTA as well.
“The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties has thoroughly examined the text, the arguments and the positions taken by other governments and sees the writing on the wall; there appears a very real possibility that ACTA will not be ratified by sufficient countries in order to come into existence,” said Senator Ludlam.

“The Greens would welcome ACTA being ruled out completely because the content of this treaty is fatally flawed and the process that brought it about was shamefully and unnecessarily secretive. While our government did hold consultations they were farcical because those being consulted did not have the secret text and therefore couldn’t provide advice and feedback.

“Australia’s parliamentary committee is not alone in its detailed criticism of this Agreement. No less than five European Parliament Committees have recommended it be rejected. Several EU countries have suspended consideration until further notice and the Dutch Lower house has recommended its rejection outright. Hundreds of thousands of people have come out in demonstrations against ACTA throughout Europe and the United States.
What struck me as most interesting in this was the fact that Australia is also one of the major parties involved in negotiating the TPP agreement -- which is even more secretive than ACTA. Indeed, Senator Ludlam spoke out about that as well, comparing the two agreements:
“ACTA may well go down if governments listen to their people and parliamentary committees, however, many of the interests that drove ACTA are currently driving the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement – the obligations of this Agreement being negotiated in secret will affect very similar areas such as affordable medicines, Australian content and digital copyright issues.”
If this keeps up, ACTA is going to end up being an agreement between the US and Morocco and that's about it...


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    saulgoode (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 11:44am

    If this keeps up, ACTA is going to end up being an agreement between the US and Morocco and that's about it...

    Or rather between President Obama and Morocco -- if Congress doesn't approve the trade agreement then it is not constitutional.

     

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  2.  
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    BeaverJuicer (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 11:54am

    The Greens would welcome ACTA being ruled out completely because the content of this treaty is fatally flawed and the process that brought it about was shamefully and unnecessarily secretive. While our government did hold consultations they were farcical because those being consulted did not have the secret text and therefore couldn’t provide advice and feedback.


    I absolutely love this quote. Australia just went up another notch in my books.

     

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  3.  
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    gorehound (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 11:54am

    Hahaha ! ACTA & TPP should just go away.And so should the MAFIAA.
    So say we all.

     

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  4.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 11:56am

    I'm Confused

    What does Austrailia have to do with ACTA?

    I could see Austria, but not Austrailia.

    I mean, Austrailia isn't anywhere NEAR the Atlantic Ocean.

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    arcan, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:04pm

    Re: I'm Confused

    ACTA has nothing to do with the atlantic. Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. atlantic does not enter the equation.

     

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

  6. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:10pm

    when are you going to work it out,, that a parlimentry committee is not the GOVERNMENT !!!!

    oh well,, it's easier to remain stupid right Mansick ??

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:12pm

    what was the name of the Aussi attorney general or whoever that recently signed to accept some agreement without consulting anyone? if she cant get ACTA through, then Gillard will find a way of getting it brought into law. from what i gather she is a bought and paid for entertainment industries backer and US arse licker

     

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  8. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:16pm

    it's also politicians JOB to disagree, and argue, and complain, if they did not do that, they would not have a job..

    just like it's laywers job to find loopholes and ways around something..

    Therefore you saying, 'politicians' are arguing, is pointless, we know they argue, it's their job..

    Just like your job is to misrepresent the truth !!!..

     

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

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:19pm

    Re:

    Not Obama but Biden. Obama doesn't take a stand on IP himself and just passes them along to Biden. When it comes to IP Biden is in charge, not Obama.

     

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

  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:20pm

    Re:

    Don't look now, but your jealousy is showing.

     

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

  11.  
    icon
    Cory of PC (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:21pm

    Re:

    Ow... my head. So stupid... can't think of something to comment on...

     

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

  12.  
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    Chosen Reject (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:25pm

    Re:

    Where did you see the confusion? Mike refers to the committee both in the title and in the text. Nowhere does Mike refer to the government. The only mention of the government is in the quotes from the committee and the senator.

     

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  13.  
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    Cerberus (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:26pm

    According to Wikipedia, ACTA needs six countries to ratify it before coming into force. If three more countries drop out besides Europe and Australia, such as Mexico, New Zealand, and South Korea, then America will have to find new countries for it to come into force at all.

     

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

  14.  
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    Cory of PC (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:27pm

    *humming*

    And another one gone, and another one gone
    Another one bites the dust
    Hey, I'm gonna get you too...

    ... Wait, who was I getting?

     

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

  15.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:27pm

    Re: Re:

    Don't bother, he lives in his own little world.

     

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

  16.  
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    Cory of PC (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:28pm

    Re:

    ... Europe is a country?

     

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

  17.  
    identicon
    Masa, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:28pm

    Funny how evil things can be noticed even other side of this Tiny Blue Dot. And since Someone also cares about it, it nice be here.

     

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

  18.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:29pm

    Re: Re: I'm Confused

    Ah! Okay.

    I thought it had to do with the Atlantic, you know, since the TPP is Trans-Pacific Partnership.

    Easily to be confused by that.

     

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

  19.  
    identicon
    Mason Wheeler, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:30pm

    Re: Re:

    And yet it wasn't Biden who illegally signed ACTA. Truman may be long gone, but the buck still stops at the President's desk, especially when talking about the President's own actions.

     

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

  20.  
    identicon
    DogBreath, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:40pm

    It's all beginning to make sense now...

    If this keeps up, ACTA is going to end up being an agreement between the US and Morocco and that's about it...

    Morocco is the sidekick for who? None other than... "Secret Squirrel".

    "In the military community, the term "Secret Squirrel" refers to military projects that are classified TOP SECRET or higher. It can also refer to any project that is abnormally secretive."

     

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

  21.  
    icon
    KelvinZevallos (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:47pm

    Re:

    Then we can say certain politicians haven't been doing their "job" with certain bills (SOPA/PIPA).

     

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

  22.  
    identicon
    DogBreath, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:49pm

    Re:

    it's also politicians JOB to disagree, and argue, and complain, if they did not do that, they would not have a job..

    just like it's laywers job to find loopholes and ways around something..

    Therefore you saying, 'politicians' are arguing, is pointless, we know they argue, it's their job..

    Just like your job is to misrepresent the truth !!!..




    Just as it's your job to have a misspent youth. I can see it is still working out well for you. Which politician are you?

     

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

  23.  
    identicon
    Pedro, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:52pm

    Re:

    Like Cory of PC says, is Europe a country Cerberus? *facepalm*

     

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

  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:52pm

    US, Morocco and Canada, since Harper is such a tool.

    He basically begged the US to let him suck their dick just to get into the TPP clubhouse. In an agreement that requires Canada to just blindly say 'Yep' to whatever was in there before hand.

    Harper is making Canada the hat for the US that everyone thinks it is.

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 12:55pm

    Those who resort to violence to maintain and advance their market position should not be tolerated. Governments use violence to enforce laws. Abolish IP. Abolish all anti-competitive laws.

     

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

  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 1:05pm

    Re: Re:

    In this context Europe is one country and Switzerland, well I guess they were somewhat part of the negotiations (ch, in the minutes, which some less knowledgeable journalists mistook for China!), but they are not a country according to ACTA!

    Welcome to the world of ACTA-logic. :)

     

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  27.  
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    PopeyeLePoteaux, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 1:07pm

    Re:

    Mexican Senate rejected signing ACTA since October, I was surprised that the senate in my country voted for droping out from ACTA negotiations.

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 1:28pm

    Re:

    "it's easier to remain stupid right Mansick"

    Says the man who throws in random commas everywhere.

     

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

  29.  
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    freeinternet777 (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 1:58pm

    Re:

    Nicola Roxon...signed agreements with Janet Napolitano (I mean - what is US Homeland Security doing in Australia anyway) which may make it a smoother ride to get extradited to the US.

     

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

  30.  
    identicon
    IronM@sk, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 2:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: I'm Confused

    Fail. Been living under a rock for the past few years?

     

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

  31.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 3:51pm

    Personally I think all the rejections of ACTA at this point are mostly a farce for show.

    Why bother fighting the fight to get ACTA into law? Wouldn't it just be easier to try to work most of the provisions into TPP. I mean, how long can the people sustain their "righteous ire", and hopefully by the time we're ready to roll out TPP most of the people have gone "back to sleep" and we can slide it under the door like we tried to do with ACTA.

    The sad part is that is an exact quote uttered by someone involved in the entertainment industry.

     

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

  32.  
    icon
    silverscarcat (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 4:03pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: I'm Confused

    Oh, knock it off, I can get confused by acronyms as easily as anyone else.

     

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

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 5:06pm

    In and of itself, this isn't terribly meaningful.
    http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Senate/Powers_practice_n_procedures/briefs/brief 04
    "The role of committees is to investigate and to draw attention to what they find. They throw ‘light in dark corners’ and give advice."

    It'd be nice if this report meant our current Government was forced to abandon ACTA, but it doesn't. Not yet. Politics and such can still rear it's ugly head and ignore this committee's recommendation(s).

     

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

  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 5:12pm

    Re:

    Not even bothering to key in your moniker name now, are you darryl? You're just jealous that people don't consider you the average Australian.

     

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

  35.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 6:46pm

    Re:

     

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

  36.  
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    Cerberus (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 7:41pm

    Re: Re:

    What do you think? It is like saying, "Six fruits are needed. If three more fruits drop out besides this fruit basket and the apple (both of which have already dropped out), there won't be enough fruits left." In this case, the "basket" is conveniently subsumed under "Europe", because both Switzerland and the EU are already likely to drop out.

     

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

  37.  
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    Cerberus (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 7:43pm

    Re: Re:

    Did you really think someone on Techdirt wouldn't know Europe wasn't a country? See above if you really didn't understand. I have lived in Europe all my life, for the record.

     

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

  38.  
    icon
    Cerberus (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 7:56pm

    Re: Re:

    Oh, yes, according to poster "Open ACTA Mexico", the Mexican senate have the final say, so it seems likely that you will drop out.

    The only caveat seems to be that they only ask/tell the president to "suspend participating in the negotiations" ("suspenda el proceso de las negociaciones de nuestro país"): so there is a theoretical chance that they will in the end, perhaps after new elections, resume negotiations.

    However, the fact that they want all sorts of academics and other groups to analyse the treaty, and that they express strong concern about violations of civil rights, means that they will probably drop out. So yay, only two more drop-outs required...

     

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

  39.  
    icon
    Cerberus (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 8:04pm

    Re:

    But it is a good start! Especially with all the world watching. And the Australian parliament, how are its members distributed between pro and contra? This committee could both be an indicator of parliamentary inclinations and influence them...

     

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

  40.  
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    Cerberus (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 8:05pm

    Re:

     

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

  41.  
    identicon
    Josh Taylor, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 9:02pm

    The Great Down Under may reject ACTA, but it will not reject TPP.

     

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

  42.  
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    G Thompson (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 9:22pm

    Re:

    The stupids, they are strong with this one

     

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

  43.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 9:59pm

    Re: Re:

    Members are split between those in government and those not in government. And the party whips ensure that party discipline is maintained. We do not have the same system as the USA.

     

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

  44.  
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    Violated (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 12:50am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I'm Confused

    Welcome to the party then.

    I would also expect the Pacific in TPP-A to only be related to where they are holding the talks. The aim of this agreement would be to make it global starting with western economies and where TPP-A is really being pushed by the United States.

     

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  45.  
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    Chargone (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 1:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I'm Confused

    indeed. they're Annoying.

    and Americans seem generally obsessed with them :P

    usual practice here (so far as i've seen, and in written form) is to use the full term the first time the thing appears in a given document/article/whatever and mark the abbreviation in parentheses immediately after, then use it. (or, if the abbreviation is in wide circulation as the common term, the other way around)

    of course, eventually, if used enough, such abbreviations sort of morph into words in their own right and that stops happening... but they also stop getting written in all caps :)

     

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

  46.  
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    Chargone (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 1:06am

    Re: Re:

    ...
    ...
    ...

    she should probably be grateful she lives in a 'civilized' country where assassination is not considered a viable response to such nonsense.

     

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

  47.  
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    Chargone (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 1:08am

    Re:

    would that i could trust the NZ government to do so *le sigh*

     

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

  48.  
    icon
    Violated (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 1:23am

    Re:

    Multiple organizations wanting to control, monitor, regulate, censor or attack the Internet will be a very long battle indeed.

    I see things like this when to begin with the Internet was just between college and university nerds where few much cared. Then it opened to the general public and then became a major economic forum.

    Only now have those bad organizations began to realise certain facts like the trillion dollar industry, how Internet activism can overthrow Government policy or like the Arab Spring the very Governments, there is of course crime beyond infringement, then as they now realise the Internet contains a vast array of data for billions of people which only needs the right tap.

    To put it directly the Internet and life as we know it is under great threat. All these people with traditional power have woken up and their eyes gleam as they pondering cutting out out their own slice of the Internet pie and how doing so would give them immense power like never before.

    Do you really think your average Net citizens would sit and do nothing while the Internet as they know it now is torn apart? I can certainly tell you that more people read these technology pages for the politics of the Internet than other people do for all other forms of politics combined.

    I would claim that the Internet is the greatest creation of our generation where more and more people are getting empowered as they come to realise that their actions can make change. The great War over the Internet and the revolution if not total independence is yet to come but people are indeed awake, arming up and growing in numbers by the day.

     

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

  49.  
    icon
    Chargone (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 1:26am

    Re: Re: Re:

    a system which has it's upsides and it's downsides:

    on the one hand, it's harder to buy votes (how much so depends on how the party is organized. NZ's Labour party, for example, you'd basically have to buy off the majority of it's MPs, minimum. some of the others you'd actually have to buy off their constituents, the rest, their leadership, which is always more than one person) even before getting into other regulations.

    on the other hand, the 'party line' can be quite problematic in it's own right. i'm sure there's been a few bills that, if conscience votes (that is, the members are free to vote independently, rather than by party), would have had Very different results.

    of course, Officially, anyone can 'cross the floor'(metaphorically speaking) at any time... they just have very good odds of loosing all support from their party... which for electorate MPs means their odds of winning the next election, if they even run, plummet, and list MPs aren't getting back in at ALL (unless they pull off something awesome. and i'm not entirely sure if they get to keep their seat for the rest of the term as independents having got in on the party list if the party throws them out for such actions.)... but that doesn't happen.

    conscience votes are usually saved for constitutional questions, which mostly means things that affect the election process, and occasionally issues with a significant moral aspect where the public will is hard to read and guessing wrong will screw the party over... so they make it a conscience vote, bailing on any responsibility for the outcome... (which also has odd results. the 'anti-smacking bill' which, despite it's 'think of the children' type goals (not just rhetoric, though there was plenty of that) for example, was a highly problematic piece of legislation which there was great public outcry against... was introduce as a 'private member's bill' (which means it was not submitted by way of party policy and the like, but by an individual acting as an individual, went through a lottery process, and was pulled as one of the issues to be considered), voted on as a conscience vote... don't think it quite got 100% of parliament, but it came damn close... despite it's many issues and the fact that for most, in the public mind, it was not 'pro child welfare' or 'anti abuse' but 'anti-parent' or 'pro state control of individual's home lives' so you didn't even have that 'no one wants to vote against laws to stop child porn' type effect going on...

    ultimately, representative democracy, isn't...
    and governance under such a system i one of the very few jobs in the world where the skills required to attain it have NOTHING to do with the skills required to perform it.

    (winning popularity contests is not the same as making wise choices for the long term well being of a nation.)

     

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

  50.  
    icon
    Cory of PC (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 3:56pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Sorry... I have a bit of a literal mind, taking things and processing them... well, literally, in my head. Still, I get the EU part, but not Europe as a whole, since I know not all of Europe is part of the EU.

     

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


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