Copyright Alliance Invents New History (And New Meanings For 'Big' And 'Little') To Condemn Antigua

from the hoist-on-their-own-petard dept

We recently wrote about how, after a decade-long dispute, Antigua appeared to really be moving ahead with its plan to set up an online site that purposely offered infringing works, violating US copyright law -- and doing so with the authorization from the WTO as a response to the US breaking an existing trade agreement that helped collapse the online gambling industry that was based in Antigua. We've already noted that the US government (as it's been doing for years) has threatened retaliation if Antigua goes forward with the plan, even though the WTO has given it the stamp of approval (and ruled against the US multiple times in this dispute, almost all of which have been ignored by the US, with the US flat out lying at one point and pretending it won).

And, of course, it's not just the US government upset by this: the big copyright players have started sputtering out angry screeds. Take, for example, this absolutely laughable historical revisionism from the Copyright Alliance, which talks about just how "unfair" this whole thing would be, since it impacts third parties. This may be the most tone deaf statement from copyright maximalists in a long time (and that's saying something, given who we're talking about):
First, it raises a question of fundamental fairness about the appropriateness of punishing an unrelated group for circumstances beyond their control. U.S. copyright owners have found themselves chips in a high-stakes international game with no recourse. In addition, TRIPs obligations implicate many downstream stakeholders -- distributors and licensees, for example -- who rely on stable IP rights to function, so suspension of these obligations would affect many individuals and companies in other sectors and even other countries.
Wait, so suddenly the copyright players are concerned about "fairness" and the "appropriateness of punishing an unrelated group for circumstances beyond their control"? Really? So, um, I guess that means they're now against copyright term extension, which did exactly that. Or how about the very fact that IP agreements are included in international trade agreements -- which imposed significant and severe punishments on citizens of countries around the globe "for circumstances beyond their control."

Oh, and now "US copyright owners have found themselves chips in a high-stakes international game with no recourse." Welcome to the club. How about the whole of the public of the US and many, many other countries, who have found themselves exactly that: chips in a high-stakes international game with no recourse. The Big Copyright players, including those who funded and created the Copyright Alliance, have engaged in this game for decades, using the whole international trade game to force copyright maximalism through international trade agreements and then forcing draconian, anti-public laws on countries around the globe.

So, pardon me if I find it laughable that they of all people suddenly are whining when the shoe is (just slightly) on the other foot.

As for those "downstream stakeholders" who rely on "stable IP rights to function"... So, that must mean that the Copyright Alliance is against changes to copyright law, such as pulling works out of the public domain, which totally screwed over "downstream" merchants who were making use of those works. Oh, wait, they liked that ruling. Huh.

The fact is that the copyright industry has had the run of international trade agreements for a few decades. For an enlightening exploration of just how the big copyright players completely inserted themselves into international trade agreements, and used them as a key (some would argue the key) strategy for ratcheting up copyright laws around the globe, check out the book Information Feudalism by Peter Drahos and John Braithwaite. It tells the somewhat horrifying story about how a few powerful corporate interests effectively hijacked the TRIPS and WTO processes to use them to spread ratcheting up copyright and patent laws around the globe. We've seen that play out over the past few decades, and there's something absolutely ridiculous to see them now complaining when a single tiny WTO ruling goes against their interests.

Have they no shame?

And, of course, these same copyright maximalists have been instrumental in a number of international agreements since then that have only served to ramp up copyright rules and enforcement. Most recently, for example, we've talked about ACTA and TPP -- both of which would punish the public and harm downstream stakeholders, using them as an uninvolved pawn in a high-stakes international trade game with no recourse. Yet, somehow, the Copyright Alliance and their backers like that... because they're the ones pulling the strings.
Second, application in this situation seems to run counter to the purpose of cross-retaliation. Since the 1990s, Antigua has set itself up as a safe haven for offshore gambling. Licensing of gambling services make up a significant portion of the country’s revenues. Cross-retaliation as a remedy is, in theory, supposed to provide leverage to smaller, less-developed countries in trade disputes against larger nations. But the Antigua gambling industry is composed of large, international corporations.
Okay, now this one also makes me laugh. Notice these two paragraphs quoted one after the other. In the first one, the Copyright Alliance tries to argue that it's these poor "downstream stakeholders" who are impacted by Antigua's WTO-approved plans. In other words, "think of the poor little guy." In the second paragraph, it argues that this is unfair because it really benefits "large, international corporations."

Uh, guess whose copyrighted works are likely to be sold in this store? You guess it. Those large international corporations who funded and created the Copyright Alliance. It's so incredible dishonest to pretend that this dispute is about big companies in Antigua somehow harming the little guy in the US.

Really, the copyright maximalists apparently have absolutely no shame in historical revisionism and blatantly dishonest and misleading statements about the situation at hand.


Reader Comments (rss)

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    Ninja (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:12am

    Have they no shame?

    Obviously they have none. And actually u answered it yourself:

    Really, the copyright maximalists apparently have absolutely no shame in historical revisionism and blatantly dishonest and misleading statements about the situation at hand.

    Isn't that what we see here in TD? Shall I make a prediction?

    Cue trolling and flame wars in this topic comments in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1......

     

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      Ninja (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:15am

      Re:

      Hmm, was gonna add something in the middle and hit submit by mistake so here it goes:

      The US acts like the bullying kid when the bullied reacts: mommy, it's so unfair! (Despite all the time they spent making the lives of the weaker ones a living hell).

       

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        Tex Arcana (profile), Feb 3rd, 2013 @ 10:28am

        Re: Re:

        OOTB dupes are bannable.

        And your last line made absolutely NO sense.

        Pull the heroin needle out of your arm, the coke straw out of your nose, and the crack pipe out of your mouth, and you might be able to type something semi-coherent next time.

         

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    silverscarcat (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 9:17am

    Don't like history?

    Just make up your own. It's not like anyone will call you out on it.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:18pm

      Re: Don't like history?

      That's what they do. Make shit up. It's called creative license. It seems to work for them in movies, so why not do it with other things like history and math? And if someone does call you out on it, just pick yourself up, dust yourself off, rinse and repeat. Say it enough times and then it must be true right?

       

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    Zakida Paul (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:53am

    Copyright alliance talking about what is fair and unfair.

    Thanks, Techdirt, I needed a laugh.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:56am

    Another case of "Do what we say, not what we do." and failure to lead by example.

     

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    DannyB (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:58am

    Sauce for the Goose

    It is hilarious to hear copyright owners whine about how this affects third parties. Unfair punishment. No resourse. No due process. Waaaaaa!


    > Have they no shame?

    The answer should be obvious. But I'll say it. No, they do not.


    I would also like to point out Hollywood Accounting which Antigua may not be aware of. Using Hollywood Accounting, it may be necessary for Antigua to sell Billions and Billions of dollars worth of copyrighted works in order to recoup their $21 Million. The government would need to set up agencies that bill enormous "fees" to the stores that sell US copyrighted works, thus making them unprofitable. Heck, Star Wars is still not yet profitable.

     

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      Anonymous Monkey (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:04am

      Re: Sauce for the Goose

      Ya know what? I actually want to see Antigua actually do this! It would be so FASCINATING to watch.. I mean, really, what other time could you see someone ELSE do the creative accounting like that and see how Hollywood would react to it?!

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:03am

    The irony is that the US Government had legal recourse, but their argument was so weak that it didn't hold up in court.

    Sound familiar? That's because it's the same tired arguments made in the discovery process by copyright trolls.

     

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      Tex Arcana (profile), Feb 3rd, 2013 @ 10:34am

      Because, bullies

      Yeah, the problem is the United States of Copyright Bullies will pull a Grenada and send troops to Antigua to "defend the poor, trampled, underfed, beaten-down corporate citizens of the MPAA/RIAA/MAFIAA from the tyranny of those callous, mean, kiddie-diddling, movie-stealing, nun-raping, music-theiving MONSTERS who are trying to undermine the 'AmurriKKKorp Way!!"

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:03am

    Yeah. That took balls for the Copyright Alliance to try to make that argument - no brains - but gigantic brass balls.

     

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    matt C, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:20am

    turnabout is fair play

    live by the sword die by the sword

     

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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:22am

    It would be hilarious if, as a taunt, they created an Antiguan version of allofmp3.com

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:26am

    Always tearing down everybody else, but never discussing his own beliefs or morals. Sad.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:29am

      Re:

      Just give it up already, AJ. That bit is way past tired.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:35am

        Re: Re:

        Yeah, expecting Mike to state his beliefs about the fundamental issues at play in copyright is so tired and passe. He should just keep ripping apart everyone else's beliefs while making excuses about why he has no reason or ability to discuss his own. That's so productive and awesome.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:38am

          Re: Re: Re:

          No calling for him to answer questions that he's answered countless times because you don't like the answer is what is tired.

           

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            Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:40am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            But AC is right, Mike didn't address the graphic artists copyrights.

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:43am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            His answers are all nonresponsive. He claims to see no point in discussing the morality of things since in his opinion everyone gets to decide for themselves what's moral and what's not. How convenient. He claims that he's unable to have any opinions about whether there should be any copyright because the data is incomplete. How convenient. Mike has tons of opinions about what's moral and what copyright should look like, despite the fact that he has incomplete data and that everyone has their own version of morality. But when asked to discuss the details about why he believes or even what exactly it is he does believe, he runs away. Every time. Always an excuse, never just an honest and direct answer. Nothing dishonest about a person who rips everyone else's beliefs while conveniently refusing to discuss his own. Oh wait, that's totally dishonest.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:50am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Now that I think about it AJ, I really don't need to worry about whether or not you will attempt to raise children (as I have stated in the past) and the travesties that would ensue from such an attempt. Do you know why? Because that would first require you to find someone that you could HAVE children with and THAT would require you to actually GET A LIFE.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:53am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Care to comment on how Mike always has an excuse for why he shouldn't discuss his own beliefs about copyright? Doesn't it seem odd that someone so opinionated would all of the sudden have all sorts of reasons why he can't form an opinion on several issues that get to the very heart of the copyright debate (a debate that obviously is very, very important to him)? It's so odd, it's unbelievable, right? Be honest.

                 

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                  Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:57am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Morality not the issue with regards to copyrights, you've already been told it is the right to copy, not the right to monetize.

                  If you want to give it away, you're welcome to it. If you want to sell, you're welcome to it.

                  The reason other's give your stuff away? Already stated time and time and time again. You are not going to magically turn back the time.

                  Morals or not. You seem like a damn Catholic trying to guilt people into believing. How's that loyalty working out for you thus far? After all, you spend 5yrs and 2 million dollars of blood, sweat and tears.

                  Get it yet? Morals are not the issue. It's morally wrong to fuck your neighbour's wife, or he to fuck yours, but it's not illegal!

                   

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                    Robert (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:01pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    Forgot to add:

                    And in your world view, because it is morally wrong to covet thy neighbour's wife, we need to modify our prostitution laws and apply them to all forms of intercourse, because it's morally wrong on some grounds.

                    I mean, people fucking without paying, all the prostitutes will go broke! Think of their children and their education they are paying for! You'll kill the economy.

                     

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                    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:44pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    You actually think he would have a wife or have a chance with his neighbor's wife (or any other human being for that matter)?

                     

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                  Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:02pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  You are a very sad little man leading a very sad little existence.

                   

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                  Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:58pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  I am fairly certain that if Mike ever did answer your question, and you got your information (No idea why you seem to be so intent on getting an answer)...then what?

                  I mean, I am guessing there's a few reasons as to why you need this information. You either A) want to use it to embarrass him, which makes sense since you see him as a being of pure evil or B) create a meaningful discussion based on the answer.

                  Frankly, I can't see either being advantageous mainly because at this point in time, no one's willing to listen to or respect you as you voice your opinion, which is strange because most people here know you're not an idiot. However, people don't tend to listen to asshole too thoroughly.

                   

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                    John Fenderson (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:45pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    It's A. There is no such thing as a meaningful discussion with AJ. What this is is just the latest transparent attempt to bait Mike with loaded questions that, no matter what the answer, will provide further fuel for AJ's MikeHate Machine.

                     

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                    Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 2:02pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    I am fairly certain that if Mike ever did answer your question, and you got your information (No idea why you seem to be so intent on getting an answer)...then what?

                    Actually we know the answer to that, because I've answered his questions, at length, multiple times. And "then what" is that he pretends I have not answered the questions, changes the questions slightly, pretends I said something entirely different, and goes on a tantrum on a bunch of unrelated posts about how I won't answer his questions and that I "run away."

                    There is no such thing as answering his questions. That would ruin his whole schtick. He can't actually provide any discussion of value so his entire personality is based on being the victim.

                     

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                      identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 6:30am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      Actually we know the answer to that, because I've answered his questions, at length, multiple times. And "then what" is that he pretends I have not answered the questions, changes the questions slightly, pretends I said something entirely different, and goes on a tantrum on a bunch of unrelated posts about how I won't answer his questions and that I "run away."

                      On the contrary, Mike. You do run away every time. You refuse to discuss the morality issue, giving all sorts of reasons why you won't answer but never actually discussing the issue directly. You refuse to discuss which justifications for copyright you subscribe to. You clearly like the utilitarian rationale, but you refuse to address the issue as to whether you think other rationales have any merit. As to your claim that copyright should maximize the promotion of the progress, you refuse to explain which interpretation of "promote the progress" you subscribe (I'm aware of four different interpretations, and yours could be a fifth). You refuse to explain what it means to promote the progress or how one would measure it exactly.

                      You answer questions with more questions, rather than just with answers. You say: "But wouldn't it be better if there were no exclusion and everybody made even more money?" Sure, Mike. That'd be great. But transitioning to such a system will take a long time. You need to prove that these alternatives are in fact better. You haven't even come close to doing that for a few specific cases, much less for all the cases in general. Nor does that explain why you're so upset about anyone actually excluding others in the meantime. You refuse to explain why, when you admit that your alternatives haven't proven themselves for everyone, you are so against people making money and feeding their children by exercising exclusive rights.

                      The fact is, Mike, that you throw out a bunch of high-level stuff without ever delving into the issues that are fundamental to copyright. You never discuss the problem of free riding directly. You refuse to say either way whether there is something fundamentally wrong about the situation where Person A puts time, money, energy, and resources into creating a valuable work, and then Person B takes that thing of value and sells it while keeping all the profits. Since Person B didn't expend anything creating the work, it is considered by most to be unfair and wrong for him to profit from it. You won't address that very simple, fundamental issue directly. So no, I'm asking unrelated questions and moving the goalposts. I have a series of highly relevant questions that are agreed far and wide to be fundamental to the copyright issue that you simply won't answer.

                      If you want to prove to the world that you are answering questions, then address these points directly. Nothing would make me happier than to run through this stuff directly with you. Let's dig into the nuances, rather than pretend like you're above discussing any of it. You want a seat at the table? Well then show that there's more to you than silly hit pieces like this article where you're arguing that it's OK for Antigua to attack copyright holders who had nothing to do with this because the US cracked down on gambling. Actually man up and discuss the difficult issues directly. Let's have a productive discussion. Let's not have more of you skirting the issues and then pretending like you answered everything. I'm here whenever you want to have a meaningful discussion on the merits. Just let me know.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 7:11am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Right on cue with the pretending the questions haven't been answered.

                         

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                        Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 8:38am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        ...meaningful discussion on the merits.

                        You want nothing of the sort AJ. You keep saying it. It simply isn't true. And one needs only look at your comment history here to prove it. It takes literally no effort to determine what your purpose is in being here.

                        You're a belligerent troll and everyone here knows it.

                        Everyone.

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 9:21am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          You want nothing of the sort AJ. You keep saying it. It simply isn't true. And one needs only look at your comment history here to prove it. It takes literally no effort to determine what your purpose is in being here.

                          You're a belligerent troll and everyone here knows it.

                          Everyone.


                          I'm here to discuss things on the merits. What would you like to talk about? Ask me anything (within reason), and I'll tell you what I'm thinking. I won't give you a bunch of reasons why I shouldn't answer your question. I'll just answer your question directly.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 9:34am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            I'd like to talk to you about something. I have a question I'd like answered. Do you still beat your wife?

                            1. Yes, you have stopped beating your wife.

                            2. No, you have not stopped beating your wife.

                            It's a simple question, there is no room for additional responses. It's either 1 or 2. Yes or no. Don't wiggle around or run away. Those are your choices. Choose. Or you're not open and honest and awesome and are just a coward who refuses to answer the question

                             

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                              Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 10:09am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              Your questions presume that I have in fact beat my wife, which is false. What's that got to do with the questions that Mike refuses to answer? For example, why is Mike completely unable to give us his best guess as to whether authors should have some sort of copyright rights? And why is Mike completely unable to discuss whether there is something inherently unjust about reaping where one has not sown? Neither one of those questions assumes something that is not true, so your example doesn't work. It merely asks him to state an opinion on a given matter.

                               

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                                Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 10:48am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                Arrogant, belligerent troll.

                                We all know it. We've witnessed your puking all over the comments of articles too many times.

                                Get new tactics. The ones you're currently using don't work.

                                Grow up.

                                 

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                            Tex Arcana (profile), Feb 3rd, 2013 @ 10:48am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            No, you're not. You're here to stalk Masnick, derail his discussions, ask questions that are formed to put whatever answer he gives in the worst possible light (at least, in your tiny little brain), and then crow to the world he doesn't answer your questions because he refuses to allow you to use said leading questions to paint him into a corner.

                            On top of that, you're too gutless to be anything more than an "anonymous coward", and don't have the creativity or imagination to create a "character" that has its own email associated with it, so when the crowd starts flaming you in email, your real emails aren't flooded with said flames.

                            Atop of that, you won't discuss ANYTHING with a modicum of civility or graciousness, and you won't consider that those opposing opinions are just as worthy as your own, and possible better or more correct.

                            In other words, you refuse to learn.

                            Ignorance is the absence of information and knowledge.

                            Stupidity is the inability to learn information and knowledge.

                            Therefore: you, sir, are stupid. QED

                             

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                Tex Arcana (profile), Feb 3rd, 2013 @ 10:37am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                He could rape someone, then pass legislation that makes aborting the fetus a criminal offense for "disposing of evidence"... o___O O___o

                 

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              Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:09pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Looking at this entire site, and this thread in particular: http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130130/23085521833/former-riaa-vp-named-2nd-command-copyright-off ice.shtml it appears that he is happy to discuss his opinions in detail. It's just that he's not responding to your totally loaded questions based on logical fallacies.

              Perhaps that's because of this: http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120818/01171420087/funniestmost-insightful-comments-week-techdirt .shtml#c1210

              Doesn't look like anyone running away. Looks like someone having a thorough and nuanced conversation... along with someone else (who appears to be you) whining and sniping and asking bullshit questions.

               

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          Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:49pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Your petulance is simply sad.

           

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:27am

    lol how about megaantiguan.com or theantiguanbay.com

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:27am

    Did it not ever occur to Hollydud that by seeing that these IP laws were all put into effect that any punishment by misdeed could well come see them? They were eager for the benefits of lockdown bt evidently when it comes to losing out on the money suddenly that's a different horse.

    They've driven the government to do all sorts of laws in their favor. Here's one fair and balanced, given by a party not to gain from gambling ruling that until the US honors it's agreements it expects everyone else on the globe to honor, that it will have to pay the piper.

    I've no sympathy for the copytrolls.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:33am

    Just occurred to me...

    How long do you think it will be before TPB reaches out to the Antiguan government (or vice-versa) for a partnership?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 11:46am

    The new ads are really bad. Is there a way to keep from seeing two men kill themselves on the home page or must I use adblock on this site?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:54pm

    Reminds of how some non-democratic countries put the word "democratic" into their names.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 12:59pm

    I can't stop laughing. Turnabout truly is fair play. I may end up subscribing to Antigua's service just for the sheer poetic justice of it.

     

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    mattshow (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:11pm

    To me the most frustrating aspect of this story isn't really a copyright issue at all: it's the rhetoric being used by US representatives and copyright holders to make it sound as if they have been acting in good faith, and it's the Antiguans who aren't playing fair. For instance, you hear the US representatives talk about how Antigua's actions jeopardize "productive settlement negotiations".

    What settlement? The US was found in violation of their treaty obligations by the WTO, and that violation is costing Antigua $21M a year. The US talking about settlement negotiations makes it sound as if there is something left to argue about. There isn't. There's nothing to "settle" here. The dispute is over and the US lost. They refuse to pay the money, so Antigua is finding a way to get the money.

    There's nothing to negotiate here. If the US doesn't want Antigua to do this, they can pay what they owe. And if the copyright holders don't like Antigua's plan, they can pressure the US government to pay what they owe.

    This whole thing stems from the US refusal to pay what they owe, but they try to spin it like somehow, it's Antigua's fault.

     

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    Internet Zen Master (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:25pm

    But technically they DO have a point

    The content industry has ended up, through no fault of its own, as part of the pot in a high-stakes poker game between the US and Antigua, when they had nothing to do with (as far as I can tell), the United States' outdated, Puritan anti-gambling views that helped lead to their blockade on Antigua's online gambling industry.

    After all, the Copyright Alliance isn't a part of the United States government, so why should it pay for the US being a jackass? If we really wanted to be fair about things, the US gambling industry would be the ones getting shafted by Antigua, not the content industry.

    That being said, all the Internet Zen Master has to say to the members of the CA is: "Now you know how we felt when you tried to force SOPA on the American public. And PIPA. And ACTA...

    So forgive me if I'm not exactly pouring out my heart with sympathy for your plight. Show us that your bottom line is dramatically affected with some *GASP* REAL ACCOUNTING (verifiable by at least 55 non-Hollywood affiliated CPAs), and then we'll be willing to listen.

    Until you do that, tough luck bitches."

     

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      John Fenderson (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 1:51pm

      Re: But technically they DO have a point

      Yes, they do have a point. But their ire is directed at the wrong party. They should be mad at the US for this, not Antigua.

       

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      WDS (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 2:29pm

      Re: But technically they DO have a point

      "After all, the Copyright Alliance isn't a part of the United States government, ..."

      How can you tell?? They are in all the back rooms of government helping make the laws. The Justice Department makes announcements from their (members) offices. They tell the government which websites to go after. What exactly is the distinction????

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:05pm

      No, they really don't have a point

      This did not happen through no fault of their own. They open themselves up to this possibility when the pushed to include copyrights in every trade agreement everywhere. Don't want to be governed by the WTO and get caught up in trade disputes? Don't plaster your shit all over trade agreements. Make no mistake, they were the ones that pushed for inclusion in trade agreements when the results were in their favor, now that that's not working out they're trying to play by a different set of rules from everything else that's included in trade agreements.

       

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      Tex Arcana (profile), Feb 3rd, 2013 @ 11:01am

      Re: But technically they DO have a point

      "... the United States' outdated, Puritan anti-gambling views..." isn't the views of the United States, or their majority. It's the "...outdated, Puritan anti-gambling views" of a small group of people who are trying to force their morals and ideals upon an American public that patently does not WANT those views. And the same can be said for sex and sexual mores, as well.

      Americans for the most part get the fact that, for the reasonable person with a modicum of self-control, gambling (sex)can be a very good thing. With the right tax structure in place, gambling (sex) can help fill local and state governments' coffers, which can be used for really good things, like schools, roads, and health care (and not the thievery that exists these days).

      It's the mind-control experts (preachers and religious nuts) that keep saying "GAMBLING (SEX) IS BAD!! YOU MUST STOP SPENDING MONEY UPON GAMBLING (SEX), AND GIVE IT TO THE LAWWWWWD (ME)!!!" Politicians fall into line when said "men of the cloth" start buying their own legislation with the obscene money they fleece off their flocks, in order to try to impose theri own particular view of morality upon the rest of the population.

      It doesn't work. It ain't gonna work. And if some pedopreacher tries to force me to do something I don't want to do, I'll resist, violently and with deadly force if I have to.

       

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      masquisieras, Feb 4th, 2013 @ 2:41am

      Re: But technically they DO have a point

      An technically they do not have it.

      They were the ones that put themselves as part of trade agreements.

      So when one party (EEUU) break the trade agreement why should keep the wronged party (Antigua) the broken agreement.

      They used other forms of trade as leverage to get what they wanted that means that you are not a independent third party you are part of trade with Antigua what they are asking for is to be considered part of trade when is advantageous for them and a third party when the consequences comes to bite them.

       

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    Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 4:10pm

    But the Antigua gambling industry is composed of large, international corporations.
    Well that may be true, but since the entire GDP of Antigua is about $1.13Billion and this is about the country not the corporations in it I'm struggling to see the relevance...

    Except of course for trying to portray a "Oh woe is us.. poor poor us... pleeease don't cost us the few measly pence we earn..." face. Of course then it'd be just as relevant to point out that the WTO, who told them to do it, represent countries worth trillions & trillions... that looks even scarier, no?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 5:08pm

    After all the times US interests have used the USTR to bootstrap enforcement expansion into trade agreements it's poetic how indiscriminate mixing of the two has backfired on them here.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 1st, 2013 @ 6:17pm

    I would almost say they would be justified to claim that but since they use the government to do their dirty work that the government has no place in doing they're getting what's coming to them.

     

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    Justin Olbrantz (Quantam), Feb 1st, 2013 @ 10:46pm

    Let Me Google That for You...

    "Second, application in this situation seems to run counter to the purpose of cross-retaliation. Since the 1990s, Antigua has set itself up as a safe haven for offshore gambling. Licensing of gambling services make up a significant portion of the country’s revenues. Cross-retaliation as a remedy is, in theory, supposed to provide leverage to smaller, less-developed countries in trade disputes against larger nations. But the Antigua gambling industry is composed of large, international corporations."

    GDP of the United States: $14,991,300,000,000
    GDP of Antigua and Barbuda: $1,118,000,000

    The latter divided by the former = 0.0075%.
    Yeah, I'd say that qualifies as a small, less-developed country going up against a large nation.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 11:15am

    Arrogant, belligerent troll.

    We all know it. We've witnessed your puking all over the comments of articles too many times.

    Get new tactics. The ones you're currently using don't work.

    Grow up.


    I'm just trying to discuss the issues. Perhaps one day you'll be able to join the conversation in a positive way.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 12:50pm

      Re:

      I'm just trying to discuss the issues.

      No, you're not AJ. Your abusive tactics are well known and easily recognized. By everyone. Your comment history proves that you cannot be trusted. Ever.

      If you ever expect anyone to take you serious and engage with you in any type of discussion, you'd best learn some humility and civility.

      Because, until you do that, you're nothing but an arrogant, belligerent troll.

       

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      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
         
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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2013 @ 3:03pm

        Re: Re:

        No, you're not AJ. Your abusive tactics are well known and easily recognized. By everyone. Your comment history proves that you cannot be trusted. Ever.

        If you ever expect anyone to take you serious and engage with you in any type of discussion, you'd best learn some humility and civility.

        Because, until you do that, you're nothing but an arrogant, belligerent troll.


        You seem to know a thing or two about being a belligerent troll, as you're doing it so well here. The fact remains that I'm here ready to discuss the issues on the merits. You, on the other hand, are just spewing venom. The troll is obviously you. Let me know if you ever want to discuss the issues on the merits. I'd be happy to oblige you.

         

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    Killion of HF Boards, Oct 26th, 2013 @ 4:55am

    Fuck the Copyright Alliance! Them (and the RIAA especially) are just as big as scum as that dirtbag Bin Laden! I can't wait for the day a giant meteor comes crashing down on top of all those hypocritical brainless money grubbing piece of devil worshipping trash! And watch that meteor send them to the fiery pits below, where last time I checked, money is absolutely pointless down there!

     

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