USTR: We Can't Be Open About ACTA Because We Promised We Wouldn't Be (*Lobbyists Not Included)
from the missing-the-point dept
The US Trade Rep apparently has a thing on their website called “ask the ambassador” and Robin alerts us that recently a “James from Virginia” asked a rather important question:
“If the United States government gives all other governments in the ACTA negotiation a copy of a text, what is the rationale for keeping this a secret from the American public? Why would a negotiation at ACTA be less transparent than negotiations at World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) or the World Trade Organization (WTO)?”
The USTR’s answer is really a convenient non-answer. It basically says that it can’t reveal the details because everybody promised not to do so. Of course, that doesn’t explain why so many lobbyists have such detailed access to the info, and why other countries have revealed the details of the negotiations. The answer that “this is how we do things” isn’t particularly reassuring when corporations and diplomats are basically negotiating basic civil rights.