As Countries Sign ACTA, Many Finally Admit Their Copyright Laws Will Need To Change

from the of-course-they-did dept

It will come as little news to most people that, as was expected, the US signed the ACTA treaty (while pretending it was an “executive agreement”) this weekend in Japan. While the EU, Mexico and Switzerland at least had the sense to wait until they had more of a chance to review the legality of the document, the US dove right in, despite huge Constitutional questions about its ability to sign the agreement — especially as more evidence was put forth showing that (contrary to the US’s claims) ACTA is inconsistent with US law.

The US, of course, was not the only one to sign — and not the only one to recognize that ACTA is inconsistent with local laws, despite promises to the contrary. Canada signed as well, and used it to say that Canada now needs to implement more copyright reform to keep Canada in line with the treaty:

Fast?s office said the government still needs to create and pass legislation to implement the anti-counterfeiting agreement in Canada.

Funny, since all along we kept hearing how ACTA wasn’t about changing laws in various countries, but just coming to agreements on how enforcement would be carried out. In fact, when criticized about ACTA, the former Canadian Minister of Industry insisted that ACTA would not require changing Canadian law. Amazing that the Canadian government admits that this was false the day they sign it.

Another signatory? Why, New Zealand, of course. Last year, New Zealand (which already recently changed its copyright laws) said that it didn’t foresee any changes to copyright law because of ACTA. And yet… now the New Zealand government admits that changes will be needed to local copyright law before the treaty is ratified.

Singapore, Australia, South Korea, Japan (of course) and Morocco also all signed on. Australia’s and New Zealand’s signings don’t mean quite as much, as their legislatures need to ratify the agreement (the part the US is trying to skip).

Not surprisingly, the RIAA put out a ridiculous statement “saluting” the “will” of ACTA negotiators to complete ACTA. Yeah. The will to continue to hide the agreement from public scrutiny until it was “done” and no changes were allowed? The “will” to pretend that it’s an “executive agreement” rather than a treaty, as per the Constitution? The “will” to insist that ACTA is consistent with domestic laws when it’s not? Sorry. That’s not worth saluting. That’s worth not being allowed to participate in these kinds of negotiations any more.

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Comments on “As Countries Sign ACTA, Many Finally Admit Their Copyright Laws Will Need To Change”

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48 Comments
Josh in CharlotteNC (profile) says:

Re: Re:

If it’s even remembered, I’m going for “ineffective.” Maybe “useless” or “pointless.” How about “impotent.” Yeah, that’s it. “Impotent.”

All the lobbyists, all the time and negotiating, all the influence and goodwill used, it’s all a complete waste.

ACTA won’t solve “the problem.” It won’t dent or slow down piracy. It won’t make the entertainment industry even a cent more money.

Anonymous Coward says:

Simple question, Mike. Stop dodging it: Why do you believe that “piracy is not OK”?

Don’t wait for others to answer. Don’t pretend like you don’t see this post. I’ve been asking you this for months–probably a year–yet never once have you answered the question.

Why do you believe that “piracy is not OK”? Explain to us exactly why “piracy is not OK.”

No dodging. No weasel words. A simple answer for a simple question.

Jeffrey Nonken (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

“Insanity: doing the same thing in hoping for a different result.”

So let’s say — hypothetically — that I want to shut somebody up. So I hit him over the head with a baseball bat. Because in this hypothesis I’m an angry, violent person (in real life I’m a nice guy).

So as a result this victim starts screaming.

Well, obviously that wasn’t the result I wanted. So I hit him over the head again.

According to the misquote you just misquoted, hitting him over the head a second time and expecting it to shut him up is insane, because the first time he actually got louder. And yet, I think most people understand that repeated blows will actually have a cumulative effect. Eventually the guy will be silent.

How does that work? Are we all insane?

Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Maybe he feels you shouldn’t take from those who wish not to be taken from. Maybe he has some moral compass…unlike the IPtards that think everyone should pay them even though they never copied a thing, or would rather trample inherent rights of a person to sustain a failing business model, to ruin a kids life because he shared what he loved with his friends, assumes paying customers are criminals. Of course, Mike isn’t here talking up the morals of piracy (which is an opinion to which anyone can take sides depending on their moral compass) he is here debating and discussing the economic realities of the content industry and the IP-lovers insistence that piracy is a problem. Or is piracy a window into the solution, a reason to rethink their strategy, a reason to evaluate their business model and improve.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Simple question Coward:

Do you believe that the damage that enforcement does to lawful activities is OK?

If you’re talking about discussion boards being taken down along with a website full of infringing content, I have no problem with that at all. Adding a discussion forum to a site that offers infringing content doesn’t immunize it from being seized. Not any more than a porn shop that offers both kiddie porn and that protected by the First Amendment. That place would be seized and boarded up in a second.

A Monkey with Atitude (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

GEE cant have a conversation with out “Kiddie Porn”… Yet you want to engage in meaningful debate… oh wait, no you don’t you just want to trumpet you spent a lot of money to get a President of the USA to try and go around the Constitutional Mandate of Congressional Approval for a Treaty to make your delusion of how to stop your failing business legal. I applaud that you did what the Buggy Whip Companies could not, but then again they had morals you I am coming to the conclusion that anyone in the record business or Lawyers do not, along with any idea how real business works (beside lobby for laws that are neither legal/moral/or helpful)… instead of Boycott Wall Street we need to point them at the Record Company Fat Cats that are using the Money to try and screw them and their kids for a sense that they are entitled to even more money because they are a middleman and natural law says middlemen should be paid billions for doing nothing but lobby for more laws…

and FYI sunshine before you point it out the USTR works for the Executive Branch, and therefore the President…

/rant

Any Mouse (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Have you ever actually read this blog? Seriously. Go back and read on all the things you’ve posted on. This is the single most blind, ignorant, TROLLISH comment I’ve seen in at least a week. Your failure to read and comprehend the material in front of your face is your problem, not his.

Yes, this is a repost. Read the damn blog before vilifying the material within.

Anonymous Coward says:

Mr. Love and I disagree on the point that ACTA will drive national laws to abrogate sovereign immunity. In the US it most certainly does not abrogate 28 USC 1498 nor the provisions in the Foreign Assistance Act, nor does it abrogate state sovereign immunity as articulated in Atascadero, Florida Prepaid, etc. since other legal measures under US law may be relied upon in instances where the infringer is a state or a state actor.

Anonymous Coward says:

Smoke and mirrors

Unless/Until the US Senate ratifies this thing, it is a moot point regardless of what the Administration thinks or tries to twist on this topic. All one has to do is look at how effective Kyoto was/is and you will see that it is impotent out of the gate.

Simply a document that describes how some small minds think the world should be and what color the trees are when they look up using their rosy colored glasses…

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Smoke and mirrors

IIRC, Kyoto still hasn’t been ratified by the Senate. So they don’t legally have to abide by it, technically. And yet Mike is the one called a weasel.

Exactly. As with Kyoto, unless the Senate ratifies ACTA, it is non-enforceable and can and will be simply ignored.

The only real “teeth” this things has might be as a template to get other governments to change their laws in accordance with the provisions of this “wink & nod” idiocy – as you can already see, Canada is recognizing that they would need to make significant changes to come into “compliance” with this and are already acting like they need to do so because they signed it…

Like Kyoto, everyone else not signing it or not working to change their laws “quickly enough” will be beaten liberally over the head by the US State Department while at the same time, US companies would simply ignore it.

What a sad farce…

Someantimalwareguy (profile) says:

Re: Re:

And I have an issue with a grammar Nazi that doesn’t even understand the language he/she/it is criticizing. I suggest searching Meriam-Webster the next time you need help with proper tense, spelling, and meaning:

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dive

Past tense of “Dive” is “Dove”. Though spelled the same way as the bird, it is pronounced differently and that is the key to its meaning…

Jeffrey Nonken (profile) says:

Re: Re:

What’s the past tense of “dive”, then?

I occasionally indulge myself in being a grammar, spelling, or punctuation Nazi myself. Usually I grit my teeth and go on with my life, but once in a while I succumb. Especially if it’s in an article and not, say, in a comment. But when I do, I usually make sure that I actually know what I’m talking about.

For example, I looked this up before I posted this comment:

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/dive

P.S. Sorry if I ruffled your feathers.

Jamie (profile) says:

As a New Zealander, I’m glad that there will be some review and public consultation before the treaty is ratified. This at least gives us a chance to tell the government why this “trade agreement” is simply a money-grab by the big multi-nationals.

Who am I kidding? Our government has a history of ignoring what the people say. I don’t expect this to be any different.

Chargone (profile) says:

Re: Re:

see, i figure, under Labour, we’d have actually heard about this directly and there would have been some debate… after which they most likely still would have ignored it and signed the bloody stupid thing, unless facing riots and large scale protests and the like.

National just hides it… that way when it’s already on teh books and labour gets in and is forced to enforce it, they can start using it as an attack option. no one ever remembers who signed things like this in the first place.

side effect of National’s general policy being ‘screw the country, we get money!’ and not having a damn clue beyond that.

do we have a functional pirate party? ’cause if we do i’m totaly voting for them. (or maybe the progressives, if they’re still functional, i guess….)

both major parties have this … psychotic… obsession with free trade deals, particularly with the US, compleatly missing the fact that free trade is only mutually benificial if both parties are about the same size economically and have little or no overlap in what they produce. otherwise it just locks the little guy into a downward spiral by make it harder and harder to establish anything new because it must compete with established imports right off the bat.

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