Colombia's SOPA Struck Down, But For Procedural Reasons

from the better-than-nothing dept

Back in April last year, we wrote about Colombia’s own SOPA, the “Ley Lleras 2” copyright bill (it’s version 2, because an earlier attempt to pass it failed.) This was rushed through by the Colombian government using an emergency procedure so as to have it ready as a grovelling welcome gift when President Obama came calling shortly afterwards.

A challenge was mounted, and the Constitutional Court has now returned its verdict. The good news: the law has been struck down. The not-so-good news: it’s for procedural reasons, as infojustice explains:

the Court declared the unconstitutionality of the entire law due to procedural irregularities incurred in Congress because the law was processed in the Second Commission of Congress, like an international treaty, but not as the internal implementation of an intellectual property law which the process should have been carried out in the First Commission. Furthermore, the 1520 Act was processed as an ordinary law and not as a statutory law.

Obviously, it would have been better had the court struck down the law due to the numerous problems with its measures, but as Sean Flynn points out:

The Court’s action provides the opportunity for Colombia to revisit these issues and produce a more balanced outcome for Colombia’s citizens and businesses.

So even if the law is by no means dead, this latest decision does at least mean that civil groups have another chance to ask for a full and fair discussion of the measures and their impact on Colombian society. Let’s hope their government listens this time.

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Comments on “Colombia's SOPA Struck Down, But For Procedural Reasons”

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That One Guy (profile) says:

Somehow I get the strangest feeling that there will be a whole lot of ‘we will take that under advisement’ a good number of ‘donations’ made, and the thing will probably end right back on the books, with nary a change made.

After all, if they were willing to trample all of the citizens’ wishes and right the first time, I doubt they’ll hesitate doing so this go around either.

Anonymous Coward says:

First Pass

The court had no reason to even look at the contents of the bill, since the procedure was so clearly aberrant. Further, had they struck it down on reasons drawn from the bill itself, it would have legitimized the process by which it was signed, which would be far worse.

The bill can still be reviewed, even if it does get through the process again, and then rejected on its own merits. There is no bad news here.

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