by Mike Masnick
Mon, Jan 19th 2009 4:36pm
One of the most problematic aspects of the negotiations around ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, is how the entire process has been shrouded in secrecy. Those involved in the process try to brush off this complaint by saying something along the lines of "but we always negotiate treaties this way!" but that's hardly a good reason to do so -- especially when the impact of ACTA could be wide ranging. Some of the documents that have leaked out from the process suggest a pretty massive shift in copyright law could be pushed through via ACTA. You would think that it would make sense for such a process to be done in public. In fact, according to some, this level of secrecy it may be illegal in Europe. The Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) has filed a complaint in Europe, noting that the secrecy goes against EU regulations. The group is demanding either that the documents involved in the negotiations be made public... or that the EU withdraw from the negotiations (which, of course, won't happen).
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