The EU Commission Tries To Defend ACTA And Fails Miserably

from the shocking dept

We've already discussed the many, many concerns that people have that ACTA will go against current US law (though, it appears that negotiators have put in enough weasel words that they can pretend it doesn't until a later date when the laws need to be updated). It seems that something similar is happening in Europe. A bunch of academics had written a letter to the EU Commission earlier this year, pointing out the many, many (sometimes serious) conflicts with EU law and the final draft of ACTA. Recently, the EU Commission responded (pdf). However, as pointed out by Slashdot, an analysis of the response by Ante Wessels shows that The EU Commission appears to lack basic reading skills.

Basically, as with the US analysis, the issue is that ACTA is dreadfully drafted, in such a way that many parts are vague or overly broad. This allows ACTA supporters to claim that there are ways to work around anything that people complain about -- but in this case, part of the complaints was that the broadness and vagueness meant that it went beyond current EU law. The EU's response was more or less to repeat the lie that the broad and vague definitions would mean countries could do their own thing and remain in compliance.

Basically, it looks like ACTA supporters on both sides of the Atlantic are now using this kind of strategy. When people confront you on something specific, point to the vague and broad language and pretend that the specific issues are solved by that. When people point to the problems with broad and vague language, insist that there's nothing to worry about. What a debacle.
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Filed Under: acta, eu


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  1. icon
    Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), 6 May 2011 @ 1:46am

    If you are a thoughtful citizen who wants sensible IP laws that protect artists and innovators while still preserving a robust public domain

    I AM a thoughtful citizen who wants sensible IP laws. The IP laws haven't been within driving distance of sensible for many years and the public domain is steadily being eroded by increasingly lengthy copyright terms that mean fewer things enter the public domain and more and more broad interpretations that allow corporations to gobble up and re-lock up things already in the public domain. I don't have a problem with someone having a somewhat better chance to be paid for something they did, I do have a problem with someone else who did nothing expecting to still be paid for it 70 years after they are dead.

    So yes, anything that has even the chance of stretching an already ludicrous situation further bothers me very much. As does the US politicians using secret backroom deals, bullying and bribery to get their way with other governments and trample over the rights of people in other countries as well as its own in order to protect the corporations that pay them most.

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