thewayne: (Default)
Official White House Response to Investigate Chris Dodd and the MPAA for bribery after he publicly admited to bribing politicans to pass legislation.
Why We Can't Comment

Thank you for signing this petition. We appreciate your participation in the We the People platform on Whitehouse.gov. However, consistent with the We the People Terms of Participation and our responses to similar petitions in the past, the White House declines to comment on this petition because it requests a specific law enforcement action.


Dodd infamously went on Fox News after SOPA/PIPA died and said, "Those who count on quote 'Hollywood' for support need to understand that this industry is watching very carefully who's going to stand up for them when their job is at stake. Don't ask me to write a check for you when you think your job is at risk and then don't pay any attention to me when my job is at stake."

Chris Dodd served in the U.S. Senate for 30 years and is now the head of the MPAA.

Isn't that precious? And it's absolutely no surprise on two counts. First, the Justice Department is loaded with former Hollywood attorneys from the MPAA, so they'd have some difficulty sorting out conflicts of interest, if they wanted to bother with that. Second, by not publically calling for a 'specific law enforcement action', if it falls off of law enforcement's radar and nothing happens, everybody's happy.

TechDirt's comments: http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120131/23021017604/white-house-says-it-cant-comment-possible-chris-dodd-investigation.shtml

https://wwws.whitehouse.gov/petitions/!/response/why-we-cant-comment

http://politics.slashdot.org/story/12/02/01/0218206/white-house-refuses-to-comment-on-petition-to-investigate-chris-dodd
thewayne: (Default)
The Slovenian ambassador regrets signing it.

"Slovenia's ambassador to Japan, Helena Drnovek Zorko, writes: 'I signed ACTA out of civic carelessness, because I did not pay enough attention. Quite simply, I did not clearly connect the agreement I had been instructed to sign with the agreement that, according to my own civic conviction, limits and withholds the freedom of engagement on the largest and most significant network in human history, and thus limits particularly the future of our children.'"

http://politics.slashdot.org/story/12/02/02/1625236/slovenian-ambassador-regrets-signing-acta-agreement


And Poland suspends ratification.

"Poland has suspended its ratification process for ACTA, throwing the copyright crackdown into doubt for the whole European Union. ACTA is being handled as a 'mixed agreement' in the EU due to its criminalization clauses, so if a single EU member state (such as Poland) fails to ratify it, it is null and void across the entire union. If that were to happen, at least six of the remaining international signatories would have to ratify ACTA for it to apply anywhere in the world. Outside the EU, only eight countries — including the U.S. — have signed."

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/12/02/03/1935257/actas-eu-future-in-doubt-as-poland-suspends-ratification
thewayne: (Default)
On Thursday, 22 countries signed the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement in Tokyo, it was largely written by Hollywood.

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/12/01/26/1746202/acta-signed-by-22-eu-countries

Shortly after the signing, the EU parliamentary chief who was in charge of this project resigned. ""I want to denounce in the strongest possible manner the entire process that led to the signature of this agreement: no inclusion of civil society organisations, a lack of transparency from the start of the negotiations, repeated postponing of the signature of the text without an explanation being ever given, exclusion of the EU Parliament's demands that were expressed on several occasions in our assembly."

"As rapporteur of this text, I have faced never-before-seen manoeuvres from the right wing of this Parliament to impose a rushed calendar before public opinion could be alerted, thus depriving the Parliament of its right to expression and of the tools at its disposal to convey citizens' legitimate demands."

"Everyone knows the ACTA agreement is problematic, whether it is its impact on civil liberties, the way it makes Internet access providers liable, its consequences on generic drugs manufacturing, or how little protection it gives to our geographical indications."

"This agreement might have major consequences on citizens' lives, and still, everything is being done to prevent the European Parliament from having its say in this matter. That is why today, as I release this report for which I was in charge, I want to send a strong signal and alert the public opinion about this unacceptable situation. I will not take part in this mascarade."


http://yro.slashdot.org/story/12/01/27/026249/eu-acta-chief-resigns


So Hollywood is going to get SOPA one way or another. Now the entire world has the best government that money can buy.
thewayne: (Default)
Senator Wyden says the issue is that if the agreement requires a change in U.S. law, then the Executive Branch doesn't have the authority to enter a binding international agreement! It'll be interesting to see how this plays out. I hope it'll crash and burn, but I doubt Hollywood will let that happen.

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/11/10/13/1619256/us-senator-wyden-raises-constitutional-questions-about-acta
thewayne: (Cyranose)
If you have a business with extensive intellectual property holdings, the TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement) is probably a great treaty for you. But just like ACTA, it's being negotiated pretty much in total secrecy. And just like ACTA, it's been leaked.

Some of the provisions would make the U.S. patent (USPTO) a rubber-stamp for applications (which sucks because Congress is actually looking at making some significant improvements there), ISP's would become extensions of Hollywood when it comes to copyright enforcement, parallel import would be banned (no more gray market goods), criminal enforcement would be REQUIRED for DRM circumvention(!). I'm sure there's more lovely stuff in it.

The Techdirt article also has links to more info at the EFF with more details and a list of all Congresscritters in both the House and Senate so you can easily contact them and express displeasure.

I just wish they would try to negotiate this in the open. There's no reason for this to be secret, except for the fact that Hollywood wants to be able to totally side-step the normal method for creating laws and gain a fait accompli over everyone.

Now, as if this isn't bad enough, they want a VERY fast approval: they want it all to be wrapped up in November OF THIS YEAR.

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20110311/00104713434/us-proposals-secret-tpp-son-acta-treaty-leaked-chock-full-awful-ideas.shtml

https://secure.eff.org/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=471

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/11/03/11/2134224/Son-of-ACTA-Worse-Than-Original


[EDITED 15-JUNE-2013 TO ADD TOR TAG]
thewayne: (Default)
"With the news that the EU Parliament is not happy with ACTA and threatening to reject it, now comes the news ... that the Mexican Senate has voted unanimously to withdraw from ACTA negotiations. ... The resolution points out that access to information is a key point in helping to build a modern, information-based nation, and ACTA is about removing access to information and knowledge. They're not against ACTA entirely, but think that the process needs to be a lot more open and involve a lot more stakeholders, and say they won't agree to ACTA unless the process includes a much larger group in the discussions"...

GO MEXICO! Much power to them!

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20101005/17320811304/mexican-senate-unanimously-votes-to-remove-mexico-from-acta-negotations.shtml

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/10/06/2321203/Mexican-Senate-Votes-To-Drop-Out-of-ACTA

Meanwhile...

"The United States is caving on the internet section of a proposed international intellectual-property treaty, meaning its one-time quest to globally dictate draconian copyright rules has come to an abrupt halt."

Somehow I don't think the US??AA will take that stuff out without a fight.

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/10/act-internet-freedom/


It's heartening to see some countries noticing that ACTA is far more insidious than the US??AA would like you to know/believe.
thewayne: (Default)
"Given the history of ACTA leaks, to no one's surprise, the latest version of the draft agreement (PDF) was leaked last night on KEI's website. The new version — which reflects changes made during an intense week of negotiations last month in Washington — shows a draft agreement that is much closer to becoming reality. Perhaps the most important story of the latest draft is how the countries are close to agreement on the Internet enforcement chapter. In the face of opposition, the US has dropped its demands on secondary liability for ISPs but is still holding out hope of establishing a super-DMCA with digital lock rules that go beyond the WIPO Internet treaties and were even rejected by US courts."

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/09/06/148212/ACTA-Text-Leaks-US-Caves-On-ISPs-Seeks-Super-DMCA

"European Parliament today adopted Written Declaration 12/2010 which basically tells the Commission to all but drop the negotiations. From the article: 'Citizens from all around Europe helped to raise awareness about ACTA among Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) by collecting, one by one, more than 369 [of the MEPs'] signatures. With Written Declaration 12/20103, the European Parliament as a whole takes a firm position to oppose the un-democratic process of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), and its content harmful to fundamental freedoms and the Internet ecosystem.'"

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/09/08/1510255/European-Parliament-All-But-Rejects-ACTA
thewayne: (Default)
There, you can now legally break DRM if you are not violating copyright! So theoretically you could break the encryption on DRM or ebooks for the purpose of backup or using them on other devices. Apparently they also explicitly ban the use of DRM on public domain works!

http://www.boingboing.net/2010/07/10/brazils-copyright-la.html

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/07/11/2127246/Brazil-Forbids-DRM-On-the-Public-Domain
thewayne: (Default)
Fed up with the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), India hopes to whip up an anti-ACTA chutney so spicy that negotiators have no choice but to purge every trace of the loathed agreement from their systems.

Though countries like Morocco are involved, rich countries have driven the ACTA process. The World Trade Organization—ignored. The World Intellectual Property Organization—bypassed. Instead of using the very fora that they played such a role in establishing, countries like the US, EU, Canada, Japan, and Australia formed a coalition of the willing. ACTA has been negotiated in secret, though the recently released negotiating draft text envisions a permanent secretariat that will receive new members.

In other words, existing international institutions, where countries like Brazil, China, and India have recently acquired some real power, will be bypassed to create the tough new restrictions in ACTA.


India raising hell, I think, is a good thing. India's objection is not over media anti-piracy and copyright, but over pharmaceuticals. There's some very nasty patent protections that extend even if country X doesn't recognize country Y's patents or have different term limits or such.

But what really ticks me off is the secret negotiating aspect of this treaty, and as the article points out, bypassing WTO and WIPO to institute it. It's like the USA trying to get everyone to sign on to DMCA, but not being very above-board about it. DMCA is now crawling out of the grave in Canada again, so we'll see what happens there. In Canada, currently, if you buy an iPod or Music CD-Rs, you pay an additional tax that supposedly helps reimburse artists for losses due to piracy, but that money never seems to trickle down from the studios for some strange reason.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/06/india-vows-to-sabotage-acta.ars

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/06/02/2157252/India-Attempts-To-Derail-ACTA?art_pos=12
thewayne: (Default)
It's been an interesting few days. First, the full text of the working ACTA treaty is to be released on the 21st. All of the countries attending the conference in New Zealand were in favor of its release, saying that earlier release was premature. It has been leaked massively and those unofficial copies were not at all friendly to personal digital rights. Allegedly the forthcoming release will not include border searches of electronic equipment and USB flash drives, we'll see what it contains soon enough.

http://www.zdnet.co.uk/news/regulation/2010/04/16/acta-copyright-enforcement-treaty-to-go-public-40088663/?tag=mncol;txt

http://politics.slashdot.org/story/10/04/17/0050203/ACTA-Draft-To-Be-Made-Public-Next-Week


There's always fun in ??AA land! The entertainment industry submitted a wish list in response to "Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator's request for comments on the forthcoming "Joint Strategic Plan" for intellectual property enforcement." Included in the list:

"Anti-infringement" software for home computers
Pervasive copyright filtering
Intimidate and propagandize travelers at the border
Bully countries that have tech-friendly policies (such as Canada, the vile den of sinners!)
Federal agents working on Hollywood's clock

Yes, they want armed Federal DOJ and DHS officers protecting Independence Day 2.

http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2010/04/entertainment-industrys-dystopia-future (you might need to scroll down a bit to get to the article text, it displays a lot of white space on my Mac in the latest Firefox)

http://www.tomsguide.com/us/RIAA-MPAA-Illegal-downloads-Torrent,news-6496.html

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/04/17/1211205/Media-Industry-Wants-Mandated-Spyware-and-More?art_pos=28
thewayne: (Default)
"Cory Doctorow is reporting on a leaked copy of the 'internet enforcement' portion of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. He describes it as reading like a 'DMCA-plus' with provisions for third-party liability, digital locks, and 'a duty to technology firms to shut down infringement where they have "actual knowledge" that such is taking place.' For example, this could mean legal responsibility shifting to Apple for customers copying mp3s onto their iPods." Adds an anonymous reader, "Michael Geist points out that the leaks demonstrate that ACTA would create a Global DMCA and move toward a three-strikes-and-you're-out system. While the US has claimed that ACTA won't establish a mandatory three strikes system, it specifically uses three-strikes as its model."

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/02/21/2136238/ACTA-Internet-Chapter-Leaked-mdash-Bad-For-Everyone?art_pos=10

I think it's a little much to say bad for everyone. It's Hollywood's wet dream.
thewayne: (Default)
"Legislators around the world are demanding more information on the secret Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. US Senator Ron Wyden demanded answers in a letter to the USTR (PDF) this week, ACTA arose in the UK House of Commons yesterday, and French Deputy Nicolas Dupont-Aignan raised ACTA questions in the National Assembly late last year. All of this comes on top of earlier efforts from Swedish Member of the European Parliament Jens Holm, as well as New Zealand MP Clare Curran, who has repeatedly raised concerns about ACTA, and NDP MP Charlie Angus, who posed questions about ACTA in the Canadian House of Commons late last year."

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/01/09/0341208/Politicians-Worldwide-Asking-Questions-About-ACTA?art_pos=2

Negotiating an international copyright treaty: not good. I'm very glad to hear that there are some people in power questioning it.
thewayne: (Default)
So what he's saying is the ??AA has told the government, through the ??AA attorneys now working in the Justice Department, that other countries would walk away and they got the ambassador to follow that line.

In other words, "We must screw the public, it's for their own good. Our profit has nothing to do with it."

http://keionline.org/node/706

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/09/12/07/1417209/Ambassador-Claims-ACTA-Secrecy-Necessary?art_pos=3
thewayne: (Default)
Here's the beauty: the MPAA says that if you have a problem with that, you don't like Hollywood.

Well, I guess I don't like Hollywood then.

There are some things that I definitely don't like about the Obama administration, and this is one of them. You can add to that the fact that there are several former RIAA/MPAA attorneys now in the Justice department.

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2009/11/mpaa-acta-letter/

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