Internet’s Future: ACTA – Out of Crocodile’s Mouth into a Lion’s

Over the recent months, the internet was in chaos, as netizens all around the world opposed SOPA/PIPA, the bill that would give the US government unprecedented authority to shut down websites without prior notice if the site is “suspected” of conducting a copyright infringement. For reasons explained in the link, SOPA/PIPA are counterproductive and will actually allow for lots of rule-abusing from the people who have power.

Now, with the combined forces of netizens and corporations like Google, WordPress, Wikipedia and many more, SOPA/PIPA were delayed. They’re not dead yet, but it is not that unsafe to assume that this is our victory — at least for now.

However, the recent chaos on SOPA/PIPA reveals a greater and darker secret held by the government… Not just USA, but worldwide. This is no more a thing to made fun of. The fight is not over. Not just for the internet, but also for privacy and freedom of expression.

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ACTA: What is it?
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ACTA is a proposed multi-national agreement for the purpose of establishing international standards on intellectual property rights enforcement. Disguised under the name Anti-Counterfeiting Trading Agreement, ACTA is by no means a trading agreement. It is a law that would violate privacy and civil rights.

ACTA was first developed by USA and Japan in 2006, and since then, it has been developed in secret, without any publication whatsoever. As of 2011, Australia, Canada, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, and South Korea had also signed the treaty. The European Union also said that they would sign in the future.

ACTA first came to public attention in 2008 after a discussion paper was uploaded to Wikileaks. After more leaks in 2009 and 2010 and denied requests for disclosure by groups such as Doctors without BordersIP Justice, the Canadian Library Association, and the Consumers Union of Japan, the negotiating parties published an official version of the then current draft on 20 April 2010. In June 2010, a conference with “over 90 academics, practitioners and public interest organizations from six continents”concluded “that the terms of the publicly released draft of ACTA threaten numerous public interests, including every concern specifically disclaimed by negotiators.” A group of 75+ law professors signed a letter to President Obama demanding that ACTA be halted and changed.

What else we can say? The representatives signing the treaty were not democratically elected. They do not represent the people, but they are deciding the laws behind our backs.

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What Does ACTA do?
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Despite various groups’ opposition to ACTA as explained above, ACTA wasn’t that known to commoners. Its public awareness rose sharply after Megauploads were closed down, as this information spread quickly:

Link. And the video mentioned in the said link: Click here.

And, the important one:

Copyright belongs to laquadrature.net. You can click to enlarge the image.

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What Can We Do about ACTA?
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  1. Contact Your Elected Representatives.
    Contacting your Elected Representatives is the most useful thing you can do right now, and until the final vote in the European Parliament. You can find detailed information how to do this in laquadrature’s page. Please note that calls are more effective than petitions. Show them our opposition!
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  2. Vote NO to ACTA
    We must make ourselves heard to the governments. Vote NO against ACTA, which you can do in the following sites: Accessnow, Whitehouse.gov, and maybe other sites which I haven’t covered. The fact that Whitehouse.gov is making the petition itself means we have hopes — as long as we take action!
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  3. Spread the Awareness
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If ACTA passes, it may not be exaggerating that the world might become a dystopian society. Let’s show the world and the governments, that this world is not meant for oppressors!
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Let’s unite, netizens!
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More about ACTA
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5 thoughts on “Internet’s Future: ACTA – Out of Crocodile’s Mouth into a Lion’s

  1. Damn..

    I’m not trolling or what.. This is the best response I can give now..
    For now, I’ve sign the petition (forgot the link, I’ll search it) and just hope that our children can still taste the wonders of internet without afraid being captured and go to jail..

    Seriously..

    • Do not give up hope yet.

      If it is not ourselves, who is going to fight for our liberty?

      There is no effort that end in vain, they contribute to something. Let’s just do what we can do, do our best, and hope.

  2. well, i hope ANNONYMOUS act immediately, the US government really has lost their mind…

    me right now only sign petition in 1 place, but i’ll try to spread wings and sign EVERY petition that say no to ACTA out there..

    this fight is not over, i cannot agree more…

    lets not just watch the change happens guys, lets BE THE CHANGE 🙂

  3. We have hope IF we really try.

    How can I say this?
    – First, SOPA/PIPA was delayed AFTER governments have seen the mass protests done by many bodies. Lamar also implied that the SOPA bill will most likely be changed — if not dead.
    – Second: in the past, European Union and White House refused to give details about the ACTA documents. But after several groups and law-knowledgeable people pushed down, they actually released the draft and held a conference.

    What do these imply?

    Our governments might have much more power than us, but together — in righteousness — we CAN and WILL push them, and they can’t defend shamelessly forever under constant and intense pressures.

    That’s why, keep your hopes high and fight. For the internet.

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