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ACTAWatch.org: A New Site on Everything ACTA

With the next round of the ACTA negotiations scheduled to begin tomorrow in Tokyo, I am pleased to launch a new site that aggregates much of the analysis and publicly available materials on the draft agreement. ACTAWatch.org includes the latest leaked text, links to official and leaked documents, country-specific discussion, analysis, and ACTA scholarship.  There are also links to other sources, a running twitter feed, and a collection of ACTA videos.  I’d like the site to be as comprehensive as possible, so suggestions for improvement and missing content is certainly welcome.

27 Comments

  1. well for one…
    …an rss feed would be nice.

  2. Quick question….
    … in our case (Canada), would ACTA need to go through a parliament vote, or can the government just sign it by themselves?

    Nap.

  3. Thank goodness there’s a photo of Dr. Geist on the new site. I had almost forgotten what he looks like.


  4. @Degen: That photo has a “per view” license. Now that you confessed to have seen it, you owe $20 to Mr. Geist.

    Nap. ūüôā

  5. Actually, I believe I already paid for that photo with the tax money that went to the Canada Research Chair program.

    You did too.

    I’m sure you remember all the fuss Dr. Geist made about the impact on the taxpayer and the educational consumer of the cost for that program. Didn’t he build a whole website to protest it?

  6. Hey, look at that, the new site republishes Geist’s opinions — notably, his post about IP enforcement and dissent – but doesn’t bother to republish the critical comments.

    I suppose that’s very respectful of Dr. Geist not to republish without expliocit permission.

    I hereby give you permission to republish my comments on that posting.

  7. Having a slow afternoon John?
    @Degen – “Hey, look at that, the new site republishes Geist’s opinions — notably, his post about IP enforcement and dissent – but doesn’t bother to republish the critical comments.”

    http://www.copyrightgetitright.ca/ … Hmm, I don’t see any way to post critical comments there either. How strange?

    @Degen – “Thank goodness there’s a photo of Dr. Geist on the new site. I had almost forgotten what he looks like.”

    I think he kind of looks like Billy Crystal ūüėČ

  8. actra site
    i should look to see if any of my incoherant vids made it there.. …the new site that is.

    with both food and the web under dracoian pressure stateside and the news being on the gays in nthe navy, i should REALLY start turning over other rocks thou…
    packrat


  9. @Degen: “Actually, I believe I already paid for that photo with the tax money that went to the Canada Research Chair program. You did too.”

    And I don’t regret a penny. It’s way better spent than paying police and justice to go through 10,000 lawsuits randomly fired by CRIA. Just check what HADOPI is up to in France these days.

    Nap.

  10. Ah, Crockett,

    Actually, I had a remarkably busy afternoon. Cultural sector work is like that. In fact, I worked this evening as well. Par for the course.

    So, you excuse Geist’s cynical critical disengagement on the grounds that Access Copyright does not invite comments on their info site. Wasn’t it you giving me lectures in logic a little while back?

    Good job, professor.

  11. Worse than Acta
    See here:

    http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/1734529/eff-labels-us-copyright-act-censorship

    Works like this: RIAA complains that Michael’s site is “discussing infringing activities” and it gets shut down just based on the complaint, without any judicial review.

    Nap.

  12. Laurel L. Russwurm says:

    wonder why….
    4 out of 11 (now 12) comments by John Degen.

    Perhaps they should have allowed comments on the new Access Copyright Astroturf site.

  13. bubble, bubble …
    @Degen – “So, you excuse Geist’s cynical critical disengagement on the grounds that Access Copyright does not invite comments on their info site.”

    John, I was calling you a kettle black. Sorry you missed it, maestro.

  14. .. toil and trouble.
    And tell me how Geist’s info site on ACTA is conceptually any different that Access Copyright’s site on C-32? You are a big supporter AC but not Geist, yet you label one as cynically disengaged and not the other?

    I think there is a label called hypocrite that you may want to ponder there John.

  15. Pardon for my famosus libellus ..
    OK John, this morning I felt a little bad about the hypocrite comment, there is no need for over the top bashing. On re-reading your post I see your argument is that Geist did not publish any negative comments that were attached to an article from this site to the Acta info site. This is true, yet he also did not publish any positive comments .. actually no comments at all. So in balance, as it is an information site, I do not see a problem with that. I notice all the news articles linked at your site [are you paying copyright fees for those links by the way?] are pro-publisher/industry pieces, so bias seems to be a common principle.

    In all it’s business as usual in the debate. Have a good evening John, don’t work too late.

  16. Crockett,

    It’s even more interesting than you think. I’ve tried a number of times now to post my original comment for the IP protection piece to the new ACTAWatch site. The site still shows zero comments on that posting. No indication that my words are being held by a moderator or admin. Just no words.

    If I were to follow “business as usual in the debate,” I’d now have to write a long posting questioning Geist’s ethics in creating the info site, wondering who his backers are and what he’s really telling people behind the screen of “free” public comment. It couldn’t be that he launched the site quickly to be timely and still has some design issues to work out. No, there must be evil intent, like with those astroturfers at Balanced Copyright.

    Why Is Michael Geist Censoring Comments on His New ACTAWatch Site?

    Try to understand the linking issue as it’s actually related to the educational tariff. It’s not about the act of linking; it’s about the use of the links. These distinctions are important, and not understanding them slants a person’s grasp of the whole issue.

    I don’t hide my bias on copyright. I don’t say things like “Gosh, I’m more supportive of this bill than the Canadian music industry,” while working hard behind the scenes to have the bill gutted of artist-friendliness.

    My position is now what it has always been, openly and honestly. Copyright is an individual right for each and every person on earth. It has tangible value beyond commerce. Removing creator rights within copyright helps no-one on balance, since we are all both creators and users at once. We rob our creator selves to give our user selves things we already have and can protect through other means.

  17. @Degan
    I have yet to see any one here that wants to removes creators rights. C-32 does is make it so that more people can use a work fairly (with emphasis on fairly). It does not by any stretch of the imagination, except for the most paranoid, give people the write to just copy whatever they want for whatever reason they want. All Bill C-32 does it make is to that creators and distributors have complete and total control on how people use their work without any real consideration of the consumer and how they actually use the things creators make. And it’s actually debatable if it actually helps creators at all over what we currently have based on everything I’ve read. ACTA itself isn’t any better.

    Your problem Degan is assuming that everyone here, including Dr. Giest, must be against creators being paid because we don’t agree with you. Fortunately that is as far from the truth as you can get.

  18. @Chris – “I have yet to see any one here that wants to removes creators rights … assuming that everyone here, including Dr. Giest, must be against creators being paid because we don’t agree with you.”

    I, and many others here, consider myself to be extremely supportive of creator rights. I believe artists and creators have been unfairly treated by their corporate representatives and backers. The long running battle for artists to be fully compensated (in the millions) from the Canadian recording industry is on record and the courts.

    The distribution and marketing landscape has changed. Technology does not stand still, neither business practices or models. Artists and creators can now have GREATER RENUMERATION for their works by embracing new models. I fail to see how advocating for this can be considered anything but pro-artist.

    @Degen “It’s even more interesting than you think. I’ve tried a number of times now to post my original comment for the IP protection piece to the new ACTAWatch site.”

    Neither can I post anything to the site [ And I said many nice things ūüėČ ] so it is not content filtering. It seems to be kept as an information site only. As I pointed out your info site has no way to leave comments either. So I continue to see no problem with that. It would be better though, if possible, to remove the comment mechanism on Geist’s site rather than just disable it.

  19. Michael Geist says:

    @Degen
    I was unaware of the problem posting comments on the ACTAWatch site. I’ve asked my web person to investigate and fix.

    MG

  20. Thanks MIchael,

    You might also want to tell your defenders here they can stand down from excusing the website’s flaws. That’s just embarrassing.

  21. @Degen “You might also want to tell your defenders here they can stand down from excusing the website’s flaws. That’s just embarrassing.”

    John, you certainly have a strange thought process when someone who concedes to one of your points causes embarrassment. Now that ACTAWatch.org allows comments and debate will copyrightgetitright.ca be doing the same or possibly be satisfied with ‘critical disengagement’.

  22. Crockett,

    a) I don’t speak for copyrightgetitright. I signed on over there, and feel well represented, but I don’t run that website. Presumably, Dr. Geist does run his.

    b) I still cannot post a comment at ACTAWatch, despite the invitation to comment and discuss. If it’s an info-only site, maybe it should be promoted as such.

  23. Vicissitude when convenient.
    John, you were quite upset that you could not post comments on the actawatch.org website, which now turns out is due to a technical oversight of the web developer, but you do not seem concerned that the Access copyright [of whom board meetings you attend so I assume you are a member?] does not allow comments on their copyrightgetitright.ca info site AT ALL?

    You complained that Micheal Geist, by not attaching your former posts to the new site, or enabling comments for further debate, was participating in ‘critical disengagement’ …

    @MG – “Many people have written to note that Access Copyright, represented by Barry Sookman, filed a response to the many objections raised with the Copyright Board. Access Copyright argues that only educational institutions qualify as objectors in the proceeding.”

    Anyone who does not see the irony here, step to the back of the class.

  24. I wish I knew what you were talking about. I am NOT an Access Copyright board member, nor do I care whether or not they accept comments on their info site. The fact remains, a site hosted by Michael Geist, purporting to accept comments and invite dialogue does neither. Oh well.

    And who cares if Barry Sookman represents AC? He’s an IP lawyer, and they wanted to hire one. Are we so far down the rabbit-hole now that we don’t want the various parties in this legal debate to be represented? That’s sort of why CIPPIC exists, no?

    I think the objection is valid. The tariff is intended to be paid for by educational institutions. They should be the legal objectors. If they pass a cost on to students or the parents of students then really those folks should be objecting to the educational institutions, not to AC.

    Makes perfect sense to me.

  25. John I thought I remembered you saying you attended some of AC’s board meetings, that’s why I put a ? on my assumption, thanks for clearing that up.

    The copyright board is the one making the decisions in regards to the tariff, not the educational institutes. Since this ruling effects students and teachers, maybe even more so than the schools, it makes perfect sense to me that their concerns and views should be heard by the deciding body.

  26. @degen
    “My position is now what it has always been, openly and honestly. Copyright is an individual right for each and every person on earth. It has tangible value beyond commerce. Removing creator rights within copyright helps no-one on balance, since we are all both creators and users at once. We rob our creator selves to give our user selves things we already have and can protect through other means.”
    But what do you mean, “removing creator rights within copyright helps no-one on balance”? you didn’t establish the legitimacy of those rights. Nor did you establish what value you were talking about.
    And what do you mean by “robbing our creator selves to give to our user selves”?
    We all contribute to the culture of our society, and we all draw programming from said culture. Close?
    But that just means that an individual is inherently unoriginal and thus can only ever partially own his/her ideas.

  27. @degen
    rereading my post makes me sound like a concern troll.
    My point is, I don’t fully understand your position, where you’re coming from on this.

    Personally, I know that science (sociology mostly, also a little psych on the side)
    has determined that people are programmed by a combination of culture and social structure
    (as well as biology, but that’s a much longer spiel..point is, we don’t spring up out of thin air) and that those things that make us in our entirety are created by others. Thus we as humans are made of the actions and ideas of others, in a massive chain leading back to the primordial soup.
    How this comes around to copyright: a creator cannot truly be original, and thus can only ever own part of his/her work. The rest belongs to the rest of us and makes any such monopoly unethical. And by ethical, I mean running counter to the common good.
    The individual sells the first generation of his/her creation, then ever after others can improve upon the work.