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Assessing ACTA: Video of My Talk at the European Parliament

Yesterday I appeared at the European Parliament’s INTA Workshop on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement.  I have written a commissioned report for the committee on ACTA that should be released in a few weeks. In the meantime, my prepared remarks provide a good overview of the main arguments and this video provides a quick ten minute presentation on why ACTA’s harms outweigh its benefits.



  1. Well done. Thank you for standing up and presenting the truth.

  2. thank you
    thorough and specific responses within a compact presentation.

  3. George Taylor says:

    Wow! You really nailed it! 10 out of 10. I see you got warm applause – rather than just polite applause. Clearly you were not the only one there who feels ACTA fails.

    I would so like to know what that moderator had to say. He seemed to be implying something with his remark “Clearly you are not here to demonstrate”. Perhaps he did not approve of the applause you received.

    Congratulations on your hard work, the clarity with with your delivered your message, and its substance.

  4. Very well done.
    It sounded almost like you were getting lectured at the end (“You are not here to demonstrate…”). Any truth to this?

  5. Answered my own question.
    He must have been talking to someone else, offscreen…

    The whole thing can be watched here:

  6. George Taylor says:

    Re: whole thing can be watched here…
    I scanned that video and found Michael’s speech. However, it was translated to German, in spite of the “En” button being pressed. The speech ends at the 15:39:38 mark, and the moderator’s remarks are also translated to German. Not helpful, since I don’t speak that language.

  7. I don’t know what to say, but it was in English for me.

    If you are able to use Windows Media Player directly, you can try loading the following direct stream of the English version:

  8. Thom Huerlimann says:

    Save artists!
    Very good how you deconstruct ACTA from law perspective. But how is it possible that any politician is considering ACTA after all? I mean it does not need much thinking and anyone should come to the conclusion: 1.) The law can not probably be used to safe companies or industries who are in a misery because of their own faults. 2.) The law can not be used to alter market rules in favour of an industry who is not needed any more. 3.) Rather then saving industries and their profits, Artists must be saved from being used by those industries.

  9. Thom Huerlimann says:

    Or something else that should be brought up when discussing ACTA: Entertainment industries claim losses, but they still make more then a fortune, bribing politics and the media, while most artists still get nothing back. They are just greedy.

    You remember they say “we loose 58 billion each year”. Well, where do those numbers come from? They are pure fiction. Fact is that most of those who download, would not buy it even if download would not be possible – for many reasons, first one being that most of the stuff the entertainment industry produces is just trash and not worth any money. And the others who download and share, later go and buy it if they like it. They generate sales. The “losses” its all just a big lie to cover the truth: The music industry is not needed anymore. Artists gain more income when they produce and distribute themselfes. Ask artists. Only the ones in the top charts do really make money, and even those do often not speak up in favour of the industry.

  10. George Taylor says:

    Re: Hmm – wmv link problem
    Hi Hmm,

    Thanks for your efforts. I have discovered the problem. It is a browser problem! Seems that video link is not that friendly to Google Chrome. When I used IE, there was no problem viewing the video at your link in English, but for both Firefox and Google Chrome it is in German. Even worse, in Firefox one cannot seek to different parts of the video.

    Today there is another problem. When viewed in Google Chrome, the text for all comments overruns the page and is impossible to read. In IE, only the second link you posted overruns the boundry. In Firefox it stays within the boundry. In summary, Michael’s web manager needs to review this page in the different browsers and fix his code.
    The short term quick and easy solution would be to simply delete your second post with the new link you provided me.

    Finally, am I the only one who finds these captchas impossible to decode?

  11. George Taylor says:

    All right – thanks to the (first) link to the full version provided by Mr. Hmm, viewed in IE, I was able to review exactly what the moderator had to say after Michael’s speech, He was remonstrating the audience for their applause, which he calls “demonstrating”. He clearly does not approve of it. Wow… To quote exactlty: “Let me very strong on this. You are not here to demonstrate. From now on, I will not allow any demonstration. Those who will infringe this rule will be kindly asked to leave the room.”

  12. David Jansson says:

    The whole workshop in Ubuntu
    How the hell do I watch the whole workshop in ubuntu? The video on the official page refuses to work and my Google-fu fails me to get a rip somewhere.

  13. Don’t you just love fascists?
    The fascist law & order crowd is something, Isn’t it? The man told Michael (Correct?) that he wasn’t there to demonstrate because Michael demonstrated his ability to grasp the issues and speak about them rationally and because he is ‘not’ bowing to the beast of corporatocracy. If Michael had bowed to the corporatocracy, his expertise and education of others about internet technology and law would not have been a problem.

    The man demonstrated that the law & order crowd is about power, not principles, which means that he is ‘not’ demonstrating. Power will declare who is a demonstrator and who isn’t, who is a terrorist and who isn’t, who is a democrat and who isn’t. Michael, and the abused people, the abused 99%, were spit on by this goat, with his dismissive opening statement, and told that they will take what they get whether they like it or not and whether it’s good for them or not.

    The macho fascists, who are just loving this mowing down of the people – sometimes for real and with some among them picnicking during the slaughter and applauding every death (Gaza) – are so far down the path of darkness… They in effect tell we the people that if we want civilized civilization then we can have it – over their dead bodies and through revolution. (They’d act a little differently if they had not takeen our armies, police and security organizations along with our governments.) And because they’re perverted, They will attack us using the excuse that we are undemocratic radical nationalists threatening national security (in Richistan) and freedom (‘their’ capitalism) and fomenting revolution, which is, in effect, by their actions (including their words), the only choice they leave to the abused people. We mustn’t commit the mortal sin of self-defence, to borrow a phrase from Noam Chomsky.

    The rabble thanks you Michael Geist for your effort to approach this matter in a constructive and fair manner and we recognize (genuinely) your expertise and past positive contribution to the subject of internet technology and law through which we, with and without expertise in these matters, have only gained a better understand of them.

  14. Ahh
    Thanks George Taylor. I should have read the comments before posting. I really wouldn’t say that what I said needs much alteration however.

  15. Doug Webb says:

    Now that they’ve been elected the same way…
    will Putin and Harper be forging closer ties?

  16. Thank you, Mr. Geist, for doing such an exceptional job speaking on this issue.

    We appreciate it. 🙂

  17. Bitch of Freedom says:

    two questions for the sake of transparency
    two questions for the sake of transparency:

    1. who paid your trip to Brussels?
    2. why is the report not published and can you explain why you cooperated in this while criticizing ACTA because of its secret negotiations?