Committees / News / Video

The Trouble With ACTA: My Analysis of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement

Earlier this year, I appeared at the European Parliament’s INTA Committee Workshop on ACTA where I reached the following conclusion:

This report concludes that ACTA’s harm greatly exceeds its potential benefits. Given ACTA’s corrosive effect on transparency in international negotiations, the damage to international intellectual property institutions, the exclusion of the majority of the developing world from the ambit of the agreement, the potentially dangerous substantive provisions, and the uncertain benefits in countering counterfeiting, there are ample reasons for the public and politicians to reject the agreement in its current form.  In doing so, governments would help restore confidence in the global intellectual property system and open the door to a new round of negotiations premised on transparency, inclusion, and evidence-based policy-making.

While I previously posted my opening remarks and a video of comments, I was unable to post the full report until granted approval by the European Parliament INTA Committee (the Dutch government issued a response to my comments). That report is now available for download and is part of a full report on the workshop that includes all the background reports and a summary of the workshop discussion. My analysis follows the same format as the comments but offers more detailed analysis and discussion.


  1. Larry R. says:

    It’s IMAGINARY property people.

  2. The Problem with ACTA
    It’s one sided; there’s no public debate.

  3. The Name Game says:

    Let’s play the name game – remix soundbites of politicians talking about “IP” and replace it with “Imaginary Property”. Replace the word “Rights” with “Monopoly” for extra effect.

  4. Copyright
    Next Monday and Tuesday, report and third reading of C-11

  5. Finally we hear some reality.
    Geist is my primary source of fair copyright info! America should stop interfering with our internet. The internet is ours, you don’t censor it, you let it be, and let us be! LondonRemoval

  6. link
    I would really like to read your analysis, but it is on your local desktop.

  7. ACTA wasn’t written in secret or without transparency. Inital discussions were announced way back in 2007 and a draft of ACTA was released while negotiations were still going on. Intellectual property is in no way “imaginary property” and needs to be protected.

  8. LOL

    Yes Emily an initial draft was released…..
    to industry insiders…..
    who signed an NDA first.

    Very transparent!

    It would appear that some peoples recollections are also imaginary. Though for the record I prefer the term Intellectual Monopoly, It is more honest about what this particular property is, and reminds us all that we are all having to give something up in order for it to exist. Therefore we need to be sure the societal price of the monopoly is fair

  9. Emily
    Well, the phrase “intellectual property” typically means
    any one or more of concepts of trademark, copyrights,
    or patents, all of which are products of the human
    imagination, so I think “imaginary property” works.

    I’m not sure which of the above you are promoting, but
    speaking for myelf, my only expectation of a right to
    restrict access and use of information pertaining to me
    (including authored by me) comes from my right to privacy,
    but I’m not comfortable calling that property. It’s
    not transferable. And lying, like copying, is not theft.

    FWIW, I believe in “privacy” and “intellectual honesty” but
    absolutely not “intellectual property”.

    I see the Internet as a rejection of the old commercial
    networks, so the very idea is retrograde. It’s a dead end.
    We had it. We (I) didn’t want it.

    If people succeed in commercializing it and making every
    part of it property, so be it, but if that happens,
    history seems to me to suggest we’ll all move on to
    greener pastures until they’re equally ruined, and so on.

    Libraries have always been the height of civilization.

    The Internet is the best yet.

    Unfortunately there are still people who for some reason
    seem to hate the world enough to burn libraries.

    I don’t expect to ever understand the perspective, but
    to anyone who wants to bring property back to the Internet,
    I beg you: ask yourself what we have spent so long clawing
    away from? Why would anyone want to go back?

    Copying isn’t hard anymore. Welcome to the future already.

    I won’t/don’t miss property on the Internet, but it
    looks like we still have a lot of misanthropes out there.

    IMHO, those people could just step out of society,
    because their behavior is already antisocial.
    They monopolize the culture and discussions in ways
    that don’t allow anyone to respond without permission.

    They might as well be talking to themselves.

    You can’t have critical discussions when the “owner”
    can silence all sides because it’s their “property.”

  10. The things i have seen in terms of laptop memory is that there are specs such as SDRAM, DDR or anything else, that must match up the features of the motherboard. If the pc’s motherboard is very current and there are no operating system issues, modernizing the memory space literally takes under an hour or so. It’s one of many easiest pc upgrade types of procedures one can consider. Thanks for spreading your ideas.
    tee shirt pas cher