Latest pact on internet piracy set to be derailed

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Series Details 10.2.12
Publication Date 10/02/2012
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Reports in February 2012 suggest that the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), which campaigners fear would restrict internet freedom looked likely to be delayed or scrapped, the latest in a string of measures planned to combat online piracy to falter in the face of co-ordinated protests.

The fight against ACTA had centred on Europe, even though the US, Australia, Japan and seven others are participants alongside the European Union’s 27 governments.

Though ACTA had already been signed or initialled by all EU governments, it required ratification by all 27 national parliaments as well as the European Parliament.

That process looked to have been derailed by the anti-ACTA activists, particularly in central and eastern Europe.

In addition, the Party of European Socialists (PES) adopted a text on the 9 February 2012 which condemned the democratic shortcomings of the ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) and warned against its potential threat to the fundamental rights of the citizens. The text calls the agreement 'wrong in both content and process'.

Germany refused on the 10 February 2012 to sign the ACTA treaty. The German government had already agreed in principle, but appeared to be wavering in the face of public protest.

Thousands of people took part in co-ordinated protests across Europe on the 11 February 2012 in opposition to the ACTA treaty.

Related Links
ESO: Background information: EU countries sign unpopular anti-counterfeit treaty
Website: Stop ACTA
Wikipedia: Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA)
BBC News, 6.2.12: Acta: Europe braced for protests over anti-piracy treaty
EurActiv, 10.2.12: Socialists say 'Stop ACTA'
BBC News, 11.2.12: Acta protests: Thousands take to streets across Europe
Deutsche Welle, 11.2.12: Europeans rally against anti-online piracy pact,,15737451,00.html
EUObserver, 13.2.12: EU parliament chief joins anti-Acta camp
BBC News, 10.2.12: Acta: Germany delays signing anti-piracy agreement
Deutsche Welle, 10.2.12: Goverment delays signing online anti-piracy law,,15736373,00.html
EurActiv, 13.2.12: EU Commission, businesses play down ACTA fears
European Commission: DG Trade: Creating opportunities: Trade topics: Intellectual property: Anti-counterfeiting: ACTA
Huffington Post, 12.2.12: ACTA Protests: Thousands Take To Streets To March Against International Anti-Piracy Agreement
European Commission: Memo/12/99: Transparency of ACTA negotiations (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement)
EUObserver, 20.3.12: EU commission admits mistake on Acta

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