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    Is ACTA Dying And Are G8 Countries Reacting To Its Impending Death?

    Published on 15 April 2012 @ 3:18 pm

    By , Intellectual Property Watch

    Rapporteurs for three committees of the European Parliament (Legal, Industry and Trade, and International Trade) have tabled reports or announced what they will propose on the plurilateral Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). And the Group of 8 may have signalled a shift to a narrower approach on intellectual property rights at its meeting last week.

    ACTA has been negotiated as a “TRIPS-plus” (going beyond the World Trade Organization Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) standard for the enforcement of IP rights between the European Union member states, the United States and nine additional countries since 2007.

    After David Martin, rapporteur for the EP Committee on International Trade – the lead committee for ACTA – announced at a hearing of the Socialists and Democrats (S&D) party last week in Brussels that he would recommend a rejection, observers called the highly controversial agreement “dead in the water.”

    European Digital Rights Executive Director Joe McNamee suggested there was a visible reaction of the leaders of the Group of 8 industrialised countries vis à vis ACTA. In a “Non-Paper on Intellectual Property Rights Protection” [pdf] by G8 leaders who met in Washington, DC last week there was a narrower focus on counterfeit products and drugs.

    The non-paper, which is not part of the official statement of the G8 foreign ministers, proposes a “G8 initiative to strengthen enforcement against counterfeiting and piracy” (an integrated warning system, stronger penalties and border seizure possibilities), a “G8 initiative to support voluntary best practices for securing global supply chains” and a “G8 Initiative to promote pharmaceutical drug safety.” The proposals did not “throw everything together from digital to physical,” McNamee wrote to Intellectual Property Watch.

    Voluntary cooperation in IPR protection through the G8 moreover makes sense in the case that the G8 countries are doubtful about the future of ACTA. Neither the US State Department nor the German Foreign Ministry got back to Intellectual Property Watch to comment. Despite the rough ride, ACTA certainly is not yet dead.

    The vote in the EP plenary is on the agenda for June and the draft opinion of French Conservative Party Member Marielle Gallo, rapporteur for the Legal Affairs committee, recommends passing the agreement.

    In her draft opinion, Gallo tries to lay to bed concerns about ACTA’s negative effects on freedom of expression and civil rights. But the discussion continues, with new events planned by anti-ACTA activists. Amelia Andersdotter (Pirates/Green Party Group) also recommended rejecting ACTA in her opinion for the Industry, Research, and Energy (ITRE) Committee.

    All EP committees still have to vote on the respective opinions, and the plenary of the Parliament is expected to vote in mid-June.

    William New may be reached at wnew@ip-watch.ch.

     

    Comments

    1. Twitter Digs Its Feet Into Japan | Soundabble.me says:

      [...] a story that initial pennyless final Thursday though continues to get press, a member of European Parliament has implored a physique to reject ACTA, a [...]

    2. GenevaLunch » ACTA gets another quiet blow from the Swiss says:

      [...] Union member states, the United States and nine additional countries since 2007,” reports IP Watch, but in recent months it has come up against growing opposition from several corners. IP Watch, an [...]


    Leave a Reply

    We welcome your participation in article and blog comment threads, and other discussion forums, where we encourage you to analyse and react to the content available on the Intellectual Property Watch website. By participating in discussions or reader forums, or by submitting opinion pieces or comments to articles, blogs, reviews or multimedia features, you are consenting to these rules.

    We welcome your participation in article and blog comment threads, and other discussion forums, where we encourage you to analyse and react to the content available on the Intellectual Property Watch website.

    By participating in discussions or reader forums, or by submitting opinion pieces or comments to articles, blogs, reviews or multimedia features, you are consenting to these rules.

    1. You agree that you are fully responsible for the content that you post. You will not knowingly post content that violates the copyright, trademark, patent or other intellectual property right of any third party or which you know is under a confidentiality obligation preventing its publication and that you will request removal of the same should you discover that you have violated this provision. Likewise, you may not post content that is libelous, defamatory, obscene, abusive, that violates a third party's right to privacy, that otherwise violates any applicable local, state, national or international law, that amounts to spamming or that is otherwise inappropriate. You may not post content that degrades others on the basis of gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual preference, disability or other classification. Epithets and other language intended to intimidate or to incite violence are also prohibited. Furthermore, you may not impersonate others.

    2. You understand and agree that Intellectual Property Watch is not responsible for any content posted by you or third parties. You further understand that IP Watch does not monitor the content posted. Nevertheless, IP Watch may monitor the any user-generated content as it chooses and reserves the right to remove, edit or otherwise alter content that it deems inappropriate for any reason whatever without consent nor notice. We further reserve the right, in our sole discretion, to remove a user's privilege to post content on our site. IP Watch is not in any manner endorsing the content of the discussion forums and cannot and will not vouch for its reliability or otherwise accept liability for it.

    3. By submitting any contribution to IP Watch, you warrant that your contribution is your own original work and that you have the right to make it available to IP Watch for all purposes and you agree to indemnify IP Watch, its directors, employees and agents against all damages, legal fees and others expenses that may be incurred by IP Watch as a result of your breach of warranty or of these terms.

    4. You further agree not to publish any personal information about yourself or anyone else (for example telephone number or home address). If you add a comment to a blog, be aware that your email address will be apparent.

    5. IP Watch will not be liable for any loss including but not limited to the following (whether such losses are foreseen, known or otherwise): loss of data, loss of revenue or anticipated profit, loss of business, loss of opportunity, loss of goodwill or injury to reputation, losses suffered by third parties, any indirect, consequential or exemplary damages.

    6. You understand and agree that the discussion forums are to be used only for non-commercial purposes. You may not solicit funds, promote commercial entities or otherwise engage in commercial activity in our discussion forums.

    7. You acknowledge and agree that you use and/or rely on any information obtained through the discussion forums at your own risk.

    8. For any content that you post, you hereby grant to IP Watch the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual, exclusive and fully sub-licensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part, world-wide and to incorporate it in other works, in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

    9. These terms and your posts and contributions shall be governed and interpreted in accordance with the laws of Switzerland (without giving effect to conflict of laws principles thereof) and any dispute exclusively settled by the Courts of the Canton of Geneva.

     

     
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