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EFF, Public Knowledge Sue US Gov't Over Secret IP Pact
From: David Farber <dave () farber net>
Date: Fri, 19 Sep 2008 08:24:23 -0400

Begin forwarded message:

From: "lynn" <lynn () ecgincc com>
Date: September 19, 2008 8:01:22 AM EDT
To: dave () farber net
Subject: EFF, Public Knowledge Sue US Gov't Over Secret IP Pact


EFF, Public Knowledge Sue US Gov't Over Secret IP Pact

Grant Gross, IDG News Service

Two digital rights advocacy groups have filed a lawsuit against the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) in an attempt to get the office to turn over information about a secret international treaty being negotiated
to step up cross-border enforcement of copyright and piracy laws.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and Public Knowledge filed the
lawsuit Wednesday after USTR ignored their repeated requests to turn over information about the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).

ACTA could include an agreement for the U.S., Canada, the European
Commission and other nations that are part of the talks to enforce each
other's intellectual-property (IP) laws, with residents of each country
subject to criminal charges when violating the IP laws of another country,
according to a supposed ACTA discussion paper posted on Wikileaks.org in

The document posted on Wikileaks also talks about increasing border
searches in an effort to find counterfeit goods, encouraging ISPs
(Internet service providers) to remove online material that infringes
copyrights and increased cooperation in destroying infringing goods and
the equipment used to make them. The full text of the ACTA has not been
released, despite requests by EFF and Public Knowledge, as well as
Canadian groups. Wikileaks is a site that posts anonymous submissions of
sensitive documents.

"ACTA raises serious concerns for citizens' civil liberties and privacy
rights," EFF international policy director Gwen Hinze said in a statement. "This treaty could potentially change the way your computer is searched at the border or spark new invasive monitoring from your ISP. People need to
see the full text of ACTA now, so that they can evaluate its impact on
their lives and express that opinion to their political leaders. Instead, the USTR is keeping us in the dark while talks go on behind closed doors."


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