File-sharers could be jailed under proposed ACTA provisions
Leaked details of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement being negotiated in secret by most of the world’s largest economies suggest Internet file-sharers could be blocked from accessing the Internet if they are repeatedly accused of sharing copyrighted material, say media and digital-rights watchdogs.
And the worst-case scenario could see popular Web sites like YouTube and Flickr shut down because of a provision in the treaty that would force them to monitor everything uploaded to the site for copyright violations.
Internet law professor Michael Geist published details of “leaked” portions of the discussions on ACTA on his blog Tuesday, as a new round of ACTA negotiations began in Seoul, South Korea. The US, along with all the countries of the European Union as well as Japan, Canada, Australia and a handful of other countries, are involved in the negotiations.
“The provisions would pave the way for a globalized three-strikes and you’re out system,” Geist blogged Wednesday, referring to a proposal from copyright holders to have Internet service providers cut off service to anyone accused at least three times of illegally sharing copyrighted material.
“This means that your entire family could be denied [access] to the Internet — and hence to civic participation, health information, education, communications, and their means of earning a living — if one member is accused of copyright infringement, without access to a trial or counsel,” blogged tech writer and digital-rights supporter Cory Doctorow.
Doctorow also noted that another provision being proposed for the treaty would mean “that ISPs have to proactively police copyright on user-contributed material. This means that it will be impossible to run a service like Flickr or YouTube or Blogger, since hiring enough lawyers to ensure that the mountain of material uploaded every second isn’t infringing will exceed any hope of profitability.”
And, as Geist noted in a follow-up article on Wednesday, the proposed treaty could end up seeing file-sharers jailed for sharing copyrighted material, even if they had no financial gain from the transaction.
Geist wrote that the treaty, as currently proposed, would “extend criminal enforcement to both (1) cases of a commercial nature; and (2) cases involving significant willful copyright and trademark infringement even where there is no direct or indirect motivation of financial gain. In other words, non-commercial infringement could lead to criminal penalties.”
“The US government appears to be pushing for Three Strikes to be part of the new global IP enforcement regime which ACTA is intended to create -– despite the fact that it has been categorically rejected by the European Parliament and by national policymakers in several ACTA negotiating countries, and has never been proposed by US legislators,” writes Gwen Hinze at the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
ACTA negotiations were being held entirely in secret until this past May, when the Wikileaks Web site released a 2007 draft proposal.
In June, the administration announced it would continue the ACTA negotiations started under the previous administration.
Here’s the insidious role Sean Hannity played in derailing Al Franken’s political career
The U.S. Senate lost one of its most prominent liberals when Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota, dogged by sexual harassment allegations, announced his resignation in December 2017. Some of Franken’s defenders believed the Democratic Party was too quick to throw him under the bus; other Democrats stressed that in light of the #MeToo movement, his resignation was absolutely necessary. Franken’s political downfall is the subject of an in-depth report by the New Yorker’s Jane Mayer, who describes — among many other things — the role that Fox News’ Sean Hannity played in the media firestorm.
The media got it wrong: There’s no evidence GOP support for Trump improved after his racist outburst
One of the most popular articles last week involved claims that polls showed Republicans had increased their support of President Trump. But a closer analysis of the data reveals that any increase in support was within the margin of error. So the polls couldn’t conclude that GOP support for President Trump had gone up or down.
Polls are tricky creatures. We either give them near god-like status, or discount them entirely, often depending on whether they show us what we want.
I remember the movie “Machete,” where an opportunistic Texas politician fakes his own shooting. Within five minutes of that story breaking, the news anchor reported that the politician had drastically improved his standing in the polls. Surveys don’t work that way.
Rep. Rashida Tlaib defies Trump in NAACP speech: ‘I’m not going nowhere, not until I impeach this president’
Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) defiantly insisted on Monday that she would be in Congress until President Donald Trump is impeached.
At the 2019 annual NAACP convention, the announcer noted that Tlaib is a member of the four congresswomen known as The Squad who have recently been told by Trump to "go back" home.
Tlaib began her remarks by alluding to the president's attack.
"I’m not going nowhere, not until I impeach this president," she shouted.
Watch the video below from the NAACP.